International Fetish Day

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International Fetish Day is a day supporting the BDSM community. It originated in the United Kingdom as "National Fetish Day" and was first held on 21 January 2008. The first International Fetish Day was held on 16 January 2009.

The main purpose of International Fetish Day is to increase awareness and support of the fetish community, whilst also opposing pornography laws, including those relating to extreme pornography. It is also designed to encourage members of the community to be more open about their sexuality. One of the aspects of doing so is to wear an item of purple clothing. The event was created by the fetishist "Pierced Knight".

Perverts Wear Purple

On National Fetish Day, one of the main aspects is that members of the community wear an item of purple clothing as a sign that they are a member, in an event known as "Perverts Wear Purple". The main benefit of this act is that it indicates that someone is a member of the community whilst being "Vanilla" at the same time. Purple is a colour widely used in BDSM circles. The main website says that, "By joining this fun 'National Fetish Day – Perverts Wear Purple' event, you as an individual will be joined by fellow community people all over the country in saying 'It's ok to enjoy what I enjoy' without damaging your 'vanilla' identity or integrity."

Ronnie Campbell MP

The Labour Member of Parliament for Blyth Valley, Ronnie Campbell, accidentally gave his support to National Fetish Day, because he misunderstood the word "Fetish" and was not aware of the "Perverts Wear Purple" slogan. A local newspaper, the Sunday Sun interviewed Campbell about his supposed support for the event by wearing purple. Campbell said, "I thought a fetish was a worry, like worrying about backing the right horse."

Pierced Knight claimed that,

I received an email from Carol Delaney, the secretary to Ronnie Campbell, Labour MP for Blyth Valley. She confirmed that Mr Campbell will be supporting this national day of awareness on 21st January. Using the tag line of 'Perverts Wear Purple' those that support this day will be wearing about their person something that is purple, like a shirt, a tie, a skirt, a hair band.

Campbell wrote a letter of complaint to the Sunday Sun, claiming that they had been making him look stupid by "twisting and turning" the meaning of what he had been saying. He wrote that, "I would never have agreed to support anything that had the title 'Perverts wear Purple' and I do not imagine any other Member of Parliament would either."

The Sunday Sun published a response saying,

If you hadn't misunderstood the word 'fetish' and backed National Fetish Day in the first place, we wouldn't have had a story. We did not twist anything and contacted you four times to clarify certain points. In fact, you were still backing National Fetish Day — saying you would wear your purple tie or shirt — until our final call when we pointed out the event slogan was 'perverts wear purple'. Imagine the story we could have written if we hadn't done this? This paper respects you as a Labour MP with an independent voice. However, this doesn't stop us writing stories when you drop yourself in it.


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