Several friends were asking me about this New York Times article questioning the existence of male bisexuality, Straight, Gay or Lying? Bisexuality Revisited.
So I thought I'd pass on this email I just got from Ron Shuresha, a really nice guy I met in New Orleans and co-editor fo the forthcoming Bi Men: Coming Out Every Which Way.
Michael Bailey = The Man Who Would Be Legit
Michael Bailey, author of the so-called research on bisexual men reported in the New York Times on July 5, 2005, has a history of publishing spurious psychological research which intends to alienate queers and devalue their sexual identity and life experience. His book "The Man Who Would Be Queen" was so discredited among most psychologists as to cost him his dept chairmanship at Northwestern University, disparaged and outraged the US transgender community, and so vehemently declaimed by the GLBTQ intellectual community that the Lambda Literary Foundation withdrew its award of a Lammy (and led LLF president Jim Marks to recently resign). Now, this "expert" Michael Bailey has turned the focus of his distorted xenophobic vision of human sexuality from transgender folks to bisexual men.
Astonishingly, a NY Times article by Benedict Carey, "Bi, Straight, or Lying?" lends credence to Bailey's recently published assertion that bi men experience a disparity of sexual attraction to one gender or another, despite their claims to bisexual identity and activity. The reporter ignores many methodological problems of the research, and seems to have avoided contact with bisexual advocates to present a counterpoint.
More significantly, the NY Times article made no note of a recent, far more scientifically objective, 30,000-word article published in Stanford Law Review, The Epistemic Contract of Bisexual Erasure, brilliantly written by highly esteemed Yale legal scholar Kenji Yoshino. The article concludes that gays and straights ("monosexuals") have made an unspoken and unconscious deal to "erase" bisexuals, to pretend that bisexuality doesn't exist, for differing yet overlapping cultural and political reasons.
Bailey's motivation to conduct questionable research on bi male sexual response in order to create controversy, and the NY Times unquestioning acceptance of his research without adequate response from the bisexual activist community, excellently illustrate Mr Yoshino's premise.
In today’s sexual world, both straight and gay and lesbian communities still often refuse to accept the reality of bisexuality. My forthcoming nonfiction anthology, "Bi Men: Coming Out Every Which Way," confronts head-on the limiting views that bisexuality is a transitional phase of sexual evolution or a simple refusal to accept being either homosexual or straight. This pioneering collection of moving personal essays by bisexual men and those who love them explores what it means to be bisexual in today’s monosexually oriented society. "Bi Men" refutes the denial and lies about bisexual men that people like Michael Bailey attempt to perpetuate.
-- Ron Shuresha