Margaret Thatcher Hub




Movie Review: 'Pride'

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You'll feel like dancing, too. "Pride" is the year's most adorable movie.  

BY NATHANIEL ROGERS 

Truth is stranger-than-fiction and also often gayer. The new feature PRIDE dramatizes a largely unknown historical anecdote from the bitter year-long miner’s strike in Thatcher-era Britain when a group of gay activists fundraised for the miners. This alliance is at first an awkward tense match but it eventually finds heartwarming pockets of oxygen when these two unlikely groups are breathing the same air.

It begins with a handful of gay activists (“and lesbian!” their only female member interjects with a small wave in a recurring joke), notice a sudden decline in police bullying in their neighborhood. They make the connection: the conservative government has a new minority to scapegoat. They form a group called LGSM “Lesbians and Gays for the Striking Miners” to help the people suffering without paychecks for months on end — a byproduct of Margaret Thatcher’s war against the unions.

At first, though, these gay heroes can’t even find a miner’s group that will take their money in this cross culture dramedy. MORE AFTER THE JUMP...

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Margaret Thatcher's Funeral, from Above: PHOTO

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From the dome of London's St. Paul's Cathedral (click to enlarge)

The two red chairs at the front are The Queen and Prince Philip's. More on the funeral, which has an estimated cost of £10m, here.

It was not without its protests:

Shame


Margaret Thatcher's Anti-Gay 1987 Speech: VIDEO

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In the wake of Margaret Thatcher's death earlier this month, video has emerged online of a speech she gave at a Conservative Party Conference in October 1987, the year before her government introduced Section 28 legislation which forbid teaching in any school that homosexual relationships were acceptable.

Says Thatcher in the clip:

"But it's the plight of individual boys and girls that worries me the most. Too often, our children don't get the education they need, the education they deserve....Children who need to be taught to respect traditional moral values are being taught that they have an inalienable right to be gay....All of those children are being cheated of a sound start in life. Yes, cheated."

Watch, AFTER THE JUMP...

The full transcript of the speech is here.

(h/t huffpost)

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Former UK Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher Dead at 87

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Former Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher has died from a stroke, her press spokesman Lord Bell told news outlets this morning. Thatcher was the longest-serving prime minister of the UK of the 20th Century

Bell's statement according to the Press Association: "It is with great sadness that Mark and Carol Thatcher announced that their mother Baroness Thatcher died peacefully following a stroke this morning. A further statement will be made later."

NYT:

Lady Thatcher had been in poor health for months. She served as prime minister for 11 years, beginning in 1979. She was known variously as the ‘Iron Lady,’ a stern Conservative who transformed Britain’s way of thinking about its economic and political life, broke union power and opened the way to far greater private ownership.

The Daily Beast's Tom Doran details her gay rights legacy:

Here, as with most of her achievements, it's a mixed bag. As a member of Parliament (MP) in the 1960s, she was one of only a handful of Conservatives to vote for the decriminalization of homosexuality, a truly forward-thinking and brave gesture that she deserves a great deal of credit for.

Sadly, as Prime Minister, she would squander much of that credit (ironically enough, for a politician who put such stock in thrift) by lending her support to one of the nastiest anti-gay measures of modern times: the infamous Section 28 of the Local Government Act 1988, which forbade schools from teaching "the acceptability of homosexuality as a pretended family relationship". This was despite the open secret (among Westminster insiders, at least) that several prominent members of her government were themselves gay, albeit in reinforced-steel closets.

More on the repeal of Section 28 here.

RIP.


Michele Bachmann Ad Capitalizes On 'Iron Lady' Interest

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Margaret Thatcher has been all over the news as of late, thanks to the upcoming, Meryl Streep-starring biopic about the former British Prime Minister, The Iron Lady.

Hoping to capitalize on this renewed interest, Republican presidential candidate Michele Bachmann has taken describing herself as America's "Iron Lady."

In addition to making the comparison between herself and fellow conservative Thatcher while on the campaign trail, the congresswoman has now released an ad in Iowa that places even greater emphasis on her Thatcher-esque qualities.

Here's the commercial's text, via CNN:

Born and raised in Iowa, only one candidate has been a consistent conservative fighter who fought 'Obamacare,' who fought increasing our debt ceiling – even as other Republicans were cutting deals with Obama. An expert in tax law who will fight for deep cuts in spending to reduce America's debt, restore our economy and create real jobs – and she'll never back down.

But while Margaret Thatcher was able to get her way overseas, the Des Moines Register recently noted that Bachmann, for all her popular support and high-profile crusades, has been ineffective at passing actual laws.

Watch Bachmann's "Iron Lady" ad AFTER THE JUMP...

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WATCH: Meryl Streep And Phyllida Lloyd Talk About 'Iron Lady'

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Apparently, the new Thatcher biopic, Iron Lady, is long on Margaret-Thatcher-The-Woman and short on Margaret-Thatcher-The-World-Historic-Personage. Some critics have grumbled about the artists' insistence on humanizing the old boogylady, while acknowledging how affecting it is to see Meryl Streep, Thatcher's onscreen avatar, done up as a doddering old post-retirement Maggie in the grips of burgeoning dementia. Listening to Streep and her director, the fantastic Phyllida Lloyd (who's a lesbian, incidentally), dish on the film with The Hollywood Reporter, it becomes clear that it's all intentional -- the artists believed Maggie's politics were among the least interesting things about her. Towards the end, Streep gets off one of the coolest and most surprising answers I've heard an actor give in an interview:

Hollywood Reporter: What would you each like people to, in a perfect world, take away from this film? Would you like them to think differently in some way about Margaret Thatcher or what she represented, or the era that she came from? Is there something you'd be very pleased to know people left here thinking?

Meryl Streep: I would like to think that everybody that got on a subway and saw some old lady sitting across from them, that they would imagine that a whole huge life lay behind all those wrinkles, and that seemingly nondescript, forgettable [face]. I mean, there is almost nothing less interesting in our consumerist society than an old lady. Um ... dismissed. We don’t make movies for her. We don’t give a damn. You can’t sell her anything, she doesn’t buy anything. But just the idea that everything -- the whole panoply of human experience, births, deaths, struggles, joy -- everything’s in there. And just to imagine that. That’s what I would hope.

Watch the interview AFTER THE JUMP ...

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