When I was in high school, I barely knew that homosexuality existed; it never occurred to me that I actually knew anyone who was gay. Well, except for the female P.E. teachers. Now, says the Washington Post, it’s trendy for teen-age girls to be “heteroflexible,” flirting with lesbianism while also flirting with guys.
(David) Shapiro is head of the Edmund Burke School, a private, college-preparatory program in Northwest Washington. In 2002, Burke held a “diversity day” assembly in which students and teachers stood together in a circle. An adult leader took the group through various exercises, and in one of those, participants were asked to move inside the circle if they defined themselves as gay or lesbian.
One female teacher stepped forward, but no students did.
Then the leader called for those who thought of themselves as bisexual — the broadest label offered. Out of the approximately 60 pupils in the group, 15 obliged: 11 girls and four boys.
Shapiro says he was “astounded” at the number of kids who stepped into the bisexual group. As he thought about it, he concluded that “kids today know the difference between behavior and orientation. They say, ‘I may be behaving in this certain way, but I’ll make up my own mind about who I am in my own time.’ ”
He searches for a comparison. “It’s like saying, ‘Mom, Dad, I’m going to take some courses in science but I’m not sure I want to be a doctor.”
How about, “Mom, Dad, you’re paying to send me to a school that insists I declare my sexuality in public.”
Stories like this make me feel old, cranky and out of it. But perhaps it’s all nonsense. That stat about 5 to 7 percent of the population being gay is bogus. Based on the current research, 2 percent is a reasonable guess.
Update: Maureen Dowd throws the “gayish” girls story into a column about . . . I really have no idea what the column is about. I used to write a newspaper column and I know what it’s like to be low on subject matter after a holiday season, but a professional should try harder than this to have a point, however small.
In this Sun-Sentinel story, Florida girls say they play at being “faux bisexuals” because boys think it’s hot.