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GAY IS GOOD

Cynthia Nixon: “I’ve Been Straight And I’ve Been Gay, And Gay Is Better”

I gave a speech recently, an empowerment speech to a gay audience, and it included the line ‘I’ve been straight and I’ve been gay, and gay is better.’ And they tried to get me to change it, because they said it implies that homosexuality can be a choice. And for me, it is a choice.

I understand that for many people it’s not, but for me it’s a choice, and you don’t get to define my gayness for me. A certain section of our community is very concerned that it not be seen as a choice, because if it’s a choice, then we could opt out. I say it doesn’t matter if we flew here or we swam here, it matters that we are here and we are one group and let us stop trying to make a litmus test for who is considered gay and who is not.

As you can tell, I am very annoyed about this issue. Why can’t it be a choice? Why is that any less legitimate? It seems we’re just ceding this point to bigots who are demanding it, and I don’t think that they should define the terms of the debate. I also feel like people think I was walking around in a cloud and didn’t realize I was gay, which I find really offensive. I find it offensive to me, but I also find it offensive to all the men I’ve been out with.

Cynthia Nixon opens up to the New York Times about her midlife switch to lesbianism, after ending a 15-year-long relationship with a man

By:           Evan Mulvihill
On:           Jan 23, 2012
Tagged: ,
  • 122 Comments
    • Alex
      Alex

      YES YES YES SO MUCH WIN THANK YOU CYNTHIA NIXON

      Jan 23, 2012 at 3:08 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • yusiko
      yusiko

      cynthia its not a choice
      you are bisexual
      not someone who switches between sexualities at a whim
      people dont choose to be gay or straight just as they dont choose to be bisexual

      Jan 23, 2012 at 3:14 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • JayKay
      JayKay

      So she’s bisexual. Whoopdee-fuckin-doo, good for her. Big accomplishment.

      Jan 23, 2012 at 3:45 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • JayKay
      JayKay

      …Of course after the way she said it she’s going to be quoted by every anti-gay activist in the country whenever the subject comes up.

      So thanks a lot for that, you irrelevant whore.

      Jan 23, 2012 at 3:47 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Cynthia Lee
      Cynthia Lee

      YES!!!

      It is a choice for many of us and that in no way delegitimises the FACT that for others it is not a choice.

      And what if it was a choice for every one?
      so what?

      Freedom of choice should not be trumped by religous zealotry.

      Jan 23, 2012 at 3:49 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • TomMc
      TomMc

      Why are we still surprised when celebrities say hella stupid things?

      Jan 23, 2012 at 3:52 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • christopher di spirito
      christopher di spirito

      Cynthia Nixon is the one who referred to her partner as a “short man with boobs.” She has a history of making peculiar comments. Soon she will be competing with Anne Heche claiming she was abducted by aliens and spent the summer on Vulcan.

      Jan 23, 2012 at 4:19 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Cam needs to chill maaaan (John From England 2012)
      Cam needs to chill maaaan (John From England 2012)

      Urgh, if this was a male celeb……..

      Jan 23, 2012 at 4:43 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Alan Katz
      Alan Katz

      Those of you who celebrate this disastrous interview are, IMHO, simply out of your minds.

      Her claim that being gay “is a choice” is 1) wrong and 2) fodder for those who want to harm us and deprive us of our rights.

      Orientation is NOT a choice and hers, obviously, is bisexual, not homosexual. By definition, if you’re aroused by both genders, you are bisexual. So, it was an easy choice for her, all she had to pick was a partner.

      Now the bigoted right has new ammunition to bash us as sinners and “perverts” because Ms. Nixon obviously didn’t know what she was talking about and she couldn’t keep her big mouth shut!

      Jan 23, 2012 at 4:47 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Kristopher
      Kristopher

      Her comments are very unfortunate. It arms those who oppose gay marriage and homosexuals in general with evidence that someone can “choose” to be gay, which means they can choose not to. Their argument will be that if Cynthia Nixon can choose to be gay, the rest of the gay community can choose to be straight.

      She should really clarify her comments. Is she really saying that she no longer finds men attractive? That she choose to be a lesbian and ONLY sexually attracted to women?

      “Why can’t it be a choice? Why is that any less legitimate?” Because for the majority of gay people the choice would be between an unauthentic life where they are married to someone of the opposite sex they can’t love fully or being out about their sexuality but condemned by society.

      Jan 23, 2012 at 5:08 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Jeff
      Jeff

      Isn’t sexual freedom important to us? I find Cynthia’s assertion important. The “it’s not a choice” mantra is true for many people, but the mantra tends to include “it’s not a choice, or else I would be straight,” or “It’s not a choice, who would choose this?”. I find that argument to be really stunting and offensive, internalizes inferiority, and doesn’t allow for any critique of change of sexual politics. I think being gay is awesome. Being gay has historically been about more than who you are attracted to. Our communities really pioneered new ways of relating to other people, new ways to live in communities where many kinds of relationships are recognized and appreciated, new forms of art, etc. I think our insights have been great, and straight folks can learn a lot from them. I think we have lost appreciation for how having non-dominant attractions and identities have been really wonderful, and that we are now willing to not challenge dominant forms of forming relationships and living in society (marriage is the most important thing for everyone, only married people should have rights, serving in the military is important no matter how not just the wars we are fighting are and how many non-american queer folk get hurt in the process, and that gays should want the same thing straight poeple do, etc.) T

      I often debated with a friend’s mother who is a Family Institute employee, who framed the debate about “homosexual rights” as whether we think straight and queer sexualities are morally equal or that straight sexualities are morally superior. I found this to be a loaded framework that disadvantaged queer sexualities. Why can’t we at least rhetorically claim moral/ethical values of queer sexualities? Why not say, gay is better than being straight. I’d much rather put the burden of proof on the bigots who deride to show how their lives are better more moral than mine. I’d rather say, until you can show me that, lay off me. And if you can’t show me, than maybe you should take a cue from us sometimes.

      Jan 23, 2012 at 5:15 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • alicia
      alicia

      jesus, people. i’m not going to live my life on the basis of how it might look to (and CERTAINLY not how it might be spun by) my worst enemy, and no one else should have to, either. is our greatest aspiration now to live in such a way that bigots will stop disapproving of us? that’s fucking sad. we don’t always have to cater to the lowest common denominator. identities are complicated, and life is short. you have to say what’s true for you– and you should know that best of all.

      Jan 23, 2012 at 5:30 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Shannon1981
      Shannon1981

      Well, Ms. Cynthia, as someone who tried for years, and was tortured for being born this way, I find your assertions that this is a choice highly offensive and detrimental to our movement for equality. Furthermore, you trivialize and negate the experiences of those of us who have been through that terrible ex gay therapy and were made to feel nothing but self hatred, as if there were something wrong with us. No, Cynthia, you do not get to define our gayness, and to define it in the terms that you have is fucking dangerous and disgusting and goes to show that you are just like all the straight people out there who don’t know what the hell they are talking about with regards to this issue.

      Jan 23, 2012 at 5:31 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • redball
      redball

      @Jeff:

      Just wanted to say it’s not about inferiority if you say, “It’s not a choice; who would choose this in a society like ours that stigmatizes gay people and tells them, starting at a very young age, that they’re abnormal if they are gay and their life has no future if they are gay?”

      Phrasing it that way turns it into an important social commentary. I’ve said it to friends and I’ve always felt comfortable doing that.

      It’s saying, Gays aren’t fucked up; the lack of full gay equality is.

      Jan 23, 2012 at 5:48 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • InscrutableTed
      InscrutableTed

      This is an example of the difference between “gay as an orientation” (an matter of biology and psychology) and “gay as a identity” (a matter of sociology).

      She’s choosing to identify as gay. But her underlying orientation (bisexual) hasn’t changed.

      I’m sympathetic to her, because “gay” is a social construction as much as its an orientation, and Cynthia Nixon shouldn’t have to feel like a second-class member of the gay community. I was dating a bisexual guy for a while, and people always referred to us as “gay”, and it’s just not humanly possible to constantly say “well, actually I’m bisexual”, especially when you’re now gay for all intents and purposes and people are treating you as such.

      Mind you, I have nothing but contempt for all those undergrad lesbians who insist that they’re 100% gay while they date a string of boys.

      Jan 23, 2012 at 5:59 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • InscrutableTed
      InscrutableTed

      By the way, I’m gay, and although it wasn’t my choice to be homosexual (in orientation), at some point I did choose to identify as gay (in social terms).

      That’s very important to me, because I can be proud of something I chose, but I can’t be proud of something I had no choice about.

      Jan 23, 2012 at 6:05 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Alan brickman
      Alan brickman

      Geez..another female making gay seem like a choice…can’t wait for the backlash….

      Jan 23, 2012 at 6:49 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Lefty
      Lefty

      Good for her. The assertion that it isn’t a choice may well be true for most of us, but to use it as a defence against bigots is wrong, I think – it’s a passive stance. To say “I didn’t choose to be this way, you know!” infers that if you had a choice you wouldn’t be gay – and if you had a choice and *would* choose to be gay (as I now would myself) then whether or not it’s a choice is a moot point.
      To say that her comments will now be quoted by anti-gay bigots and therefore it’s a bad thing is ludicrous – who gives a fuck what anti-gay bigots do or don’t say about us – last time I checked they were all FUCKING NUTS anyway.
      Another is Born This Way metality – I believe my sexuality is genetic, at least in part – and I suspect most of us do – but none of us actually knows for sure whether it’s nature or nurture – but it doesn’t matter. It’s another submissive stance.
      Our efforts should be focused on the simple fact that choice or not, genetic or not, there’s nothing wrong with being gay, so however the fuck each of us became the way we are doesn’t matter – we are gay NOW and there’s FUCK ALL WRONG WITH IT.
      Good for Cynthia.

      Jan 23, 2012 at 6:58 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Shannon1981
      Shannon1981

      I guess for me,@Lefty:, the born this way part of my identity is very important to me due to the fact that it was how I finally came full circle, so to speak. In the end, it shouldn’t matter, but the truth is, statements like this are ammunition for those who work against us. People like Cynthia need to realize that and choose their words carefully.

      Jan 23, 2012 at 7:22 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Shannon1981
      Shannon1981

      If she is going to “choose to be gay,” she should make it clear she has chosen it as a social construct, rather than in the genetic orientation context. That could make all the difference.

      Jan 23, 2012 at 7:26 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • jason
      jason

      I find that women tend to use their sexuality as a marketing ploy. This is also reflected in the way they dress when compared to men. If you go to any cocktail function, the women’s clothing will always be more revealing than the men’s.

      Another important fact is that women don’t need to be aroused in order to have sex with a man. She can fake it, basically. Therefore, a woman’s sexual interplay with a man does not always reflect the fact that she is sexually interested – or indeed, oriented – towards him. The biological basis for this cannot be challenged . Therefore, don’t accuse me of misogyny. If you want to blame somebody, blame Mother Nature.

      Therefore, I think what this illustrate s is that women are not good spokespeop le for sexuality in its honest, most purest form. Only a man – especially a gay or bisexual man – is capable of being the best spokespers on. A woman tends to conflate her ability to fake a sexual interest with her sense of sexual self. In fact, her ability to fake is a choice permitted by biology, and not a true part of her sexuality.

      Jan 23, 2012 at 8:52 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • ChrisM
      ChrisM

      @InscrutableTed: I wish Cynthia Nixon had phrased it in the way that you did.

      Certainly the question of whether or not being gay is a choice shouldn’t matter in the debate on gay rights. If we had true freedom, we would be able to choose our sexual orientation without the government discriminating based upon it. But 1) choice DOES matter in the debate and 2) being gay is NOT a choice. It’s hard enough to fight the battle for equality without our side misinforming the other side. Nixon being a bisexual woman who chooses to identify as gay is not the problem. Nixon telling our opponents that being gay is a choice, without making the distinction between orientation and identity, introduces more resistance to our cause. Ideally, it being a choice or not wouldn’t matter. But most bigots aren’t exactly idealistic, and there’s a lot of them.

      Jan 23, 2012 at 8:56 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • brian
      brian

      Jason said:

      “Therefore, I think what this illustrates is that women are not good spokespeople for sexuality in its honest, most purest form. Only a man – especially a gay or bisexual man – is capable of being the best spokesperson. A woman tends to conflate her ability to fake a sexual interest with her sense of sexual self. In fact, her ability to fake is a choice permitted by biology, and not a true part of her sexuality.”

      You are absolutely correct Jason. It frustrates me that gay and bisexual men have ceded their standing to women. Women do NOT have the genuine sexuality of men.

      Jan 23, 2012 at 8:56 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Chuck
      Chuck

      Sexuality is definitely a lot more fluid for most women than it is for men. With guys, it’s either you get it up or you don’t.

      She is biologically bisexual but as has been said chooses to identify as lesbian.

      Jan 23, 2012 at 9:08 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • jason
      jason

      Chuck,

      I disagree with you. I think men are just as, if not more, fluid in their sexuality than women. Men have a much greater libido, don’t forget.

      Perhaps you need to qualify your statement thus: sexuality is definitely a lot more FAKE for most women than it is for men.

      Fake, not fluid. Get it?

      Jan 23, 2012 at 9:28 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • I
      I

      Maybe it’s a choice for bisexuals? To a person who is either gay or straight, what she is saying sounds crazy.

      Jan 23, 2012 at 9:29 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Interesting
      Interesting

      @I: it doesn’t even make sense from the perspective of being bisexual. Someone who is completely straight can’t choose to bisexual either, which I defines as being able to form an emotional attraction to either gender.

      Jan 23, 2012 at 10:19 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • vajazzlesaurus rex
      vajazzlesaurus rex

      Wow, Queerty posts an article about a woman and all the misogynist c*nts crawl out from under their rocks. Must be Monday.

      Jan 23, 2012 at 10:22 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Shannon1981
      Shannon1981

      @jason: While I wholeheartedly dislike what this woman says here, you cannot think all women are like that. Or even a majority. I am a female bodied human who loves other female bodied humans. I can think of nothing more repulsive than sex with a man.

      Jan 23, 2012 at 10:34 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Eric
      Eric

      Good for Cynthia. Finally, a public figure who’s not only proud to say she’s gay but who doesn’t hide behind “but its because I had no choice!”

      To those who accuse her of imposing her definition on their own identities, you sound just like the bigots who say gays are imposing their definitions on straight marriages. She explicitly defines her own gayness and only her own gayness as a choice and acknowledges that for others it is not.

      To those who accuse of feeding the right wing, its those kinds of fears that have been stifling our self-expression for years. If we always toe some line in the sand drawn by bigots, we’ll never be free. We have to fight to erase that line, and it will be hard, but it will be worth it.

      I read a study that asked people to describe why straight couples want to get married and why gay couples want to get married. For straight couples, everyone said it was for love, family, happiness, etc. For gay couples, everyone said it was for lower taxes, legal rights, etc. This is what the modern gay rights movement has done, and that to me is a failure. That’s why I think we need to reframe the debate, to talk about ourselves not as pathetic people begging for some economic and legal advantages that we can’t have because “we’re born this way,” but rather as wonderful, beautiful people who love each other and ourselves and who choose live our lives this way, just as we are.

      And if it doesn’t get better, we get stronger.

      Jan 23, 2012 at 11:04 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Interesting
      Interesting

      @Eric: Your comment is nonsensical:

      choice quote from you

      “To those who accuse her of imposing her definition on their own identities, you sound just like the bigots ”

      So pointing out a problem with her argument makes one a bigot? What next on the ad honinem hit parade. We are are all phobes too?

      The truth is the problem with her statement is that it implies anyone can choose their sexual orientation. Whether she’s straight, gay, bi, or whatever she chooses to call herself is irrelevant. The relevant question from a logical rather than ideological stand point is “whether she is really saying she choose to be attracted or not attracted to me and women?”

      I can’t answer that question for her. but what i can say is that I find it hard to believe that someone chooses to be bay, straight or bi or whatever they want to call themselves. When you think about it. we are animals. Mamamals in fact. The problem with us is that we also have higher cognition and are social animals so we tend to bullshit the biological element with all the otehr shit.

      the key question if i could ask her is this: are you saying you were not intrinsically attracted to the women when you were attracted to them, or the men when you were attracted to them? If you were attracted to both, but at different times, how this not the same as being bisexual?

      Why complicated by claiming it was choice. The only choice was acting on the feelings in each case. or not. but the choice was not “am i attracted to women.” by her logic any straight woman can wake up tomorrow gay out of the blue. that’s a not hollywood fantasy. like the one that says “oh i didn’t know i was gay until i was 50.” Yeah sure. right. Suppression of feelings doesn’t mean a feeling didn’t exist.

      Jan 23, 2012 at 11:25 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Shannon1981
      Shannon1981

      @Interesting: Very true. One can choose to act on sexual feelings or not, to live an authentic life or not…but if she is truly straight but calling herself gay, she is doing the same shit Marcus Bachmann and Ted Haggard and all the rest do, only on the other side.

      I know I didn’t get up one morning after years of dating men and go “I think I’ll lick a pussy today. No more dick.”

      I hardly doubt she did,either. This feels more like a ploy for attention than anything else, or some weird desire to be gay because it is somehow hip and trendy or whatnot. In other words, she’s living a version of the farce we are working so hard to keep people from living, only on the other side of the coin, thus trivializing the experiences of those of us who are really gay.

      I actually suspect she is bisexual. If that is the case, she needs to call herself that and stop co opting a label that is so clearly not hers to take.

      Jan 23, 2012 at 11:35 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Interesting
      Interesting

      @Shannon1981: While I agree in part, I want to point out I don’t so much care about the labels, as much as the notion that she’s arguing its all choice. That there is no complexity here of biology and environment and psychology that work together to make us who we are. No, I can just wake up tomorrow from what seh seems to be saying and decide I am attracted to women,and to me that’s b.s. So, she can call herself what she wants. The real issue is how she labels what that means as far as choice. Is she seriously trying to say she choose her homosexuality? Its hard to say. Her comments are little flighty, but other than that the real issue I have with is that it misses the point- may be as you say she’s attracted to both. Not sure why she can’t just say I was more attracted to men at one point in my life and now its women. Is she saying that the feelings towareds the men weren’t real?I don’t know. Because its a strange things to argue. If its all juust choice, if she wakes up tomorrow and says I am straight, does that mean she falls out of love with her partner?

      Jan 23, 2012 at 11:44 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Danny
      Danny

      She’s just trying to get publicity. It is sad and pathetic what some folks will do to cling to fading fame (it’s like gay guys who go back in the closet and claim to be straight to win the approval of their parents after they are diagnosed with hiv; pathetic, craven, and self-loathing).

      Jan 23, 2012 at 11:55 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Shannon1981
      Shannon1981

      @Interesting: The choice thing is a dangerous game to play, ever. She’s opening a door for people to go back the dark ages of acceptance of homosexuality when it was treated as some kind of illness.

      IDK, that is something I will always resent. Always. It simply isn’t. She can choose to be “queer by choice” as a political statement, like many have. But to say that the orientation itself is a choice is bullshit, insulting to real gay people, and dangerous.

      Jan 23, 2012 at 11:58 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Interesting
      Interesting

      @Shannon1981: Here’s the problem: choice means a specific thing, but the way she may be using it is now how people think of choice. When they think of choice, they think, its solely choice like between choosing blue and green, or to be religious or not. The way she’s describing it makes it sound exactly like that kind of choice. There are other more complicated choices, but I don’t get that from the statement. Choice can mean “I have these feelings and I am choosing to act on them” That is still a choice, but its not the same kind of choice as choosing blue over green. She may have chosen to act on her feelings for her partner, but I don’t understand how she could have those feelings or the desire to have sex with her girlfriend (or frankly the men before her partner) if she didn’t feel something real toward them. I am not willing to attack her for this. I am willing to say that her answer seems weak. Like she’s not though through what it means. I do agree that there is a tendency to want to make sexuality liquid amongst certain circles. I don’t have a problem witht hat in a social circle,b ut in a political one that can be dangerous to progress. I don’t know if this is what she meant by choice, but it would be a good starting point to ask her did her feelings for her partners really come down to choice. That she just woke up one day liking women, or was it a choice to accept those feelings as a part of the range of other things she made have felt for me in the past?

      Jan 24, 2012 at 12:04 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Shannon1981
      Shannon1981

      @Interesting: I think its clarification… she needs to clarify what she means when she says this. Far be it from me to define anyone’s sexual orientation- after all, she could have been in denial all these years. But nobody can choose to love someone of the opposite or same sex. The way this reads, she just woke up and decided she was gonna be a lesbian one day. Like she threw men out in the same way she would last season’s runway outfits. That’s the feeling that irks me, and makes me think she is trivializing this.

      Jan 24, 2012 at 12:11 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Eric
      Eric

      @Interesting:

      My comparison with “the bigots” was supposed to point out how you think she is talking about your identity when she’s not, she’s only talking about her own. She specifically says that other people might not choose their sexual orientation. Yet you ignore this, and you’re so angry about it. Why are you, and all these other commenters, so angry? What is it about your identity that is so fragile that you need to react in this way to someone who’s trying to identify themselves differently?

      Jan 24, 2012 at 12:11 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Eric
      Eric

      @Shannon1981:

      She never says that she woke up and decided to be a lesbian. She just says it was a choice. Choices don’t always happen overnight, and they’re not always between equal alternatives. We say that someone “chooses” to be a certain profession, but usually that choice develops over many years. We say that someone “chooses” to immigrate, when in reality certain economic, cultural, political, and other factors must have pushed them one way or the other. So why can’t she choose to be gay? Maybe you didn’t choose, but why can’t she?

      Also, note that she never calls herself a lesbian. Only queerty and its commenters do.

      Jan 24, 2012 at 12:19 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Drew
      Drew

      Cynthia Nixon is bisexual and is closeted about her actual sexuality. This also makes her sound like the complete idiot that she is when it comes to human sexuality.

      She could have just said, “I’m a bisexual woman in a monogamous marriage/relationship with a woman.”

      Jan 24, 2012 at 12:38 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Shannon1981
      Shannon1981

      @Eric: Lesbian, gay, same thing. At any rate, sexual orientation is not like a career. This woman has zero understanding of actual human sexuality and everything about this reeks of attention whoring. Choice indeed. If only she could be where some of us have been, she’d understand. To her, being gay is a trend, something to keep her in the spotlight, not who she is.

      Jan 24, 2012 at 12:43 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Shannon1981
      Shannon1981

      @Drew: hell, she might even be straight.

      Jan 24, 2012 at 12:46 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Interesting
      Interesting

      @Eric: You are arguing 2 logical fallacie- the “false choice” and the “ad honinem”- togther.

      Either one accept what is basically the queer theory argument over “sexuality is liquid” or one is a bigot.

      The other choice is that her argument is a poor one, and likely not well thought out given the flighty way she says it although she says she has thought it through. If she did, she might want to figure out a better way of explaining it because the words are strange.

      I disagree with the core argument. So, no, I do not believe she woke up one day, decided, I am going to be gay now. No more than I believe that bisexuals wake up one day attracted to both sexes. Or straights wake up one day saying I am attracted to the opposite. In my formulation the words don’t matter. The labels to not matter. They are approximations trying to get at a deeper point.

      In fact, given the flexibility of the scale that I am working on- that she can be attracted to both sexes being one- and she has been indeed been attracted to both sexes as she admits, your proclaimation that I am being a bigoted to reject her labeling is strange.

      When someone tells me that they have legitimately been attracted to both men and women, I am going to go for Occam’s Razor- they are probably bisexual- even if they say no I am a man who loves men and women as their label. We are just at that point arguing semantics that has some emotional value to them, but says nothing of substance to help me understand them better.

      What she calls choice is that she choose to focus on one over the other. She can call herself whatever she wants. That doesn’t mean I have to buy her argument given the facts of her life. By your logic if someone who is an engineer says “i am an artist” i am supposed to agree because they have choosen a different label to describe the fact they build bridges for a living. I am not buying it. Nor am I buying that its bigotry to say I think her answer is at best confusing, and at worst not well thought out.

      Jan 24, 2012 at 12:47 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Drew
      Drew

      @Shannon-She’s clearly not hetero/straight. I know that a lot of gay men and lesbians are totally heterophobic but Cynthia Nixon is not hetero/straight since she’s partnered to a woman and has sex and sexual attraction to women, as well as men. She should just accept herself and actually come out as being bisexual for once instead of saying how she’s “Lesbian” or “Gay” when she’s not at all. Then again Amber Heard does the exact same thing.

      Jan 24, 2012 at 1:11 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • derek
      derek

      The misogyny and self-righteousness of these comments are INSANE.

      She is NOT telling any of you how you came to be who you are. She is not applying labels to you, nor is she making any sweeping generalizations about a certain group of people. She is speaking from her own experience, and she is ONE HUNDRED PERCENT CORRECT that NOBODY gets to define her gayness except for her. And for her to say it was a choice for her is NOT “dangerous” to anyone, it is NOT sexist towards men (which is impossible, just FYI) and the only people who will try to use this as evidence against the LGBT community are bigots preaching to bigots, it changes nothing.

      What you are doing by calling her a “obviously bi” and a “bitch” is reinforcing a harmful, outdated view of sexuality that the very bigots who you claim to be so against utilize. Sexuality is more fluid for some than others (though social constructs prevent many, many more from every realizing their own fluidity). Many of you are doing to her what you (wrongly) claim she is doing to you, which is knowing your story. So stop it.

      And again, gay males please be more careful when using misogynistic language. Calling women “bitches” “sluts” and “whores” isn’t cute, funny, or OK. Until you let everyone else decide how YOU should feel about the word “faggot”, you don’t get to decide that women need to lighten up when hearing these words.

      Jan 24, 2012 at 1:25 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Nick
      Nick

      [To my queer sisters who might find this post invisibilizing: I realize that queer women are here. I simply believe that I need to talk to men right now, because I think we're the problem. At least the user/moderators removed the blatantly slut-shaming and sexist bullshit "irrelevant whore" comment. That's exactly the kind of caustic shit that's killing us right now.]

      Gentlemen: The reaction of about half the people who chose to comment illustrates the intellectual laziness of the queer community. I am not about to pretend we all agree on very many things, but I feel that you all forgot a couple of basic components of what it is to BE gay. The first among these is the right to self-identity. It only took two posts for someone to declare Cynthia bisexual. She’s a fucking lesbian. You know why? Because she said so. And if that’s not good enough for you, you’re a bad fag. Period. End of story. The second of these is that it’s wrong to lie about who you are, and if you have internalized homophobia, you’re going to lie. If not about yourself, you’ll lie about others.

      If it’s not a choice for you to be gay or bisexual, that’s fine. But if it’s somebody else’s choice that they are, you can’t gainsay that. Nor can you say–as if we’re in the huddle and we can’t let the other “team” know–that we can’t let everyone know that for some people it is a choice. There is literally nothing to be gained in the nature vs. nurture debate. The framing is all fucking wrong. Don’t pretend like we’re engaged in persuasion–as if you’re going to convince people who think that you should go to prison and Lawrence v. Texas was a travesty. We know that people hate us for who we are (and if you don’t, you are charitable to a fault). They aren’t going to hate us less because we “can’t help it.” (How insulting! Don’t you LIKE men???) They hate how you fuck. Get over it. If you tell your enemies you can’t help it, they will just pay some scientists to “prove” you can be “selected out,” “cured” or “treated.” They might throw in “helpfully,” that ex-gay camps are unethical. But nevertheless, the fact that you guys want each other will be shown to be a pathology. On the other hand, “if it’s a choice,” then pretty soon you’ll have to make–gasp–a moral argument about why your love is good and it’s evil to hate. But see, that would require thinking. It might even require tackling the problem of religion in America.

      That’s what you fags who think you’re being “strategic” don’t understand. There’s no way to win arguments with people who deny your humanity. Do you know why the American public is slowly getting to be “tolerant” (I could write a whole essay on how problematic that discourse is) of homosexuality? Go look at the polls, and you will find that not race, not class, but age is the principal factor. Young people are cool(er) about it, and old farts are the worst. The former are being born, and the later are dying. The rest is math.

      Some people hate you whether you chose to like taking it in the ass or your brain was just hard-coded that way, so the least you can do is stop eating each other alive by getting all indignant that somehow Cynthia is selling us out by “giving them fuel.” Are you guys fucking real?

      Jan 24, 2012 at 1:28 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Nick
      Nick

      @Shannon1981: How come you can write so well, understand the principle of charity, and yet have no charity at all?

      Jan 24, 2012 at 1:41 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Farben
      Farben

      First people thought homosexuality is a phase.

      Then people thought bisexuality didn’t really exist.

      Now people think that homosexuality couldn’t possibly be a choice for some.

      When will we stop thinking that human psychology is clear cut.

      Jan 24, 2012 at 3:32 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • newcityspot
      newcityspot

      Still in shock. Is everybody in support of her or defending her having trouble thinking clearly today?

      Gay and Straight? You cannot be both. The equivalent is saying “I was white skinned and then I went black and black is better.”

      There is something fundamentally revolting about every single one of her expressed thoughts. Anyone that cannot see how profoundly flawed her thinking is, may just not realize the severity of her thinking. She is being extremely flippant about a very serious social and civil issue. How can gay or straight be better? What does that even mean? What community is she talking about now with such divisive speech? What is “gayness?” How can she just say “we can opt out” when she’s forgetting that that line of thinking would also imply others can decide whether you’re genuinely gay or not. “Swam here or flew here?” What is she talking about??? Is she trying to say ‘here’ is gay? Did she forget ‘appear’ here? She did the swimming or the flying so she’s still talking about those who did some sexuality migration…which, what is that?

      Who’s the bigot? Gay people that don’t think like her?

      Let me clarify a few things that commenters have missed. First, the writer of the article is being very clear about how he feels about her in the way the article opened (the whole first paragraph). Touches of being an impostor on “To Tell The Truth.” Get it??? Also within the same paragraph you are led to understand that being unnoticed is something she dislikes.

      Later in the article, you find this line: As she sat down for her transformation, Nixon wore a T-shirt her mother gave her, which read: “I am the celebrity you think I look like.”

      Don’t you get how f-ed up this woman is? Her thinking is extremely dangerous, her involvement in the gay community should be terminated and she needs to be publicly exposed as a threat to the progress for gay people. Please understand she is not here to help you, she is here to destroy you and YOUR expense.

      Read the article and use insight into seeing her mental illness and unaddressed issues with her own identity and self-worth – including but not limited to age, fame/recognition, sexuality, relationships… She is a very very sick and unstable person.

      Jan 24, 2012 at 3:36 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • skzip888
      skzip888

      I’m not so worried about what the homophobes might say; I’m worried about what has to go on my dating profile now. Instead of just “Gay”, must I put “exclusive history of cock” to differentiate myself from someone who simply decided to be gay for the time being? Will people who choose become offended if I don’t differentiate myself from them?

      So now sleeping with one gender but acknowledging genuine romantic affection for both is no longer covered by “bisexual”? Is it “Fluid” or “Flexible” now? I don’t know. I’m obviously getting old and set in my stodgy ways at the ripe old age of 28. Tell the elves to go down to the workshop and hammer out a new letter for the anagram; I need a nice glass of scotch and a nap.

      Jan 24, 2012 at 4:43 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • mccutcheon
      mccutcheon

      wow. that is more than just slightly offensive to bisexuals *headdesk*
      I lack words…

      Jan 24, 2012 at 5:26 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Chris
      Chris

      Nobody gets to define my Blackness except for me.

      (Though my skin is oddly pale)

      Obviously “gay” has taken on a social meaning of its own, but “heterosexual orientation”, “homosexual orientation”, and “bisexual orientation” are not subjective things. If these things are all up for individuals to “identify with”, we could never have a rational discussion.

      Jan 24, 2012 at 5:41 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • steve sydney
      steve sydney

      Couldn’t she have just said that she is Bi-sexual and chose to be with a woman??

      Jan 24, 2012 at 5:57 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Shannon1981
      Shannon1981

      @Nick: I have charity where charity is due. This woman’s antics are dangerous. I am with @newcityspot: on this one. She is walking damage. Furthermore, I find her to be a personal affront to real lesbians like myself.

      Jan 24, 2012 at 6:43 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Shannon1981
      Shannon1981

      @Nick: Also, I do understand the concept of “gay” or “queer” as a political/social construct. The problem I have with this woman is this: she is saying she chose her sexual orientation. This is false. This is a statement that is never true. There is a difference between participating in homosexual activity and actually being a homosexual. All statements like hers do is validate those who say we recruit to our side and soon there will be no human race because everyone is banging people of the same sex and not making any babies. You cannot choose this. That would be like saying one chose to be a certain race or height. Same thing. It’s ridiculous, not to mention offensive. The “queer by choice” queers will never know what its like to be a kid, wondering what is wrong with them, why they are so different, terrified of being thrown from their homes. Never. They don’t get to trivialize the struggle of real, authentic, born this way gays. Ever. For any reason. And that is what this person is doing. It is dangerous, it is offensive, and it is a complete affront to all that is authentically queer.

      Jan 24, 2012 at 7:13 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Oh Dear (John From England)
      Oh Dear (John From England)

      How do we know she is a lesbian? She’s only had one relationship with that woman. I think she’s straight.Plus I always wondered why she was chosen as an LGBT spokesperson as she isn’t that bright. But oh well!

      Jan 24, 2012 at 7:20 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Lefty
      Lefty

      I’ve known of gay men who identified as absolutely GAY for years and years (totally out and even politically/socially active in the fight for gay rights) and then fell in love with a woman and got married and had kids etc, the full catastrophe. The obvious response to that (and we see the point made in the comments here) is that they were bisexual all along… and maybe the more cynical response is that they eventaully caved in to social pressure and “conformed”. I’m inclined to take a wider view of people like that – I think some people’s sexuality is rather more fluid and they may be 100% gay at one point in their lives and then, over time, they just change quite naturally. People here saying Cynthia doesn’t understand sexuality, but neither do any of us or anyone else really – we understand our *own* sexuality perhaps and we see our own sexuality reflected in our gay friends and peers, but we shouldn’t make the assumption that what is true for us and for most gay people we know is true for all gay people.
      Obviously, the anger some feel about the assertion that being gay is a choice is perfectly understandable and well-founded: we’ve had to deal with the accusation that what we are is a choice and (this is the important point) that we MUST choose differently, forever – my response to that is that gay people have been through the most barbaric attempts to change what they are in the past (social pressure, emotional and physical abuse, chemical castration, therapy, even electric shock therapy) and I don’t think there’s ever been a convincing documented case where someone has been FORCED to change their sexuality – but that doesn’t negate the possibility that some people – very few, I would say, but some – have changed over time.

      As far as I’m concerned, Cynthia Nixon is “family” and we look after our own before we start worrying about homophobes and what they think of us. She feels she made a choice and she’s saying she prefers being gay. This is a wholly positive thing. Complete unbridled acceptance and *embracing* of being gay – not because she feels she had no choice in the matter, but because she sees being gay as an absolutely positive thing and that’s true PRIDE, I think.

      Jan 24, 2012 at 7:25 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Lefty
      Lefty

      @Oh Dear (John From England): Do you think we should compile a test for real gay people and once they pass they get a certificate? God forbid we have straight impostors going round having sex with members of their own gender.

      Jan 24, 2012 at 7:30 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Lefty
      Lefty

      @Shannon1981: “All statements like hers do is validate those who say we recruit to our side and soon there will be no human race because everyone is banging people of the same sex and not making any babies.”

      But that’s one of the anti-gay arguments that shows the person making it to be a complete and utter loon – the world is grossly overpopulated, the human race will die out through disease, catastrophe or by its own infighting long before it does because people have stopped procreating. Any time someone says that the appropriate response is to laugh in their face and pity their stupidity… not dignify their argument by responding to it, surely?

      Jan 24, 2012 at 7:43 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Lefty
      Lefty

      Also, the inference that she can’t say this or that any of us can’t say or think/feel something is dangerous. Has the fight for freedom for gay people been so that we’re forced into a new conformity? We’re having a healthy discussion because of what she’s said – that’s positive, surely?

      Jan 24, 2012 at 7:49 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Lefty
      Lefty

      @Shannon1981: Sorry for hogging the comments, but I just wanted to say that I agree with everything you say here, but I don’t think she’s trivializing our struggle and I just wanted to reiterate my point that if one gay person thinks or feels something or experiences their sexuality in one way and this is completely unique to them and even runs counter what every single other gay person on the entire planet thinks/feels/experiences that doesn’t negate that one gay person’s experience. What’s true for the vast majority of us may not be true for everyone and the fight for our freedom means freedom for all of us, even those we don’t agree with or whose lives, thoughts and feelings are contrary to the vast majority of us. Or something. :D

      *group hug*

      Jan 24, 2012 at 7:59 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Shannon1981
      Shannon1981

      @Lefty: Of course the people saying this are loons. That doesn’t mean we need to give said loons any ammunition, though. The woman is bi. She can style herself whatever she likes, it doesn’t change facts, and it doesn’t change that what she is saying about homosexuality- hers or anyone’s- being a choice being anything other than a completely offensive and dangerous lie.

      Also, said loons have power. We have seen that. In fact, if loons weren’t in power, we’d have all our rights.

      Jan 24, 2012 at 8:00 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Shannon1981
      Shannon1981

      @Lefty: I don’t mean to try to define her. I guess I just hate that so many of us who really were born this way- our struggles suddenly go out the window when one lady with a platform and something to spout off about validates what we have fought so hard against. If she wishes to “choose” to be “gay”- fine for her. Doesn’t mean she isn’t in denial though. She needs to embrace her bisexuality IMO. She is confusing the masses with these statements, and that is not a good thing at all.

      We, the members of the gay community who are truly kinsey 6 gays, know we didn’t choose it. The fact that she can say something like this at all means she is not a homosexual, yet she presumes to speak for the gay community, a community she really isn’t even a part of. Sleeping with one person of the same sex does not a homosexual make.

      Jan 24, 2012 at 8:07 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • jason
      jason

      The best illustration of the notion that female sexuality is fake is in the women who perform lesbian acts for the benefit of a male. This should immediately tell you that women use their sexuality not for the reason it was intended but to titillate a third party. It is a fake sexuality motivated by the need for attention and ultimately reward from the male.

      This need for a reward is a fundamental aspect of females. As sellers, they need rewards. Their behavior is motivated by rewards. Their self-perceptions are shaped by rewards. They tailor their self-perceptions and behavior to align with the person who is rewarding them.

      Jan 24, 2012 at 8:15 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • The Realist
      The Realist

      “I have been an actor and a thespian, and thespian is better.”@@

      Jan 24, 2012 at 8:17 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • JayKay
      JayKay

      @derek:

      “it is NOT sexist towards men (which is impossible, just FYI)”

      Nice job, with that one imbecilic statement you just rendered anything and everything you’ve ever said and will ever say 100% irrelevant.

      Jan 24, 2012 at 8:32 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • JayKay
      JayKay

      Nice to see Queerty and the usual leftists throwing gay men under the bus in defense of some illogical, nonsensical queer theory fluidity B.S.

      Bottom line: This chucklefuck is dangerous, and she should shut up and act before someone takes her crap seriously.

      Jan 24, 2012 at 8:40 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Lefty
      Lefty

      Nice to see the people I don’t agree with making arguments I don’t agree with, which I will now call B.S. in lieu of a proper argument.

      Bottom line: lka\bclibvd vnhv… sorry, I fell asleep there.

      Jan 24, 2012 at 8:46 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Lefty
      Lefty

      @Shannon1981: I agree with much of what you say and I understand that this is still a contentious inssue particularly in the US atm; plus she has a platform and therefore a louder voice. I keep rereading the statement and it seems fairly considered and articulate – she does say that for many it isn’t a choice – perhaps she should’ve said “for most” – if I were her, I would’ve gone further and said that for everyone she knows it isn’t a choice. I just think this idea that we’re all easily definable may be true for the vast majority of us, but maybe for her what she says is 100% true – even if she’s the only person in the entire world for which it is true. The main thing is, that what she says is a wholly positive thing (if you take out the political aspect of making statements like this in the current climate, which I know is impossible sadly).

      Jan 24, 2012 at 8:57 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Novel
      Novel

      We should stop thinking of sexuality as either/or, and think of it as a continuum. And your place on that continuum might change over time. For example, I am always amazed by people who say they “knew” they were gay at age 5 or so. When I was that age, I was asexual — I thought KISSING was gross! Well, that sure changed when the hormones kicked in. :)

      Some people are absolutely anchored on the L. or G. on the continuum, some are more B. or Q. Some shift. The brain is not static. And aren’t we oppressing those who shift if we insist that they cannot redefine themselves? Isn’t that what the straight community did for so many eons?

      Jan 24, 2012 at 9:24 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • newcityspot
      newcityspot

      She’s a gay impostor. She doesn’t represent homosexuals. Maybe there are 2 kinds of gay people – Homosexuals, and people who engage in homosexual activity. I didn’t have the mechanics to CHOOSE being gay. I never had an erection or attraction while attempting to go straight, to fit in with my parents, peers at school and the world at large’s ideals. So there was no choosing, there was just surrender to my body and it’s sexual attraction, and now I discovered my strength to live the way I’m meant to.

      I do not identify with this woman at all, and now I’m realizing there is a total divide in the gay culture. Perhaps that is why I call myself homosexual and not gay. Gay is a whole culture, a community with it’s norms and it’s too ambiguous to me to be a card carrying member. I have never really been accepted into the gay community.

      This whole set of comments has been wholly disturbing, shaken up my system, but at least the commenters online at Instinct magazine have a majority of thinking the way I do. Perhaps I have found something better than being a part of the commenters here. I am not sure who is reading this anymore. I always thought the comments ranged from the very ignorant to the very astute.

      Jan 24, 2012 at 9:45 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Lefty
      Lefty

      @newcityspot: “This whole set of comments has been wholly disturbing, shaken up my system, but at least the commenters online at Instinct magazine have a majority of thinking the way I do.”

      God forbid anyone should think differently to you. Your whole comment seems to be an argument against the very idea of debate. And anyone who agrees with you is “astute” and anyone who disagrees is “ignorant”. No wonder the commenters on Queerty have shaken your system up. There’s nothing dangerous about debate, you know? Quite the contrary…

      Jan 24, 2012 at 10:16 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • the other Greg
      the other Greg

      This debate is driven mostly by gay men, and most of us want to believe the “born gay” stuff because it seems that way to most of us. It may even be true, for men. But hey, maybe women ARE different.

      Tracy Clark-Flory of Salon.com has chimed in on this one today – well I KNEW she would! – and writes about current research – http://www.salon.com/2012/01/24/when_gay_is_a_choice/ … a couple of paragraphs of it here:

      ***
      More than a decade ago, social psychologist Roy Baumeister proposed the idea of female “erotic plasticity.” In a paper on the subject, he explained that men tend to have rigid sexual preferences that “generally remain the same for the rest of the man’s life.” Women, on the other hand, “are more likely to switch back and forth,” he wrote. “Some heterosexual women may begin to experiment with lesbian activities in their 30s or 40s. Some lesbians begin desiring sex with men after many years of exclusive same-sex orientation.”

      ***
      As popular as the theory of female “erotic plasticity” has become in the field of sex research, it is hardly without its critics; and many researchers are more inclined to highlight the sexual similarities between men and women. But beyond the ongoing scientific debate, there’s a strong political argument to be made against taking an unwavering “born this way” stance. Marta Meana, a clinical psychologist at the University of Nevada Las Vegas who has researched sexual fluidity, believes “it is a devil’s bargain to argue for acceptance on the basis of biology,” she explains. “The ‘I can’t help it’ argument retains the idea that something is amiss. The truly progressive stance is that all people should be treated with respect, dignity and equality regardless of the mechanisms that led them to prefer having consensual sex with one group over another, at any point in time.”

      Jan 24, 2012 at 10:41 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Shannon1981
      Shannon1981

      @the other Greg: Nope, not different here. I am female bodied, and I do not, nor will I ever, identify with the likes of this women. I am offended by her comments and she doesn’t represent me at all. I’ve always been gay, I was born this way, and I don’t care what she has to say about it, she’s a liar and an imposter who doesn’t know what she is talking about.

      Jan 24, 2012 at 11:43 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Oh Dear (John From England)
      Oh Dear (John From England)

      @Lefty: Not at all but I do side with Jason on this one. Women are major attention seekers. And I really don’t think she is a lesbian. I bet my mortgage that she never felt the alienation, sadness and lack of self worth for having same sex attractions as a kid growing up like many gays.

      And look at her in her ivory tower. I’d like th self bitch to say that to the parents f the kid who just committed suicide with her smug elitist grin. ‘he chose to be gay, he chose to kill himself!’

      Jan 24, 2012 at 11:44 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Corn&Porn
      Corn&Porn

      Yeah, Cindy, thanks a whole fucking lot for endorsing the myth that homosexuality is a choice. Now, will you and your husband-with-tits please go away?

      Jan 24, 2012 at 11:49 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Shannon1981
      Shannon1981

      @Oh Dear (John From England): I really wish you guys would not lump all female bodied humans into the category with this woman. She’s a selfish bitch who knows nothing about being a homosexual because she isn’t one. I’d never be like the likes of this bitch.

      I’d love to sit her down and tell her about conversion therapy and losing my family and friends- you know, things she does not nor will ever know anything about, and tell her to tell me to my face that I chose all those things and it’s my own fault.

      Jan 24, 2012 at 11:59 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Interesting
      Interesting

      @Lefty: Forgetting for a second whether she’s right or wrong, you consider her babbling like this ” say it doesn’t matter if we flew here or we swam here, it matters that we are here and we are one group and let us stop trying to make a litmus test for who is considered gay and who is not.” to be someone who is “considered”? She sounds like the typical stereotype of what people think the left looks like. The I refuse labels type. I get it. Its just a little too self indulgent because it does matter it for no other reasons that we would like to know who we are and how we got here. It gives the appearance of “thought” but is actually anti thinking since we aren’t supposed to care because its all just choice anyway. That’s why I say its at best confused. We aren’t supposed try to understand human sexuality because its all just choice and what does it matter- it just is. Huh? Some of us are more curious than that.

      Jan 24, 2012 at 12:22 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Lefty
      Lefty

      @Interesting: You keep saying “it’s all just choice” but she hasn’t said that, has she? She specifically says that for many it isn’t a choice – she’s referring to her own experience no one else’s, as I understand it.
      That part of her statement which you quote: yes, I do think that’s articulate and considered, and for proof of that look no further than many of the comments on here. Some saying she isn’t a “real lesbian” – the litmus test she refers to does seem to exist for some people and it’s irrelevant. I agree with John From England that she probably didn’t have a hard time growing up and does speak from a privileged position, but in my view if she identifies now as gay then she’s gay and her experience is as valid as any other gay person’s. The flipside of that is that her experience is no more important than any other gay person’s, even though she has a platform and a louder voice, as it were.

      Jan 24, 2012 at 12:44 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Lefty
      Lefty

      I don’t know. I don’t why I’m gay or how I became gay and I don’t think any of us really does, so to concentrate on that in any way seems to me a mistake. What I DO know is that there’s nothing wrong with being gay and that I haven’t come across a single argument against being gay that holds any water. I really think this should be how we promote being gay to gay youth: you don’t have to justify yourself or justify being gay to anyone.
      It seems to me that the homophobic element in mainstream society seeks to constantly place us on the defensive and our own self-justification is still defensive (I didn’t choose to be this way) but fuck them… and by the way, “they” couldn’t be happier when we’re arguing amongst ourselves – maybe that’s why this will get a lot of coverage (“Gay People Not Happy With Cynthia Nixon ‘Gay Choice’ Statement!”) – they get to be subtly homophobic while gloating over gay people at odds with each other; win win.
      Maybe Cynthia Nixon is genuinely different in this regard as she says and maybe she’s as thick as pigshit. Who knows?
      To my mind, what she says is quite positive in itself and I think she has a right to be herself and express her experience honestly, but I understand that she has a platform and therefore some responsibility to not be a dickhead – she could have articulated what she said a bit better, but there we are…

      Jan 24, 2012 at 1:00 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Interesting
      Interesting

      @Lefty:Emotional response to her inability to think through issues is not a sign that she is articulate or considered. It is a response to the fact people are trying to provide meaning to a flighty pseudo intellectualism. I don’t care what she identifies as because it does not feel like she’s thought about it more than the typical “sexuality is fluid” argument of queer theory. This only becomes apparent once one takes her at her words, and stops to ask questions like what kind of critical thinking is involved in saying we shouldn’t understand our sexual orientation because it doesn’t matter, which is essentially the point of her quote. Then there’s the more complicated question of what the word “choice” even means to her since we are supposed to not use the common dictionary definition but instead one where she choose her attractions rather than those being naturally something that occurred through interactions with others. It implies a straight person through her process can become gay or vice versa. It surrenders to absurdity once one starts to dig into the weeds of what it all means. But of course,w e aren’t suppsoed tod o that are we? We are supposed to say “it her experience” and that makes it okay. Just because someone has expeirenced something doesn’t make it well thought or articulate. When a gay man says, for example, I didnt know I was gay until I was 50, there is a kind of misdirection in the state. the person saying that is saying they didn’t accept that they were gay because the attraction was there. But we trust that people can always articulate things accurately, and this is mistake. Sometimes they can, and sometimes they can not. HEre i question her ability to articulate what seems to be a different point about what “choice” means.

      Jan 24, 2012 at 1:09 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Cam
      Cam

      I’m sure all those black people are relieved to find out that it’s a choice.

      Seriously though, the fact that Cynthia calls her girlfriend a man seems to me that she either still has some issues, or more likely she is bisexual and confusing it with being gay.

      Jan 24, 2012 at 1:10 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • the other Greg
      the other Greg

      @Cam: Silly argument. No anti-black racist ever had the notion that black people became black by choice. Everyone believed blacks were born that way. AND YET, there was still slavery and still anti-black laws and discrimination for all those years! Go figure.

      Jan 24, 2012 at 1:16 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • the other Greg
      the other Greg

      @Shannon1981: Oh yeah, the hierarchy of victimology. So you’re saying your anecdotal opinions MUST be correct, and all scientific research on this subject SHUT DOWN, because you personally were a victim of conversion therapy and… well, dammit, you say so and it hurts your feelings!

      We’re all sorry you were a victim of conversion therapy, but that’s the extreme edge and your group is (fortunately) not a significant portion of the gay population. A lot of us have our sob stories but we don’t base our entire world view on them.

      If we hear from a woman who was even more of a victim than you were, and she disagrees with you, does she win?

      Jan 24, 2012 at 1:20 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Shannon1981
      Shannon1981

      @Cam: The more I think about this, the more I think the woman is either a hetero- leaning bisexual or completely straight, but co opting the gay label for attention and/or other reasons unknown. In other words, she’s a damn head case.

      Jan 24, 2012 at 1:21 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Shannon1981
      Shannon1981

      @the other Greg: It isn’t about winning. This woman is clearly speaking from a place of privilege for an entire community that is like it or not, largely victimized. She will never be able to look down from her ivory tower of privilege and know what its like to be a part of the real LGBT struggle. Hell, she calls her female partner a “short man with boobs!” This woman isn’t gay. Possibly (read: probably) an attention seeking crazy person, but homosexual she is not.

      Jan 24, 2012 at 1:25 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Lefty
      Lefty

      @Interesting: “Emotional response to her inability to think through issues is not a sign that she is articulate or considered. “

      Not sure what that has to do with what I (or she) said, to be honest.
      Her inability to think through issues is an opinion based purely, it seems to me, on the fact you disagree with her conclusion.

      “It is a response to the fact people are trying to provide meaning to a flighty pseudo intellectualism.”

      I think you’re over-reaching, slightly. :)

      “I don’t care what she identifies as because it does not feel like she’s thought about it more than the typical “sexuality is fluid” argument of queer theory.”

      I’ve seen and read of many examples of the “fluidity” of sexuality – the problem is, it’s always glibly dismissed as mere bisexuality. It’s not a theory, as far as I can see.
      As with the above quotes from your post (and other commenters here) there’s a total refusal to accept that anyone whose experience is unlike yours or those of most people who are gay must either be lying or mistaken – that’s a peculiar kind of conformism, that I find a little startling when it comes from gay people.

      “This only becomes apparent once one takes her at her words, and stops to ask questions like what kind of critical thinking is involved in saying we shouldn’t understand our sexual orientation because it doesn’t matter, which is essentially the point of her quote.”

      Sorry but you’ll have to point out where she infers such a thing, because as far as I can see she doesn’t.

      “Then there’s the more complicated question of what the word “choice” even means to her since we are supposed to not use the common dictionary definition but instead one where she choose her attractions rather than those being naturally something that occurred through interactions with others.”

      I’ve read that sentence 9 times and I still haven’t got a clue what you’re trying to say. Sorry.

      “It implies a straight person through her process can become gay or vice versa.”

      Good – as there’s nothing wrong with being gay, the inference is perfectly acceptable.

      “It surrenders to absurdity once one starts to dig into the weeds of what it all means.”

      Or rather, one tries to create meaning that she never intended.

      “But of course,w e aren’t suppsoed tod o that are we?”

      Not sure who said you weren’t supposed to do that – as far as I can tell, the people saying you/I/she can’t say or do something are those arguing against what she said.

      “We are supposed to say “it her experience” and that makes it okay. Just because someone has expeirenced something doesn’t make it well thought or articulate. When a gay man says, for example, I didnt know I was gay until I was 50, there is a kind of misdirection in the state. the person saying that is saying they didn’t accept that they were gay because the attraction was there. But we trust that people can always articulate things accurately, and this is mistake. Sometimes they can, and sometimes they can not. HEre i question her ability to articulate what seems to be a different point about what “choice” means.”

      Sorry, but this whole paragraph is difficult to parse. “It’s her experience and that makes it okay” – er, yes. If you disagree with that, I’m not sure where else the discussion can go. Further, to disagree with that seems an odd position particularly for a gay person to take.

      Jan 24, 2012 at 1:41 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • jsc
      jsc

      I do not understand this. how can you CHOOSE to be attracted to someone? I am not attracted to women and I cannot imagine that someday I will wake up and choose to be so. This makes no sense.

      She is bi-sexual in the true meaning of the word – attracted to both sexes and acting on it.

      Jan 24, 2012 at 2:34 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Bryan
      Bryan

      @InscrutableTed: @InscrutableTed: This is probably the most meaningful explanation of what she was trying to say without the long paragraphs and high horsiness of some other posts. Thank you.

      Jan 24, 2012 at 3:34 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • The Realist
      The Realist

      OOPS!! Ms. Nixon comes out as bisexual… Again.

      http://www.towleroad.com/2012/01/cynthia-nixon-wont-call-herself-bisexual-because-nobody-likes-the-bisexuals.html#comments

      Jan 24, 2012 at 4:22 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Tommy
      Tommy

      The problem isn’t that she said she has chosen to be gay. The problem is the second part of the statement where she says being gay is better. I’ve never really thought that the only way that we should have equal rights is by proving being gay isn’t a choice. Society protects all kinds of choices like people choosing a certain kind of religion, so why can’t they give rights to people who feel they choose something that is not dangerous to others such as being gay.
      If she had said the opposite that I’ve been gay and I’ve been straight and being straight is better, everyone would say that is wrong. If it sounds wrong the opposite way, then it’s wrong the first way. No sexuality is better or superior to any other one in my book. She should have said being gay is better for her or feels right for her, not it is inherently superior and I would have no issue with what she said.

      Jan 24, 2012 at 5:09 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Johnny
      Johnny

      My Goodness, people, do you really think anyone (on the right or otherwise) really gives a crap where you stick your weiners?! I am 300 lb man. In a mannor of speaking, I chose this for myself. I dang sure wasn’t born this way!
      I can’t understand why those of us who do not approve of homosexuality do not get to have this opinion in peace. we are labled, “Haters”, “Homophobes”, “biggots”. While understanding that there are idiots in every crowd, we should not all be defined as such.
      I do not hate, I love you all.
      I am not afraid of you, in fact I pray for you.
      I am not better than you, nor you me.
      We get it, you’re gay. Here’s your cookie! If you are gay, be gay. I am not and do not need to approve of this lifestyle and you need to stop ramming it down our throats.

      Jan 24, 2012 at 5:18 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Jay
      Jay

      Anne Heche II

      Jan 24, 2012 at 5:30 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Dorothea from Germany
      Dorothea from Germany

      @Tommy: I agree with everything you wrote. This site really needs “thumps up” buttons.

      Jan 24, 2012 at 5:41 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Shannon1981
      Shannon1981

      @Johnny: We aren’t ramming it down your throats, you’re on a gay website. If you disapprove so much, why the fuck are you on a website aimed at gay people?

      Jan 24, 2012 at 5:55 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Dorothea from Germany
      Dorothea from Germany

      @Johnny:
      “I can’t understand why those of us who do not approve of homosexuality do not get to have this opinion in peace.”
      The thing is this:
      You are not a hater when you personally dislike homosexuality.
      However, you are a hater when you want to impose your personal dislike on the rest of the nation through legislation and thereby deny us equal rights.

      “You need to stop ramming it down our throats.”
      If you want us to stop being so pushy, then give us equal rights and we’ll immediately leave you in peace. It’s really that simple!

      Jan 24, 2012 at 6:02 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • The Realist
      The Realist

      @Johnny: If you kept your opinions in peace, that would be fine. The fact that you find it necessary to go on a gay website and voice your opinions on a thread, completely unrelated, says you don’t keep it to yourself.

      For the record; stop imposing you religion and beliefs on our lives and we’ll stop cramming things down your throat. or better yet, get off your knees. it’s really just an open invitation, so to speak.

      Jan 24, 2012 at 6:03 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • InscrutableTed
      InscrutableTed

      @Bryan: Aw, shucks. Thanks.

      Jan 24, 2012 at 7:14 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • InscrutableTed
      InscrutableTed

      @Johnny: It’s fine if you don’t approve. Just as long as you don’t try to interfere with my rights.

      Let’s make a deal. I won’t shove anything down your throat as long as you get out of my way.

      Jan 24, 2012 at 7:19 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • The Realist
      The Realist

      @amazed: Fags? “dikes”(sic)? and you wonder why WE are dicks? Go pray, idiot.

      Jan 24, 2012 at 8:25 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Mike UK
      Mike UK

      @The Realist: wrote: “seriously i didnt intend to go a “gay” site”!!!!! yeah, you keep telling yourself that! me thinks the laddy duth protest to much!!!!

      Jan 24, 2012 at 8:29 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Mike UK
      Mike UK

      sorry above comment should be for “amazed”, it’s late, it’s 12:30 over here! :)

      Jan 24, 2012 at 8:33 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • I
      I

      @ Johnny you’re full of it! You do hate. All people like you know how to do is hate what’s not like you.

      Jan 24, 2012 at 8:48 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Interesting
      Interesting

      @Lefty: If you go look at what she says in addition to this she also says stuff like she’s bisexual but bisexual people don’t have a good reputation,e tc. Its a confused mushy mess. Something for someone like you to pretend you are having a debate rather than dealing with a mushy mess.

      Jan 24, 2012 at 11:15 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Shannon1981
      Shannon1981

      This lady has said all kinds of really weird stuff in the past, ever since she came out as not straight in 2004. Now this. Here, I blogged it. she needs to make up her damn mind. But in the meantime, this is what I think of this debacle.

      http://soyouwanttobealesbian.blogspot.com/2012/01/queer-by-choice-i-dont-think-so.html

      Jan 24, 2012 at 11:29 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Lefty
      Lefty

      @Interesting: People [i]are[/i] having a debate here, dear – you keep dismissing people who disagree with you instead of engaging with that and when you do try to debate you seem to get a bit tongue-tied. The main point of what she said in the quote above is still a positive thing – who cares if she’s as thick as pigshit – take what you can and run with it. :)

      Jan 25, 2012 at 3:44 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Lefty
      Lefty

      @Shannon1981: That’s a great post and again I agree with much of what you say, but we still don’t know if we were “born this way” so our sense of self-validation has to be based on something a bit more than that imo – something a bit less defensive. Maybe it’s nature, maybe it’s nurture and maybe it’s a bit of both – the point is, it shouldn’t matter in a world where being gay is seen truthfully: there’s nothing wrong with it, so if someone is gay then fine –> how they became gay is neither here nor there (“I say it doesn’t matter if we flew here or we swam here, it matters that we are here and we are one group and let us stop trying to make a litmus test for who is considered gay and who is not.”) – that seems to me a very positive statement.
      We have to stop clinging to this defensive, pleading “born this way” crap (maybe we were, maybe we weren’t – it only matters if you pander to homophobes; fuck them).

      Jan 25, 2012 at 4:07 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • R.A.
      R.A.

      I guess “Wit” wasn’t selling enough tickets in advance, so she decided to stir up controversy.

      Jan 25, 2012 at 6:46 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Carl
      Carl

      If Cynthia has a choice then she is bisexual, not gay. I know I am gay and have never had any choice in the matter, although I would not chose to be straight even if I could. Her comments are moronic and arrogant and will be used against us by every right wingtard, bi-bull thumping, anti marriage republican for years to come. What an idiot.

      Jan 25, 2012 at 10:13 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Shannon1981
      Shannon1981

      @Lefty: In a perfect world where we aren’t fight for civil rights, what you say is true. But in this world, her statements are irresponsible.

      Jan 25, 2012 at 10:17 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Cupcakes
      Cupcakes

      I get why CN refuses to identify as bi; it seems that the majority of out bisexuals treat their same sex attractions as some recreational sex experiment while their “real” romantic relationships are with the opposite sex. So bisexuals who truly love both genders get shafted & stereotyped in turn.

      However, identifying as a lesbian and saying it’s a “choice” is problematic as well – as we can see with Sheryl Swoopes. It just gives the bigots something to ride on.

      Jan 25, 2012 at 10:39 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Interesting
      Interesting

      @Lefty: You deserved to be dismissed. She’s Lesbian, but before she was straight. She’s bisexual, but bisexual don’t get a good reputation, so she’s not a bisexual. Only in the mind of someone equally confused could her babbling make any sense, or, rather, people with agendas who don’t particular care what she is saying so long as it stakes out some seemingly sounding like a position they can use. I have a friend. He’s a firm believer in the idea that sexuality is liquid. I disagree but he’s at least clear about it. I sent him this article. He says she’s a confused mess. So, this is not about even that at this point for me. Its about people like you babbling on like you “got what she was saying” although she’s a confused mess.

      Jan 25, 2012 at 12:49 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Megan
      Megan

      Being gay is ABSOLUTELY NOT a choice. I can’t even believe she came out and said that. It is insulting. What she is, is bisexual and she should learn how to say that. She may prefer women over men, and that is her only “choice” as a bisexual. Sorry, Cynthia, but you do NOT speak for gay people!!

      Jan 25, 2012 at 1:46 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • WC
      WC

      I’m straight..african american and completely straight. I find homosexuality repulsive, not the people who do it, but the lifestyle itself. I’m so sick of proponents of homosexuality crying and complaining about wanting gay marriage recognized and feeling that those who oppose it are homophobic. As an african american, I am also repulsed by the constant use of the 60’s Civil Rights Movement as artillery in your fight. People like Emmett Till, Rosa Parks, Dr Martin Luther King Jr, Malcolm X, and many others didn’t march, educate, and ultimately give up their lives so that you could enjoy a lifestyle that God Himself doesn’t even approve of. I know, I know..another person trying to use religion to justify their argument right? Another moral person from the right trying to pass judgement on “poor little you” right? Please!!! The only reason you don’t want God or religion used against your arguments is because you know you have no defense against it. You can’t argue against what God did to Sodom & Gomorrah because of homosexuality. You can’t argue against the fact that God created a man and woman to marry and pro-create and you hate that. You want to destroy the traditional institution of marriage so desperately and you seem to hate anyone who would dare stand up for marriage between a man and a woman. How dare they? Your response would be that you’re doing what makes you happy and why should you wanting to marry another man or another woman bother others so much? Why should you doing this even be an issue? It is because, like you and I, children need their MOTHER & FATHER in their lives. Children aren’t, and will never be, born of 2 women or 2 men. But you insist that its all good huh? It’s not. CN stating that her choice to be gay is just that for her..a choice. I believe it to be true of all gays/lesbians. It’s a choice. You’re not born gay…assuming that it’s not is a slap in the face to God the Creator. Oooh there goes that word again…GOD. Listen, I hate that she made this choice but respect the fact that she can at least be honest and truthful about what it is..a choice. Straight, gay, bisexual….a choice. Leave her alone and please stop trying to force society at large to accept your lifestyle. Like it or not, most of us still want, and enjoy, loving and marrying partners of the opposite sex. After all, that’s the way GOD intended it.

      Jan 25, 2012 at 1:59 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • csw
      csw

      @Shannon1981: what? did you even read what she said? she is defining her own queerness and not trying to define anyone else’s? looks like you are the one trying to define her life for her…

      Jan 25, 2012 at 2:12 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Lefty
      Lefty

      @Interesting: How very interesting. :)

      Jan 25, 2012 at 2:28 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Lefty
      Lefty

      @WC: And yet here you are on a gay blog. When will the penny drop…

      Jan 25, 2012 at 2:30 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Shannon1981
      Shannon1981

      @WC: this is a secular nation. Your religion has no place in government, up to and including civil marriage contracts. Nobody cares what you find repulsive. What we care is that you use your personal beliefs and opinions to try and justify being a homophobic bigot. You are on a gay website. If you find homosexuality so repulsive, why are you here?

      If you wish to live in a theocracy, go to Iran. If you wish to espouse Christian views, go to a Christian website and not a gay one. Whose shoving beliefs down the throats of others now? You come into our space and demand that we see things your way. that is what is shoving beliefs down the throats of others. Not the other way around. You are a bigot and a hypocrite and you have no place here or on any gay website.

      @csw: I read it and I stand by my response.

      Jan 25, 2012 at 2:33 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • Shannon1981
      Shannon1981

      @Cupcakes: My sentiments exactly. In fact, the divide between lesbians and bisexuals is very real indeed. I am guilty, at least to an extent, of this myself. In fact, I have dated bisexual women in the past, and it ended badly, always due to something surrounding their attraction to men. Luckily my current girl friend is a football watching, truck driving, mechanics loving dyke like me. Never any chance of any of that ever again.

      Though I hate that so many out bisexuals give those who would truly have same sex loving relationships a bad name. It is up to those like Cynthia to take the reins and show the world that they aren’t all like that.

      Jan 25, 2012 at 2:40 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • btw
      btw

      Cynthia, You’re a People Effer…aka BI

      Jan 25, 2012 at 3:45 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • GeoG
      GeoG

      @WC: Whether being gay or straight or gay is a choice should not matter. We live in a society that empowers us with the right to choose, and yes WC, even homosexuality. Whether you think its disgusting or not is irrelevant. By the way, you must have a serious hang-up if you troll gay websites trying spread your venom. Aren’t there enough Holier-than-Thou, far-right, Christian website you can spend your time in. At least you’ll get lots of applause for your hatred and ignorance.

      Jan 25, 2012 at 7:17 pm · @ReplyReply to this comment ·
    • LukeJoe
      LukeJoe

      I chose to be gay because vaginas are gross!

      Jan 26, 2012 at 3:30 am · @ReplyReply to this comment ·

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