Scouts-L Mail Archive for December of 1999: ELTON JOHN
Thu, 9 Dec 1999 12:42:30 -0800
Nancy Bass asked: What's going on here? I haven't heard anything about
this. What did he do?
On 11/30/99 The SUN (tabloid magazine...) ran a story about a
song/dance routine in which Elton John performed a song (It's a Sin -
Pet Shop Boys) and had in the background professional dancers dressed
up as scouts. It (Sun Story) was a sensationalized story and some of
the facts were overstated.
It has been erroneously communicated in the media that they were
dressed as "Cub Scouts". It is my understanding (and per looking at the
picture) that they had Venturer and Scout shirts/shorts and had Cub
Scout hats on. This does not minimize the breech of taste, judgement
This story was then carried by The Drudge Report and quickly made the
The dancers did a strip routine in which they posed provocatively and
reportedly grabbed their crotches.
Both Stonewall and Elton should be faulted for the lack of judgement,
sensitivity and taste.
I don't think Stonewall took it seriously enough at first and Elton
seems to be sluffing it off a bit.
I personally would like to see a letter of apology up at their web site
Letters from me to email@example.com and firstname.lastname@example.org
(Mark Watson - Executive Committee) have not been responded to as of
yet. Perhaps other concerned individuals could voice their feelings to
Stonewall via email?
>From Public Relations, Baden-Powell House - November 30, 1999
Members might be interested to learn that Stonewall has formally
apologised by telephone (and via the BBC, see their News Website) for
any embarrassment or offence caused to The Scout Association following
Elton John's performance; they recognise the significant work
undertaken by TSA and hope that this has not been jeopardised.
Their Chief Executive is today (Tuesday) in Strasbourg and will be in
further discussions with The Chief Executive of The Scout Association
Thank you to all those Members who rang and emailed Headquarters
offering support and also to those who contacted Stonewall and The Sun
John Fogg - email@example.com
The following is an extract from a transcript of an interview with Sir
Elton John broadcast by ITV on the 'OK TV' Show' at 2030 hours on 3
Interviewer: Now that you have featured in the press this week because
of the scout's thing and a lot of the papers have been saying that
Elton should apologise.
Elton John: Well, I didn't mean to cause offence. I would never be
offensive to people, I did it firmly tongue in cheek. I am not going to
officially apologise, but I didn't mean to cause any offence and if I
did, I'm sorry. But if people took offence that is their problem.
As for Sir Elton, Agence France Presse reported his spokesperson
saying, "The whole performance was a bit of high camp in the great
British tradition of comedy like Benny Hill. It was meant to be a bit
of fun for an appropriate audience." Fogg described Sir Elton's act as
"an error of judgment" and hoped the singer-songwriter "may have
thought it was a bit of fun at the time but thinks different now" --
even to the extent that he might do something "positive" for Scouts,
perhaps even a benefit concert.
David Furnish, Sir Elton's partner, dismissed the controversy and said
it had been "blown out of all proportion".
I think that Elton John should officially and publically apologize to
Scout Associations, his fans and others.
I realize that neither he nor Stonewall intended for it to be perceived
the way it was, but they should have shown more common sense and
Many of his fans, both straight and gay, are upset and saddened over
I think Elton John and Stonewall needs to know this.
I don't think it does a lot of good to individually boycott his music,
rather I think it would make a bigger impact if lots of concerned
individuals wrote to Stonewall in the spirit of communicating how this
incidence has affected them personally and has done a disservice to
Write: firstname.lastname@example.org & Mark Watson email@example.com
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