LGBT History Month

lgbt hm bannerThis February I was happy to be guest speaker at a couple of events for LGBT History Month. 

The first, the National Festival of LGBT History, sprawled across three days and four venues – two community centres, a library and a museum.  The second was one of a series of talks organised by the local university LGBT staff network.

Both got similar speeches: the last 35 years of bi organising in the UK and 25 years of local bi groups in Manchester.  How our communities have rubbed along with the rest of LGBT, how people have denied bis existed, and how change has slowly been acheived.

Where it got interesting each time was the step to Q&A with the audience. Throwaway remarks got picked up on – had gay venues really had “no bisexuals” door policies? Surely that was a long time ago! How had people got around those problems?

It reminded me of going to see the recent film Pride about the 1984 coal miners’ strike, and gay community fundraising to support the striking miners.

For me, growing up in the South Wales coalfield in the 80s and finding the LGBT scene at the very start of the 90s, the story of how the strikers got support was just common folklore back then.  But when the film came out, hardly anyone around me seemed to know or remember about it all.

Having been around LGBT scenes and awareness of biphobia for the last 20 years or so, you forget how much you’ve seen let alone how much you’ve forgotten.

We really need to write more things down, before we all forget them.