An LBGT news website’s tongue-in-cheek article labeling four-year-old Prince George as a ‘gay icon’ has sparked fury online and amongst public figures.
The hugely controversial article, published by PinkNews – which describes itself as the "premier LGBT news outlet in the UK and beyond" – describes how a photo of George with his hands on his face in a helicopter in Germany last month had made him a new symbol of gay pride.
However, the claims have been fiercely rejected by some, including Jim Allister, leader of Northern Ireland’s Traditional Unionist Voice (TUV) party, who labelled the article as “outrageous and sick”.
While Allister wrote to the media outlet demanding the article be taken down, Chief executive of PinkNews, Benjamin Cohen told BBC News he had “no intention” of removing the article, despite the demands of Allister, who is publicly opposed to LGBT rights.
Cohen argues that the article is “tongue-in-cheek” and a perfectly worthwhile piece of social commentary, following “hundreds” of comments by social media users after the royal family's visit to the German airbase.
The original article, published on July 25, was titled ‘People think Prince George looks fabulous in this new photo’.
“Prince George has become a gay icon overnight,” author Josh Jackman wrote.
“The monarch to be has always been cute and well-dressed but one day before his fourth birthday a photo of him excitedly holding his face changed everything.
“At least, that’s what the people — sorry, his subjects — are saying.”
While the article has been removed from the websites homepage, Cohen says it will remain accessible to read on the internet.
Allister told PinkNews “sexualising a young child” was “entirely inappropriate”.
“To take an image of a little boy and to fantasise him being an icon for a life defined by sex is outrageous and sick,” he said.
However, journalist Jackman counter argued stating that you did not have to be gay to be a LGBT icon, referencing singers such as Madonna and Ariana Grande.