Oh, Cynthia!

Posted: January 31, 2012 in bisexuality, homosexuality, Identity, Uncategorized
Tags: , , ,


Cynthia Nixon, who I last week defended for stating her sexuality is her ‘choice’, has gone back on her word.

After a huge amount of hostility and pressure from gay activists and gay media outlets I might add.

Her revised statement reads as follows:

“My recent comments in The New York Times were about me and my personal story of being gay. I believe we all have different ways we came to the gay community and we can’t and shouldn’t be pigeon-holed into one cultural narrative which can be uninclusive and disempowering. However, to the extent that anyone wishes to interpret my words in a strictly legal context I would like to clarify:

“While I don’t often use the word, the technically precise term for my orientation is bisexual. I believe bisexuality is not a choice, it is a fact. What I have ‘chosen’ is to be in a gay relationship.

“As I said in the Times and will say again here, I do, however, believe that most members of our community — as well as the majority of heterosexuals — cannot and do not choose the gender of the persons with whom they seek to have intimate relationships because, unlike me, they are only attracted to one sex.

“Our community is not a monolith, thank goodness, any more than America itself is. I look forward to and will continue to work toward the day when America recognizes all of us as full and equal citizens.”

Whilst I am gutted to say the least she felt the need to revert to the popular and pernicious ‘born this way’ stance, I do have some sympathy for the Sex in The City actress.

The current atmosphere amongst gay rights groups means that bisexual people are treated as if they are either gay, straight or lying. In comparison to the pure states of Gayness and Lesbianism, bisexuality is treated as the poor, and unwelcome relation.

Note Nixon used the word ‘legal’ in her statement above. She may have actually been avoiding legal action here, I wouldn’t put it past some gayist organisations to try and make out that claiming sexuality is a choice is against the law. She also is an actress, and theatre and Hollywood I expect are pretty conservative when it comes to sexuality. She may have been advised to couch her feelings in safer terms to avoid being penalised in her acting career.

The UK Daily Mail joined in the gloating about her change of tack, saying that bisexuality is a fact. Well, yes. But it is a fact we do have some agency over in our lives. Who we have sex with is still up to us as individuals.

The Advocate online magazine illustrated their update with a photo of Nixon bald, when she had cancer treatment. I can’t help but feel they were aiming to humiliate her just a little.

I still defend Cynthia Nixon but I am deeply saddened that she felt she had to go against her own instincts about her own sexuality to please the gay establishment.

  1. Clarence says:

    I don’t see an issue with her clarified statement.

    I don’t think you “choose” to be bisexual, gay, or straight.
    I think a bisexual person can choose which side of their dual sexual interests that they wish to focus on, however.

  2. Clarence says:

    I will agree with you on that. If she honestly doesn’t believe what certain segments of the gay community believe then it was wrong to “bow to pressure” and do what she did.

    I do appreciate you sticking to your guns even though it has often cost you things 😦

  3. Admitting that we all have agency would lead us back to the point of it all: Freedom. But that doesn’t seem to be on many gay minds these days.

  4. Lawrence says:

    I agree that bisexuality is seen as the unwelcome relation to the pure states of gay and straight. However, It seems (in my incredibly limited, mostly online, experiance) that it is striving to achieve the same kind of ‘born this way’ status as the others.

    This saddens me, I’d rather bisexuality stuck two fingers up to sexual identity and sexual essentialism all together. It won’t, and we will continue to roll towards the day when your fixed sexuality is inextricably and publically linked with who you are.

    I have similar thoughts on the term ‘compulsory heterosexuality’. Increasingly, I don’t think heterosexuality is seen as the norm. A lot of people are kind and understanding and try not to assume people are hetero. You can be gay, straight or bi as well, its all fine and cool. I feel that LGBT identity politics will never end compulsory heterosexuality, it is just shifiting it to compulsory fixed sexuality. Fuck that.

    • Matthew says:

      I totally agree with you. But I was one of those people who posted the new Northwestern Study on Facebook saying “hey I exist again.” It was a relief after all that I was experiencing as an out bi man. But I also am disgusted by the implications. Does a bi guy need now to take a porn test to legitimize his sexuality or sexual identity? If they discover a “gay gene” will a gay man need to prove he has the gene to legitimately have gay sex? A large number of gay people do not realize the stupidity of handing over power to this “gay science”. Because it really is not science it is social research, research filled with cultural bias.

      “The most perfidious way of harming a cause consists of defending it deliberately with faulty arguments.”
      Friedrich Nietzsche, The Gay Science, section 191

      • do you know what Nietzsche meant by ‘the gay science’ in that context Matthew? it seems a funny word to use all those years ago!

        • Matthew says:

          fröhliche wissenschafft is the German title can be translated into English in different ways – something like Joyful Science but he is from what I remember referring to poetic techniques that lift the heavy depressed spirit. Something akin to Freuds idea of sublimation. In our discussion it might be best thought of as the “way out of stuckness.”

  5. Titfortat says:

    So, if a girl gets sodomized for most of her youth and makes a decision to never sleep with a man but realizes she needs a lover, its not a choice to have that experience with a woman?

    So, if a guy is in prison for life and realizes he will never have the comforts of a womans body and gets a blowjob from a guy, its not a choice?

    Certain people’s belief systems are just way too fucked up for real life.

    Oops, I had no choice BUT to make that last comment. 😉

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