Berkeley Lawmakers Recognize Bisexual Pride Day
BERKELEY, Calif. - Berkeley on Tuesday became what is thought to be the nation’s first city to officially proclaim a day recognizing bisexuals, a sexual minority that often complains of being derided as sexually confused fence-sitters.
The City Council unanimously and without discussion declared Sept. 23 as Bisexual Pride and Bi Visibility Day. Since 1999, bisexual activists have claimed the date to celebrate their community, and bisexual pride events routinely are held in Los Angeles, Boston, Chicago and other cities across the nation.
Berkeley, however, is believed to be the first U.S. city where a government body has taken the extra step of to formally acknowledge the day, the San Francisco Chronicle reported (http://bit.ly/S4L00p ). Other cities support and participate in gay pride parades held in June and July.
Councilman Kriss Worthington introduced the resolution, telling his colleagues ahead of Tuesday night’s meeting that it was important for the city to support an occasion "conceived as a response to the prejudice and marginalization of the bisexual persons by some in both the straight and greater LGBT communities."
"Increasing bisexual visibility is a way of saying, yes, they do exist, and they deserve our support and acceptance," Worthington said.
The Williams Institute, a think tank at the University of California, Los Angeles, devoted to the study of sexual orientation and the law, estimates that more than 4 million Americans identify as bisexual, more than the number of Americans who identify as gay, lesbian or transgender combined.