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Whenever (some) content providers are feeling lazy but need to (1) turn in some sort of promised work product on something ASAP and (2) want to up their hit-count without bothering to do anything original or useful there is nothing like dragging out the the old (completely false ... but who really cares? because do bisexual people even exist?) tired tropes about bisexuality.

A situation some commercial writer called Daniel Warner obviously recently found himself in, because he managed to pen something so spectacularly obtuse and foolish that even the mysterious cabal that runs HuffPo noticed that something was wrong.

First a direct response entitled "We're Not Bicurious - We're Bifurious!" was posted by two National Union of Students (NUS) LGBT Campaign members Lauren Connors, Bisexual Representative and Matt Stanley a campaign committee member. Then a HuffPo Live segment What Part Of 'Bisexual' Don't You Understand? was assembled and aired.

The segment was hosted by Ahmed Shihab-Eldin with a panel of bisexual writers, researchers and activists including:
A.J. Walkley bisexual author & blogger;
Neal Boulton bisexual magazine editor/publisher (and a Married Bi Parent);
Ellyn Ruthstrom of the Bisexual Resource Center (BRC);
Allen Rosenthal an American Institute of Bisexuality (AIB) research scholar

It's not the final word on the subject but both responses are worthwhile and are a further indication of the growing annoyance and public presence of the Bisexual Community. A population that has historically always been an active and contributing part of the modern LGBTQ movement, but that has had a tendency to play the part of the good foot-soldiers rather than hog the limelight. However increasingly stung by a lackadaisical attitude (or in some well know cases even a dismissive & hostile attitude) exhibited towards the "B" in LGBT bisexual people seem to be increasingly coming forward and demanding equal respect and representation.

Much of this more spunky attitude has been jump-started by some of the bisexual movements 'young turks' such as Bisexual-Queer Theorists including Israeli Genderqueer Academic Shiri Eisner; Bisexual TransActivist Julia Serano; blogger and researcher Patrick RichardsFink; Bisexual campaigners including BiNet USA president Faith Cheltenham; Bay Area Bisexual Network's Martin Rawlings-Fein; Biisexual Gender Varient Student Activist Aud Traher; BiUnity's Denise Ingram; the Bisexual Organizing Project's Lauren Beach; European Bisexual Activist Miguel Obradors; and Lindasusan Ulrich principal author of the San Francisco Human Rights Commission's Bisexual Invisibility Report; along with a raft of critical research spearheaded by organizations such as the American Institute of Bisexuality (AIB) especially it's well respected Journal of Bisexuality; BiUK, BiReCon and the Bi Research Group.

And in the end the major LGBTQ Groups may come to rue the day that their colonial mentality woke the sleeping giant, because as pointed out by places like the Williams Institute fifty percent of people more or less who identify as either Gay/Lesbian or Bisexual actually identify as bisexual, making us the largest portion of the Queer Community.

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Source: HuffPo: Bisexuality: Is It Fun, Non Committal or Just Plain Greedy? then We're Not Bicurious - We're Bifurious! + What Part Of 'Bisexual' Don't You Understand?,   LipstickLori: Bisexuality: Myths and lazy journalism,   Bi Radical, Whipping Girl, Eponymous Fliponymous,   Closets and Criticisms of LGBT Research (Part 1) (Part 2)


( 2 comments — Leave a comment )
4th Dec, 2012 10:07 (UTC)
"Young turks"
Dear Bialogue,

Thanks for the mention. I am very flattered, and it is appreciated.

However, I feel uncomfortable at your use of the expression "young turks". According to usingenglish.com, "A Young Turk is a young person who is rebellious and difficult to control in a company, team or organisation." This is teeming with racist and orientalist meanings, implying that Arabic/Middle Eastern people are wild and uncontrollable savages. (For more about this topic, please refer to: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Orientalism_%28book%29).

In particular as a Middle Eastern brown person, who regularly writes about racism (mostly on my Hebrew blog, but also on tumblr), the grim irony of using this phrase to describe me is not lost on me.

I realize that you only meant it as a figure of speech and used it with the best of intentions. However, if you could correct this in the post above, and refrain from using it to describe me in the future, I would very much appreciate it.

Many thanks,
Shiri Eisner
4th Dec, 2012 18:51 (UTC)
Re: "Young turks"
Dear Shiri,

LOL you know I had discussions with Aud and Patrick about using that exact phrase.

But I was more concerned that someone object to it on the grounds of both a misunderstanding of/repugnance/hatred towards anything not specifically Western Christian and possibly the excesses that came later and their continuing repercussions (i.e. Armenians, Kurds, and the continuing repercussions from the break-up and re-colonization by European Powers of the old Ottoman Empire . . . can we all say Syria, Alawites, & Baath Party for example? /*extreme sarcasm*/)

I was using it very specifically in it's original meaning, i.e. 'Les Jeunes Turcs' aka 'Genç Türkle/Jön Türkler', the original idealists who became the Committee of Union and Progress (CUP) who were a liberal, multi-ethnic secular Turkish reform movement trying to first reform and then do away with in the old absolute monarchy of the Ottoman Empire specifically during what is called the Revolutionary Era of 1906–1908.

While it is true that in the end they specifically were not able to make the leap from an idealistic theoretical group, and indeed most of them ended up shot . . . possibly not a good thing to be compared to I suppose . . . their original ideas were and continue to be influential. In particular it is mentioned that:

The revolution and CUP's work had a great impact on Muslims in other countries. The Persian community in Istanbul founded the Iranian Union and Progress Committee. Indian Muslims imitated the CUP oath administered to recruits of the organization. The leaders of the Young Bukhara movement were deeply influenced by the Young Turk Revolution, and saw it as an example to emulate.
Many people continue to feel that without some of their original theoretical influences in trying to reconcile traditional Islamic thought and Soicalism, the push to keep Turkey (however imperfectly) from becoming a semi-theocratic and backwards looking state would not be as strong. And that ideal -- even if it has not yet been realized, as symbolized in the underpinnings of the Constitution of the Republic of Turkey, is something many of the more secular leaders of the current 'Arab Spring' look to as a positive guide and model.

Cynthia (frequently also BWRH)
formerly of HK BCC now HK SAR PRC

Edited at 2012-12-04 18:52 (UTC)
( 2 comments — Leave a comment )