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Palermo mishears song


To the editor,

I would like to raise an objection to Mark Palermo's categorisation of Katy Perry's song "I Kissed a Girl" in his review of Vicky Cristina Barcelona(Cinema Palermo, August 14). Where, other than our own social preconceptions (and other critics' comments), is he getting the idea that her song "slights teenage homosexual desire"? Why can't it just be a song about a (previously) straight girl discovering that she likes girls, too? There isn't any one way that people figure that out. And at least Perry expresses some concern about how her boyfriend will feel. In Jill Sobule's song "I Kissed a Girl"---to which Perry's song is being endlessly compared---two women diss their boyfriends and lie to them, and then (in the music video) go back home to them after spending the day making out with each other. How is that a better representation of bisexual discovery?

Critics have also said Katy Perry's music advocates a negative view of male homosexuality. In seems to me that the lyrics to Franz Ferdinand's song "Michael"---"Michael, you're dancing like a beautiful dance whore"---should incur more offence than anything in Katy Perry's songs.

As a culture, we're so busy looking for prejudice and bias that we take offence at unnecessary things. We need to start taking offence at our own offensiveness, and really examine what it is we're reacting to before condemning it.

By --Dana Kayes

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