Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Getting "defensive"

As noted previously, I will occasionally respond to a longer comment on a post by starting a new post. This comment was in response to my post on Gay Men, Women, and "Sexual Fluidity:"

Dear Bill, I am very disappointed that we will not be able to continue our discussion in person. I stopped posting because I was invited to be a discussant at the gay/bi debate at the LGBT Center in NYC this Wednesday at 8 PM, and I asked that you be one of the gay discussants, so I thought I would be able to talk to you in person. How unfortunate that you are traveling.

You have illustrated my point exactly in this discussion. Prejudice and privilege is when it is assumed that bad things happen to people because of their inherent badness. I know it is a weird thing for a gay person to wrap his head around the notion that he has gay privilege, but relative to bisexuals and transgender people you do. The things I said to you were all that you were biphobic, or had internalized biphobia. However, you called me rigid, resentful, negative, etc., and let through a comment about posters (and since, I was nearly the only poster, this has to be about me)"can you imagine being attracted to both men and women and you still can't get laid on Saturday night?"

Therefore, I am a bad bisexual, and everything a gay person or Lesbian has ever done to me is my fault; the badness lies in me and my sexual orientation. I challenge you, since you cannot be there, to ask a friend or friends of yours to go to the talk and judge me as a person. See how bitter, resentful, angry, ugly, and unable to get dates I really am (oh, and you also called me immature - I'm 55 years old, BTW). Or are you afraid to see that just maybe gay people do really ugly things to perfectly nice bisexuals, just because they can (just like your insults and name-calling of me illustrates)?

I didn't really engage in what you label "name-calling." I made some judgment calls based on your tone and what you had to say, but I didn't call you "names" like fag or dyke. Frankly, if I called you "rigid" or "resentful" etc. it wasn't name-calling, that was simply how you came across. I have certainly never said that you were a "bad bisexual" or a "bad" anything else. Show me one occasion when I said that it was bad to be bisexual or that bisexuals were bad people! I didn't say what you wanted me to say so that makes me a "bad homosexual guy" in your mind, I guess. Therefore since you see me as a bad, supposedly bi-hating gay guy, that must mean that I see you as a "bad bisexual." Nonsense.

I have a feeling that you're a "late bloomer" because you carry the self-absorbed angst and the jump-to-conclusions attitude that you normally find in the very young, so I suspect you came to terms with your sexuality comparatively recently. [And let me make it clear that immaturity has nothing to do with age.] So while initially I was quite surprised that you're actually older than I am, I think that, in part, explains why I came to my erroneous conclusion. I could be wrong, but I also suspect that at one time you were in love with a lesbian and got very hurt when she broke it off. You're convinced it was because you were bisexual. Maybe. Maybe she didn't buy it, couldn't understand it, or maybe she "just wasn't that into you." I'm not saying it was your fault, or hers, but perhaps you just have to understand that in both gay and straight relationships sometimes they work out and sometimes they don't. I believe there are many bi-identified individuals who are actually in loving, long-time relationships with gay partners.

I, on the other hand, came out in my twenties and was active in the country's first militant gay rights organization, New York's Gay Activists Alliance. [Perhaps the "privilege" that you think you sense in me has more to do with the fact that I've been in this struggle for many more decades that the vast majority of my few detractors.] The president at the time that I joined GAA was bisexual. I don't recall he, I, or anyone else in the group wanting to fight for special privileges just for homosexuals while excluding bisexuals or transsexuals. You hate to hear this, you've been so spoon-fed wrong-headed data by insecure people with agendas, but you just don't have your facts straight [no pun intended].

As far as the person who left the comment about "not getting dates" -- for heavens sake, how paranoid can you be? You were not the only person who left comments and I'm pretty sure the guy was just making a joke and not singling you or anyone else out. I doubt if he even knows you. You continuously fail to see that I have an irreverent sense of humor, possibly because you have none?

Where is it written that all queers have to automatically agree with each other or else they're "phobic" this or "phobic" that? Can there be no questioning, no intelligent discourse, has no one the right to be on occasion politically incorrect or a doubting Thomas about this, that, or the other? This may infuriate you, but you should check out my post on my brother blog about the LGBT community and NPD.

It is my passionate belief that bisexuals and transsexuals, like homosexuals, face far more danger from the religious right and others like them, from all those who hate queers of all stripes, than they do from gay people who may relate more -- understandably -- to other gays than they do to bi's or transsexuals. I see nothing controversial in that viewpoint, but apparently others disagree.

As for that forum you refer to. Funny, how it was never listed in the LGBT center's list of upcoming events. Now I'd sound as paranoid as you if I suggested the whole thing was a set-up, wouldn't I? Believe me, I have been to enough forums over the years -- where people are supposed to have an intelligent, rational discussion -- where all it takes is a couple of irrational people unable to control their emotions to turn the whole thing into a tiresome shouting match. And to turn into a grim, humorless affair and a total bore.

I have a life outside the Internet. I generally allow people to leave comments and send emails, but that doesn't mean I want to continue the discussion out in the real world. Especially with people who for one reason or another may not always be entirely rational on a given subject.


Estraven said...


The event is listed under:

Bi & Gay Communities. About 40 people showed up, including Micah Z. Kellner, the out bisexual New York State Assemblymember. He has said that the three gay Assembly Members practice bisexual erasure on him, acting as though he isn't there or isn't queer. And he can't get dates, even though he is very good-looking, because people google him, and see bisexual and lose interest.

Bill Samuels said...

Thanks for the info. Hope the event went well.

I've met Micah Kellner, briefly. He is good-looking. If he has trouble getting dates it may be that women are afraid he's deep-down really gay [or at least more into men than women] and men may feel just the opposite. If he has a preference or is a 50/50 bi he should make it clear. He would certainly have no trouble picking up men or women on the bar circuit, but being an assemblyman that's problematic... He should go to bisexual socials and maybe that way he can meet an attractive and sympathetic soul.

For the record, I would date Kellner -- or at least fool around with him -- but I think he's a bit out of my league. And too young.

Estraven said...

For another record of the event:


I am on the far right. It went very well, thanks, and I think it was the beginning of what I hope will be further useful discussions. I honor Justen and Polyamorous New York for trying to heal the rifts between the two communities.

Bill Samuels said...

Thank you for providing these links.

Very nice photos!