September 11, 2009

Are Bisexual Organizations Dropping the Ball?

Joshua Lynsen writes in the Washington Blade that bisexual organizations that often complain about being left out of LGBT advocacy initiatives has a golden opportunity to step up and get involved in the upcoming National Equality March, but have so far failed to do so:

I was disappointed — and more than a bit surprised — to see no bisexual organizations on this week’s updated list of National Equality March endorsers. I think that omission reflects very, very poorly on the bi community.

For whatever reason, no national bi organization or local bi group has yet seen fit to supportively attach their name to what is quickly becoming the year’s most important LGBT gathering. This despite the fact that event planners explicitly included bisexuals in their one, simple demand: Full federal equality for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender Americans in all matters governed by civil law.

The resulting conundrum is one I don’t understand. Why can’t bisexual organizations make the effort to support an event that’s making the effort to support bisexuals?
Bi activists often talk at length about bisexual erasure, the tendency to actively or accidentally omit bisexuals from many stations in life. Whether it’s a reporter misidentifying a bi woman as a lesbian, or people presuming me to be straight because the love of my life is a woman, bisexual erasure is agitating. It often forces bisexuals into the awkward position of reminding the world that we exist.

But now that bi organizations have a golden opportunity to join the big event and lend their name to this historic day, how do they respond? With something akin to a shoulder shrug. It’s as though the girl who long lamented that she wasn’t asked to the party was invited to join — and now suddenly isn’t sure if she wants to go.

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