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Look to your left and to your right. Think, for a moment, about the sexuality of
those sitting near you. Hre you sure that they are purely Lesbian and Gay ?
Horn do you know that there are not some elements of bisexuality lurking
underneath the surface. Houi can uie enforce our policy of excluding Bisexuals
from our conference ? Shouldn't there be some questionaire or test to make
sure that no one here has ever felt desire for a person of the opposite sen ?
Perhaps me ought to hire police to make sure that Bisexuals don't sneak in to
our conference. After all, our exclusion policy js_ important. Or is it ???

Listen Lesbians and Gay men (and those silenced Bisexuals who are reading
too )!! Policing of desire is an old technique used by society to keep
threatening sexual categories out of the public view. Our organization, by
perpetuating the exclusion of Bisexuals from its activities and debates, is
participating in this very sort of exclusion and oppression. We are playing
into the already well-stacked hands of a heterosexist society by helping to
perpetuate a myth of "simple" sexuality and easy answers. UJe use the tools
of the oppressors to say that only "pure" Lesbians and Gay men will be able to
fight in our movement.

what does it mean to exclude Bisexual women and men from the NUS Lesbian
and Gay Conference ? It means SILENCING a large group of oppressed sisters
and brothers; telling them that their needs and issues must be dealt with
separately and in a different space, if at all. This assumes that Bisexuals'
issues are indeed different from those of "pure" Lesbian and Gay men. It
assumes that Bisexual men and women are made up of two components, a
"hetero" one and a "homo" one, which must be dealt with sternly and strongly
as two separate parts of the Bisexual individual's personality. This conception
leads to two well-known bisexual myths: 1) that the Bisexual is afraid to let
go of her/his mythical straight element, and 2) that the Bisexual is somehow
tainted by her/his straight bit, and thus unable to understand and correctly
debate Lesbian and Gay issues.

Excluding Bisexuals also complicates the boundary between politics and


welfare. How is NUS providing for the welfare of its Bisexual members ? It is
not. Bisexuals experience similar struggles to Lesbians and Gay men in their
attempts to come to terms with their sexuality. They too must decide whether
to go through the process of coming out, they must decide how and whether
to join the Lesbian Gay, and Bisexual community, they too must endure
heterosexism and anti-gay violence. UJe silence them. For us and them,
Silence=Death.

The exclusion of Bisexuals is not simply threatening to the well-being of


Bisexuals themselves. It is a threat to the continuing momentum of our
powerful and righteous cause. The existence of Biseuuality is a threat to
heterosexism and patriarchy. It challenges the traditional desire of human
beings to categorize people into easy boxes that assure us of their alliances.
Bisexuality is threatening to straights, and some Lesbians and Gays, because
it is not easy. It is an uncomfortable blur between two well-established
camps, and it challenges our easy classification of sexuality.
Sexualitu must be more complicated than these mere words "Lesbian", "gay",
««bisexuag|« and "straight". Surely there are more types of sexual experience
than there' are fish in'th. sea. all of us come from a wide variety of sexua
histories and backgrounds, and many of us have chosen to categorize our
^entities by these words, but we must recognize that one Lesbian experience
s no necessarily the same as another, and two men who call themselves gay
1 " nave two different conceptions of what it means to be that. Women and
men who identify as Bisexuals share an experience of same-sex relationships
That Ts more complicated than the word "bisexual". They are part of the
complicated fabric of the Lesbian, Gay and Bisexual community.

UJe are of all races, male and female, working-class, Irish, Welsh, SjoUish,
disabled, and, yes, Bisexual. Bisexuals are out there amongst us fighting, as
much as we may want to ignore them. They were on the front lines of the Gay
Uberatfon?ront battles of the «70's, they were at Stonewall, and they're with
us still, here todau.
R strong argument is given by some members of our movement that the very
existence of Bisexuals at a conference like this is threatening, especially to
those members of the movement who are female and male Survivors.
Survivors are threatened by the presence of Bisexuals, who, it is argued, bring
with them their dodgy "straight" baggage. This argument can no be
dismissed, because it raises real Issues of inclusion and safety from
harassment. How then to protect Survivors (and others who are threatened by
Bisexuality) from the potential threat of harassment ? We argue that the
answer Is not exclusion of bisexuals. To euclude a broad class of people
perse simply because of their pjOfilLtifll threat smacks of harassment in and
of itself. We argue that, instead of excluding Bisexuals in the registration
form, we ought to print a clear and concise Harassment Code which will
protect visitors to the conference from harassment and threatening
behaviour. This code will make clear the concerns of our membership and
focus on behaviour instead of mere classification by sexuality purity test.

We come together at NUS Conference to share the meaning , political and


social, of our SAME SEH relationships. This is important. We have much hard
work to do in the project of confronting homophobia: to challenge oppression,
violence, sexism, racism, classlsm, and ableism. It is time that we welcome
Bisexuals Into our battle. It is time that they be recognized as full-fledged
participants in the struggle to confront all manifestations of homophobia and
heterosexism. We can't afford to lose their experience and their numbers. R
safe space without bisexuals is not safe for the movement.

LETS STOP
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