Change of heart

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The Independent Online
From Mr Ian MacMillan

Sir: I was intrigued to read Julie Burchill's attack on John Lyttle in today's newspaper (letter, 31 July), particularly the part where she described herself as "an important member of the gay community". Could this be the same Julie Burchill who, in a savage attack on gay men in the now defunct City Limits magazine, wrote that "they used to be funny but now they're not even that any more", presumably referring to our refusal in the Nineties to parade the Strand in full drag singing "Burlington Bertie from Bow". Or perhaps it is the Julie Burchill who, until recently was penning long diatribes on the relatively enormous penis size of Jewish men, or furthering the advancement of cultural criticism with paeans to the virtues of the pop group Bananarama. As Julie is no doubt soon to discover, the gay community she now so embraces often thrives on bitching - the problem is that as soon as you start, there will always be a bigger bitch around the corner with a sharper bite.

Yours faithfully,

Ian MacMillan

London, SW2

31 July