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Dutch to legalise gay sex in public park

Thursday, March 13, 2008 • 2:19 pm

With the possible exception of Denmark, I figure you can pretty much stick a fork in western Europe:

Dutch council officials will permit gay sex in public areas but fine dog owners who let their pets off the leash in Amsterdam’s Vondelpark.

Paul van Grieken, an Alderman in the Oud-Zuid district of the city, has startled many Amsterdammers, despite their famously liberal attitudes, with plans to allow public sex as part of this summer’s new rules of conduct for the country’s best-known park.

“Why should we try to impose something that is actually impossible to impose, which also causes little bother for others and for a certain group actually means much pleasure?”, he said.

Amsterdam’s beautiful Vondelpark in the centre of city draws hordes of summer visitors, families, skaters and joggers.

But the park’s rose garden has become famous as a trysting spot for gay men looking for uncomplicated sexual encounters.

Mr van Grieken stresses that tolerance to “cruising” gays, aimed at protecting homosexuals from violence, will have “strict rules attached”.

“Thus, condoms must always be cleared away, it must never take place in the neighbourhood of children’s playgrounds and the sex must be restricted to the evening and night-time,” he said.

This sounds pretty good to me. I mean, what could possibly go wrong?

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Seems like some pretty good rules for the GCC to adopt when it gathers in Anaheim in 2009.  It would be helpful if Disneyland would agree and set aside an area. 

All things in good order and, as you said Greg, what could possibly go wrong?

[1] Posted by hanks on 03-13-2008 at 03:27 PM • top

Oh no… the new Episcopal commission on Liturgy is going to see this and adapt this “rose garden” ruling for acceptable public behavior in Episcopal church labyrinths.

And I’m sure a liturgy for it will show up in Schori’s new BCP—right after the revised litany:


From hamburgers, cow farts, and methane emissions,
Good Lord, deliver us!

[2] Posted by LP on 03-13-2008 at 03:37 PM • top

What is this preoccupation with sex?  Why shouldn’t people fornicate in parks, classrooms, grocery stores or church pews?  Heck, as long as they remove the evidence when they are done, what harm could there possibly be to public morals or public health?  I mean, if it feels good do it, right?  Isn’t that the essence of the “New Thing” God is doing?

[3] Posted by DaveG on 03-13-2008 at 03:41 PM • top

This has been a head shaking week.

[4] Posted by Paul B on 03-13-2008 at 03:42 PM • top

Having sex is now no different from a handshake or a quick peck on the cheek from a friend. Society has managed to take one of God’s most precious gifts and turn it into the most banal of social transactions.

[5] Posted by The Pilgrim on 03-13-2008 at 03:49 PM • top

You have GOT to be kidding!!!  How stupid is this? 

“Honey, let’s take little Billy to the park and fly kites, OK?  Billy, make sure you don’t go near the rose garden…there are some nice men back there who are having sex with each other, and maybe with you if you are not careful.”

Yeah, that works…  “Stupid is as stupid does…”  Forrest Gump

[6] Posted by B. Hunter on 03-13-2008 at 03:50 PM • top

What could possibly go wrong? Hmmm, something to do with off leash dogs, perhaps? cool hmm

The new park code of conduct will set out stiff fines for dogs that are allowed to run around the Vondelpark off the leash.
“Research showed that many people find this disturbing,” said Mr van Grieken.

[7] Posted by Deja Vu on 03-13-2008 at 03:53 PM • top

Will it be legal for gay dogs to be taken off the leash if it’s for the express purpose of having sex? How about if a gay ma….

Er, never mind. Forget I asked. That’s next decade’s sexual deviation to get approved.

[8] Posted by LP on 03-13-2008 at 03:55 PM • top

I’m going to guess that the Dutch Marines will not be using any variant of the old USMC “We don’t promise you a rose garden” recruiting poster.

[9] Posted by Ed the Roman on 03-13-2008 at 04:24 PM • top

Has the HOB voted to do this in Central Park so 815 can be supportive and inclusive?

[10] Posted by dwstroudmd+ on 03-13-2008 at 04:32 PM • top

With or without a leash, I wouldn’t take my dog to that park.  He’s a sensitive little guy.

[11] Posted by illinisouth on 03-13-2008 at 04:37 PM • top

#27 in a series of Awfully Good Reasons to Stay the Hell Out of Holland.

the snarkster

[12] Posted by the snarkster on 03-13-2008 at 04:41 PM • top

Unless you happen to be a gay exhibitionist pothead, right snarky?

[13] Posted by Marty the Baptist on 03-13-2008 at 04:43 PM • top

I am reminded of reading Boswell’s London diary and his shame at taking streetwalkers in the parks of London. At least he was ashamed.  The “natural man” is rutting away like the goats and sheep and ... so edifying for us all.

[14] Posted by oscewicee on 03-13-2008 at 04:47 PM • top

On a related note, I understand the EU is trying make France replace the Thunder Mountain ride at Disney Paris with a Brokeback Mountain ride. Heh…..... Heh Heh…....................

Don’t you just hate it when you go to the park and step in a big pile of doggy doo? Well, no more. But you can step on a nice freshly used condom. bleaghhh!!!

the snarkster

[15] Posted by the snarkster on 03-13-2008 at 05:06 PM • top

My dog sniffs way too much for this park.

[16] Posted by Going Home on 03-13-2008 at 05:15 PM • top

Suggestion for Mr van Grieken: Buy them a building where they can get together (no pun intended).  This will get them off the streets and you won’t have to deal with the the condum conundrum.  Call it the Homo Hotel and make it a stop on the GrayLine Tours.

[17] Posted by The Templar on 03-13-2008 at 07:22 PM • top

Open the Dutch cemetaries for the necrophiliacs. I wonder, at times, what Europe would be like now had Germany won the War?

[18] Posted by RMBruton on 03-13-2008 at 07:24 PM • top

You know how homosexuals are always trying to draw distinctions in Gen 19 between homosexuality, rape, inhospitality, etc.? Stuff like this gets me to wondering that maybe the proper way to interpret Gen 19 is that the behaviors of the inhabitants of Sodom are all of a piece, and that you can’t separate the first from the others. I don’t see why they can’t even police themselves - it would be in their interests if they want to encourage acceptance of their lifestyle, but they can’t/won’t do it even when it’s in their interest.

[19] Posted by SpongJohn SquarePantheist on 03-13-2008 at 07:32 PM • top

[20] SpongJohn SquarePantheist
Are you thinking that the messengers were preparing to camp out in the public commons/ park? But Lot knew it would not be safe for young male visitors to camp out in the public commons/ park. So he got them out of the public commons/ park. Then the men of Sodom who saw Lot turn the young messenger boys from camping out, came to Lot’s house, demanding them.

[20] Posted by Deja Vu on 03-13-2008 at 07:47 PM • top

Word to Van Greiken, when you said;  “Why should we try to impose something that is actually impossible to impose, which also causes little bother for others and for a certain group actually means much pleasure?”  You forgot one other group…..THOSE WHO SICKENED BY THE SITE OF IT.
If the Dutch police can’t control a bunch of homosexuals making out in a city park, one has to wonder how they are able to deal with burglary, murder and other more serious crimes.

[21] Posted by The Templar on 03-13-2008 at 08:04 PM • top


I’m looking at Judges 19 and we have another case of a man planning to camp in the public square. An old man takes him in but the men of the city pound on the old man’s door, demanding the young man come out so that they may have sex with him (Judges 19:22).

So are you thinking that maybe homosexuality, when unchecked, evolves in the direction of sex in the public square, which becomes expected and eventually compulsory?

So we might view it as very inhospitable. But totalitarians may view it as very inclusive, a place for every one at the table and the grassy commons, and all (must) participate—the essence of hospitality.

[22] Posted by Deja Vu on 03-13-2008 at 08:05 PM • top

#23 DV, I wasn’t trying to draw specific parallels between this story and those passages. I was more or less thinking of the modern arguments that try to separate out homosexual behavior from related problems such as promiscuity or pedophilia. And I think this mindset of separation is wrong. For example it lead the media to refer to “child” molestation during the priest abuse scandal, when 80% of the children involved were male. It also leads to faulty exegesis of the Genesis passage, where it is said it has *nothing* to do with homosexuality, *just* rape and hospitality.

I’m saying that a first time straightforward reading of the passage is probably the most accurate, rather than drawing fine distinctions that aren’t there, and events like this seem to indicate that’s the case.

[23] Posted by SpongJohn SquarePantheist on 03-13-2008 at 08:21 PM • top

SpongJohn SquarePantheist: the media also referred to the priest abuse scandal as involving “children” when more than 80% of the victims were children in the strictest legal sense only.  Most of the “boys” were between 13 - 17.  In other words adult men (priests) were having sex with teenage boys.

[24] Posted by loonpond on 03-13-2008 at 09:14 PM • top

I’m curious: Have the Dutch legalized home-schooling?

[25] Posted by Irenaeus on 03-13-2008 at 09:26 PM • top

Once sharia is established in Holland in the next decade or so, the park problem in its present form will go away.

[26] Posted by Siangombe on 03-13-2008 at 09:33 PM • top

I think we have a venue for the next General Convention.

[27] Posted by Stephen on 03-13-2008 at 09:54 PM • top

Please dont suggest Disneyland set aside an area for such activities. If you knew the admission price for Disneyland, you’d know its way too much to pay for sex!!

[28] Posted by helpmelord on 03-13-2008 at 11:13 PM • top

Oh Lord God!  How we have sinned against You! 

Remember how we were once your people.  We were hospitalable to undesirables, even in times when it meant we might loose our own lives.  You even used our peasants to bring the Gospel to heretical clergy, handed down from an apostate church.  And there was a time when You raised up men and women who had a passion for You, and for being salt and light to those who did not. 

Oh God, how did we come to be this way?  The outside of the cup and bowl are netjes;  the inside is vies.  And we cannot clean it ourselves.  Forgive us Lord.  Wash us, for we cannot wash this sin from ourselves.  Give us the hearts that You gave to our forefathers, that we may once again claim You as our only hope in life and in death;  and live to serve and glorify you now as in Eternity. 


[29] Posted by J Eppinga on 03-13-2008 at 11:36 PM • top

That scene from “The Birds” keeps coming back to me. When all the locals gathered at the popular watering hole were trying to figure out what was making the birds go so batty, the town drunk kept saying, “Its the end of the world!”


[30] Posted by Bob K. on 03-14-2008 at 12:11 AM • top

“Research showed that many people find [dogs off leashes] disturbing.”  I don’t care who you are, that’s funny.

[31] Posted by Anglicanum on 03-14-2008 at 06:53 AM • top

I say let Islam clean this mess up. Western Europe is toast. Perhaps God will use the Muslims like the Assyrians and Babylonians where used to chastize Israel. Perhaps the survivors and the new Muslim overlords can then be converted to Jesus, in the mean time let nature take its grim and brtual corrective course. When things have hit this low of a nadir, the end is truely near. I don’t know if things can be saved if they have reached this point.

What vileness, and to think certain people in our church want to celebrate this. I hate to point out to people that cruising and such is mainstream gay culture. In my dear city, with its large and powerful gay community there are more then a few parks and public spaces here in Minneapolis that are used in the same manner for the same purpose. Here on public land,in one well known example gay men do this down by the river and when the park board trimmed some brush to make it nicer and less theatening for park users, they where accused of homo-phobia and or course in the end apologized to the gay community. This kind of late stage decadence and moral idiocy is all over the post-modern, west; granted this an extreme example in the Netherlands. But what happens among the Dutch does spread, as they tend to be on the cutting edge of this stuff.

[32] Posted by Anglo-Catholic-Jihadi on 03-14-2008 at 09:01 AM • top

FYI - this article was based on a “discussion note” of van Grieken concerning the use of the Vondelpark.  The discussion note was rather “sensational,” and I am looking at multiple articles regarding this note - some claim to quote it directly, with quotes like “couples ... may not have sex near playgrounds”.
Sex is not tolerated in the Vondelpark or in any open places in Amsterdam, according to the city of Amsterdam.  There is discussion about the phenomenon of “cruising” and whatever it is this entails - see yesterday’s news item from the city of Amsterdam (in Dutch - ).
The article here says that “cruising” does take place in the Vondelpark, and says that this discussion note proposed to have police take action only when activities take place which are seen as offensive or damaging - meaning I guess that there are some activities that are a part of “cruising” which are considered as not offensive or damaging.  So apparently “cruising” can not be equated with “sex.”
Dutch people are fond of using hip English words without always knowing exactly what they mean - I think part of the ambiguity here is that the word “cruising” is not exactly a legally descriptive term.
Most likely the city here is trying to exercise some damage control, since other sources do have quotes from the note about sex being allowed with some qualifications, and a number of news sources have provided their articles with titles like “Sex now allowed in the Vondelpark.”
The article indeed is a source of grave concern, but I think it’s also important to realize that this is only a discussion note, and that Amsterdam’s policy explicitly forbids all types of public sex.

[33] Posted by j.m.c. on 03-14-2008 at 09:59 AM • top

Aren’t these the Dutch whose Muslim followers threaten politicians, writers, and cartoonists? I wouldn’t want to be caught with my pants down over this thing…. bound to be a culture clash.

[34] Posted by Festivus on 03-14-2008 at 12:13 PM • top

I have done a lot of research on the Dutch, being of Dutch extraction myself.
The famous broad-mindedness and bottomless tolerance that has been their pride, according to some sources, was really a coping mechanism that allowed them access to unlimited markets back in the days when their industry and ambition made them the most prosperous country in Europe. 
It appears to be finally biting them in the butt.

[35] Posted by Hope on 03-14-2008 at 12:21 PM • top

Well… for now anyway.  The Netherlands will be a majority Muslim country within a generation or so, and we’ll see what happens to all this rampant liberalism then…

[36] Posted by st. anonymous on 03-16-2008 at 09:03 AM • top

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