Prince George 'gay icon' label sparks outrage
An online news article has sparked outrage after it labelled Prince George a "gay icon".
The PinkNews article referred to a photo of the four-year-old with his hands on his face in a helicopter during a family tour of an aviation factory in Germany last month.
It sparked a formal complaint from a Northern Ireland politician who described the article as "outrageous and sick", the BBC NI reported.
Traditional Unionist Voice leader Jim Allister wrote to the UK LGBT online news site requesting they remove the article and make a formal apology.
* Prince Philip, to retire from Royal duties, Buckingham Palace confirms
* Royal birthday: Prince George and Princess Charlotte told about Diana
* Prince George gets telling-off at aunt Pippa Middleton's wedding
In his complaint, Allister wrote that "sexualising a young child in this fashion is entirely inappropriate," the BBC NI reported.
"To take an image of a little boy and to fantasize of him being an icon for a life defined by sex is outrageous and sick."
PinkNews chief executive Benjamin Cohen said the feature was tongue in cheek, based on the comments of "hundreds" of social media users and that he had no intentions of removing the article at the request of Allister who, he said, opposed lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people.
Cohen told the BBC NI that he was personally offended by some of the "repugnant" remarks contained in Allister's letter of complaint.
The article, People think Prince George looks fabulous in this new photo, was published on July 25 and written by Josh Jackman.
The article was written as a commentary, spurred by Twitter users who referred to the child as a gay icon.
The article read: "Prince George has become a gay icon overnight. 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."
Allister said that the photo was taken out of context.
He said in reality, the photo shows a four-year-old boy who was "smartly dressed and excited about being on a helicopter with his male father and female mother".
The online website said it could not be held to the UK's Independent Press Standards Organisation as it was a digital media company and not a newspaper or a magazine.
Cohen said the Prince George article was a "legitimate" piece of social commentary.
He rejected Allister's claim that it had "sexualised" a young child.