A Paris Zoo unveiled on Wednesday an organism that has nearly 720 sexes.
Dubbed the “blob,” the brainless slime mold will be on exhibit at the Paris Zoological Park starting Saturday, Reuters reported.
#Paris zoo unveils the "Blob", slime mould (Physarum polycephalum), a single-celled organism with no brain but 720 sexes. The small living being which looks like a fungus but acts like an animal, can move without legs or wings and heals itself in two minutes if cut in half. pic.twitter.com/CjGBgXfr2H
— Beyond Galaxies 🔅 (@_beyondgalaxies) October 17, 2019
Physarum polycephalum, the organism’s scientific name, is mouthless, eyeless and has no stomach – but can detect and digest food.
While the unicellular “blob” looks like a fungus, it behaves like an animal.
The “blob” can also heal itself within two minutes after being cut in half and moves without legs.
Bruno David, director of the Paris Museum of Natural History, told Reuters the “blob is a living being which belongs to one of nature’s mysteries.”
“It surprises us because it has no brain but is able to learn (…) and if you merge two blobs, the one that has learned will transmit its knowledge to the other,” David added.
“It’s almost like biology isn’t binary”
Pro-LGBT commenters on Twitter responded to reports on the “blob” by drawing a parallel between the organism’s many “sexes” and the ongoing cultural debate over gender and biological sex.
Some transgender individuals referenced the “blob’s” 720 sexes in their Twitter handles.
Many took digs at so-called “fundamentalists” who believe that sex and gender are binary.
Fundamentalists: There are only two genders
Nature: Hold my beer https://t.co/c0XBc0dvMt
— דער ייִדישער קלל 🖖🏻👻🖖🏻 (@JewishWorker) October 16, 2019
“The next time you see a reactionary sh-tlord make an appeal to nature (i.e lobsters) just spam them with blob links and throw them on mute,” wrote one commenter, who announced his preferred pronouns in his Twitter profile.
“There are only two genders! It’s biology!” tweeted transgender activist Amelia Gapin.
“Cishets: tHeRe aRe oNLy tWo sExEs This blob, an intellectual: bitch please,” wrote nonbinary writer Amanda Rye.
Republicans insist that the slim mold use the bathroom of their gender at birth https://t.co/ZfKQapHdlk
— David Roualdes (@droualdes) October 17, 2019
“BUT 2+ HUMAN GENDERS IS UNFATHOMABLE & ALSO DANGEROUS TO WOMENS SHELTERS I GUESS??” quipped another Twitter user.
bUT tHerE ArE oNlY 2 geNdeRs! ItS sCiEncE!https://t.co/aUwC2butPE
— Robby🌿 (@robambrose1) October 17, 2019
“It’s almost like biology isn’t binary,” tweeted still another commenter.
But as other users noted, the “blob’s” genetic make-up isn’t exactly analogous to human biology:
The claim that a species has anything like "720 sexes" is so reductive it's incomprehensible. But this explanation of what's going on is probably either more incomprehensible or too tedious for most readers. Suffice it to say, it's a really weird organism. https://t.co/yP785BTpqr pic.twitter.com/k1EAQO9XE8
— southpaw (@nycsouthpaw) October 17, 2019
And some found humor in the situation:
This is the future liberals want.
— Hum-qua-ti-saa (@gauthierbrad) October 17, 2019
“How dare they assume the number of sexes is finite,” said Washington Examiner columnist Brad Polumbo in a tongue-in-cheek tweet.
“The working name for the beast is Progressive Twitter, at least until they come up with something catchier,” tweeted Daily Telegraph editor James Morrow.