By Professor Lord Lord – Chief Science Writer
Around the world, bisexuals are celebrating, decking the world in blue, purple and pink – the bisexual pride colours. Usually invisible to the naked eye, every September 23rd they become visible for a 24-hour period.
“That’s why they call it Bi Visibility Day,” says activist Noah Pinion. “It’s a scientific fact that all bisexuals are normally invisible. While we still exist, non-bisexuals don’t interact with us at all; they don’t seem to think we’re there.”
Historically bisexuals have used this invisibility to adapt and survive, being able to silently influence the world around them. “Not magical powers or anything, though some people are convinced we have them,” explains Pinion, “but jobs where discretion is important, or where it’s more important to keep things running smoothly than to have egos getting in the way.” This has resulted in such things as the Association of Bisexual Engineers, who laid the groundwork for the Parallel Universe Project, and the Bisexual Quantum Mechanics Club, an informal, loosely-knit group of physicists whose sexual orientation and research fields are both viewed as confusing.
It’s not just bisexuals who celebrate being visible; your correspondent caught up with Dan and Sue Shiggins, a Great Snoring couple who participated in its very first straight pride event. “Shhh! You can only see them once a year, you know!” Dan whispers as he fiddles with his binoculars. “We’ve never seen them in the wild before,” adds Sue. “I feel just like I’m trekking through the jungle! Isn’t this exciting!” (Your correspondent ought to mention that the Shigginses were in Manchester’s Gay Village, in broad daylight.)
Since gay rights became more widely accepted, scientists have been working tirelessly to discover the mechanism by which bisexuals become invisible. So far their quest has been fruitless, but one upstart scientist thinks he can change this.
“It’s not that bisexuals are invisible, but rather that they’re ignored”, says Douglas Sepp from the Odd Down Institute. “People so badly want to believe that bisexuals don’t exist that their brains block out any evidence.”
Bisexuals who want visibility have a long way to go. Groups like the Association of Bisexual Engineers and the Bisexual Quantum Mechanics Club stand opposed by an eclectic alliance of gay and straight people, united by their denial of bisexuality.
“There is no scriptural support for bisexuality,” fundamentalist Kent Reading tells your correspondent. “Nowhere in Judaeo-Christian Scripture do you find evidence for it. In Levitical law you will find only sodomy, heterosexuality, and bestiality being discussed. Under scrutiny, the arguments for bisexuality fall apart. Someone claiming bisexuality is usually an indecisive homosexual.”
“That male is disgusting. Having said that, I am unhappy about the way some bisexuals come into LGBTQ spaces,” says someone who would only talk to your correspondent anonymously for fear of backlash. “Bisexuals don’t face issues like corrective rape. Bisexuals are allowed to pass as straight and make for ideal straight people fantasies. Bisexuals appropriate our culture. Honestly, they need to get their greedy confused selves out of our spaces.”
Your correspondent is aware that attitudes to bisexuality in the LGBTQ+ community range widely, from acceptance to hostility and erasure, and is also aware that it is easy to tap into tropes of big bad gays and lesbians. But exposing biphobia means exposing all biphobia, regardless of how it might inconvenience some people.
“Am I confused? Yes, every day, but precisely none of that confusion is to do with my sexuality,” says Geoff Cox, a member of the Bisexual Quantum Mechanics Club. “I research confusing concepts for a living. I’m quite qualified to distinguish between things I find confusing and things total strangers think I should find confusing. That said, the idea that we’re greedy floors me. I’ll cobble together a theory of quantum gravity before I understand that. I personally am not religious, but I know of bisexual people who are and who have been supported by their local communities. I understand if not everybody else agrees – but I just want to be treated normally.”
Here’s to bisexuals being visible – and may this visibility last for longer than a day. Maybe two is good to aim for right now.