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- Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual & Transgender
Gay and Lesbian Rights and Love
Discrimination - Not Just a Racial Issue
America is supposed to be the home of the free. This has not always been exactly true. It does not always appear to be a free nation if you happen to reside in the minority of its people. One large group consistently discriminated against happens to be the LGBT group. LGBT stands for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgendered. I currently have several friends in this group, and they have explained to me some of the inequalities that have held them back in society and how they are discriminated against. Some of the problems are obvious, such as marriage and acceptance in society, while some are quite hidden. This group of people should have the same rights and freedoms as everyone else in our society. What needs to be done is to first give them the same treatment legally that everyone else is given. Next, people need to be more accepting and tolerant of the people in this group. Finally, There needs to be more done to integrate these people into our society; I believe the only way to move toward the ideal home of the free is to equally accept everyone and give everyone the same rights.
Gay Marriage - Why is it Still an Issue?
Gay marriage is now a main debate in American society. Currently, gay marriage is only legal in New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Iowa, and Vermont. New York, California, Rhode Island, New Mexico, and Washington, DC recognize marriages performed legally elsewhere. This is a very small portion of American states that actually allow, or even support gay marriages. Even in those states that do allow it, rights vary for the people who do wish to marry. Gay marriage should be legal in all states. Regardless of sexual orientation, if a couple loves each other why not let them marry? There is only one kind of love. It doesn’t matter if it is between a man and a woman or a man and a man or a woman and a woman. More and more people say that allowing same sex marriage is a slippery slope to incest or animal marriage, but incest is illegal and only those who can sign contracts are allowed to marry.
I conducted an interview with one of my friends, who is a bisexual woman. She said on the topic of gay marriage that people should be allowed to marry regardless of gender. If two women or two men want to marry, they should have every right that a straight couple has. She said that she shared the same kind of feelings on love that I did. There is only one type of love. You don’t strictly just love a man if you’re a woman or a woman if you’re a man. You love a person. You love who they are, you love how they think, and you love what they do. You don’t simply love someone because they are a man or a woman; you find someone you are attracted to and love them for who they are on the inside. If someone happens to be attracted to someone from their same gender, why is that different? They should have the same rights, legally, as every other human in our nation. We are all humans, and should be treated equally. My interviewee said she feels persecuted against in this way. She said that their situation is similar to the black rights movement in the 1960’s. Human beings were being treated unfairly and they did something about it. Now is a similar situation in which human beings are again being treated unfairly, and she feels they are working towards fixing it. Marriage should be something two people do when they love each other, and only love should be involved, not orientation.
Tension and Discrimination Among Groups
There is still tension between some straight people and the LGBT community. It seems almost acceptable for some people to question why they are gay, or even tell them that it isn’t really how they feel, but they were trained to feel that way by other homosexuals or by “evil spirits.” It may sound crazy to some, but you do still hear it from some people, and nobody really questions it. It’s just “Oh, it’s how they were raised.” Or, “He or she’s probably just ignorant of their ways.” Some people think that homosexuality is a choice, and that nobody should really be gay. If people are gay, they should still have the same rights, and should be treated the same regardless if it was a choice or not. I don’t feel that most homosexuals choose to be gay just because they want to be, but I suppose there is a possibility of it happening that way. I talked to my interview if she felt she was born bisexual. She answered my question with another question. “Do you feel like you were born straight?” I replied, “yes.” She said, “Well that’s exactly how I feel, and I don’t know why people can’t understand that we are born with certain sexual orientations” I liked the answer to the question because it made me think. If all people who questioned the LGBT community had asked their selves this question I think they could understand a little better how their mindset works. They don’t feel it was a choice, they feel they were born that way. My interviewee went on to talk about other tension in the LGBT community. She said that there is some discontent from them back at straight people. She said that some of them feel if society is going to shun, and look at them differently, they were going to do the same thing back to the straight community. My interviewee said it was like a step in the wrong direction if either side does this. She wants straights and LGBT’s to work together to help make this a better country for everyone in it.
More needs to be done to integrate homosexuals into society as humans and not as people with strange sexual preferences. My interview said that kids need to be taught early on that not everyone has a mommy and a daddy, but parents or even just a parent. The stereotype that all kids should have a mom and a dad starts early on with teachers. Teachers ask who is your mom or who is your dad and what do they do. Not every child now has a mom and a dad, but two moms or two dads or just single parents. If children are taught this from an early age, I think that kids would feel less persecuted or outcast for having different sexual orientations. My interviewee said that if kids are treated like everyone will love them no matter what orientation they are, it would be easy for them to come out and be who they are in society. She also said that the reason a lot of people stay in the closet is because fear that society, either all of society, or their close family and friends won’t accept who they are and love them the same that they would if they were straight. I do feel that this happens a lot and is a serious issue. I think we would have a happier country if everyone was open about what they did and how they feel about one another.
My interviewee even went on to talk about discrimination among different gendered members of the LGBT community. She said that as a woman, she feels less discriminated against than if she was a man. She explained that lesbian and bisexual women are seen as sex objects in our society. Most straight men are not offended, or even go as far as like to watch two women kiss or view all women pornography or similar things. Two men kissing or going farther is disgusting to them, so they are very biased in their feelings about the LGBT community. My interviewee said women usually have an easier time with their sexual orientation, because they are accepted either way. If they are straight or bisexual they are an object for men to seek out, if they are lesbian it’s a free show for all the straight guys. The idea of two men together is just wrong in the eyes of some people. It’s not attractive in any way for a straight man, so they shun it and don’t accept them. I personally feel that love is love, and people should do what makes them feel right. I personally don’t get offended or “creeped” out when two men or two women show public affection for one another. I just feel good that they have found love in some way. With creating equal laws, and treating everyone fairly in society, we could have a better nation.
A lot more needs to be done to better understand and fully create and equal nation for the LGBT community. More needs to be done legally to allow true equality before the law for them. Gay marriage is only allowed in a handful of states, and, even internally, those states are not sure how to handle it. Different laws exist from state to state surrounding gay marriage, and there should be a national allowance of gay marriage. There is only one type of love, and it is not between a man and a woman, but between two people who have that love, regardless of gender, race, sexual orientation, or otherwise. More needs to be done to clear the tension between the LGBT community and the straight community. There is too much unacceptance and prejudice from both sides of the spectrum. We’re all human beings, and we should all be treated as such. The LGBT community is comprised of second-class citizens according to our government. If we were more tolerant as a nation towards this community we could have a much better world to live in. Finally, we could do a lot more to better integrate the LGBT community into our nation as a whole. We need to teach kids early on about it and continue to accept anyone throughout the nation, regardless of sexual orientation. If all of this is done that we could have a better country, not just for the LGBT community, but for all Americans.
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