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Prejudiced for fighting Heterosexism

Prejudiced for fighting Heterosexism

America is the land of the free. It explains why many political opponents pursued by their governments are often seen eloping to America. It is the land of the free because people facing injustices, totalitarianism, dictatorship, and any other form of human rights violation often come to America to seek refuge from the purges against the rights and freedom of their person. With this notion in mind, it bothers me when I see people in this country throwing aside the famous words and phrases from our founding fathers and the constitution that insists upon upholding the rights of every single person and the ultimate pursuit of happiness.

As a white person, initially, I may not have experienced the brunt of racism. Still, heterosexism, which essentially entails judging people who are gay or with other sexual preferences and discriminating against them, brought me into close quarters with the notion of racism and the weight of prejudice. I have a few friends who identify themselves as lesbians, and I have met some of their friends who are gay, also. There was nothing wrong with their thinking or how they handled their day-to-day activities by interacting with them. They were not psychologically impaired or halfwits in any way. They are ordinary people like all of us, and if they do not identify by their sexual preferences, one cannot tell if they are essentially heterosexual or gay. It means that they are ordinary people like everyone else, but in their pursuit of happiness, they choose their sexual preference, which does not give other people the right to discriminate against them. There was a time I joined my friends for an LGBTQ (Lesbians, Gays, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer) protest they held in campaigning against being discriminated against, and I held up banners that rebuked the practice and had a picture taken of myself holding the banner. I intended to use it to sensitize people on social media platforms. It was then that insults began coming my way. Some said that I wanted to publicize myself by hinging on the LGBTQ movement to put myself forward as an activist for a movement when I was not a member of this community facing discrimination. Others claimed I was trying to be famous for weakening my resolve. There was so much hate, and I often wondered why. Why would people bother with others when they are not being bothered by them? I marveled. It is always unimaginable that these persons are often discriminated against in schools, labor markets, and hospitals and disowned by families. Some have been singled out and physically attacked, while others are “…beaten, sexually assaulted, tortured and killed” (“OHCHR | Combating discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity”, 2021).

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At one point, some close friends of mine, relatives, and even church members asked me to stop speaking much on it as it was “unnatural and immoral.” They even argued that I might be mistaken for being a lesbian myself. I realized one thing. It was not about me but rather about them feeling the shame of associating with me. My perspective on this issue is that everyone should have the right to do as they please as long as it does not infringe on other people’s rights. If we were born in a society that allows gay practices, it surely would be a new normal for everyone. But this is America, and if the constitution is to be followed, two consenting adults have every right to engage in their sexual preferences without being subjected to discrimination and being put at risk of persecution. The Church should also stop being rigid in its practices. They should also practice tolerance rather than holding on to views that are in essence inapplicable in modern-day society. The world is changing, and we have to change with it. We have to let go of the old ways that only bring chaos. Doubtless, the LGBTQ movement has been growing over the past decade, and its population is increasing daily. As such, I feel confident that the very persons we are fighting today to suppress their rights will have tremendous support in the coming decades, and their population so large that they will be able to vote on certain policies. The world will accept their rights as basic and fundamental. It will not be very long before the marginalized seize control. However, this should not be misinterpreted. I am saying that we should all change voluntarily rather than waiting for the world to change without us.

In some countries, for instance, laws that are firmly against cross-dressing are some of the measures that have been put in place to punish transgender people, which are enforced based on their expression and gender identity. In about 77 countries today, there are discriminatory laws that criminalize and criticize same-sex relationships that are private. Persons caught engaging in these practices are often exposed to several risks, including arrest, prosecution, and imprisonment. In about five countries, the penalty is death.

However, America should be different when it comes to these matters. There has to be tolerance for everyone. The media constantly puts its focus on racism. It is not to say that racism is not an important issue. It is a crucial problem that needs to be uprooted from society, just as heterosexism should. One cannot claim not to be racist and insist that they are fair people when they discriminate against people based on their sexual preference. That is not very honest. Social scientists have tried to explain why many people harbor homophobic feelings, and they have come up with two explanations for this hate. It could be either because of empirical data or theoretical speculations. The theoretical perspective involves more about the personal prejudice that a writer has against homosexuality than society’s reaction to it. A study maintains that “being repulsed by the idea of intimate contact with a member of the same sex is instinctive and exists more strongly in men than in women” (Herek, 1984). It is riveting to note that in cultures where homosexuality is found, the instinctual aversion was overwhelmed by habit.

When people attacked me on my various social media accounts, since I hurt, I would not give up on a cause that I believe is right. I also believe that the Church in America is opposed to the “unnatural practice” because homosexuality was associated with idolatry and was seen as a sin. People should refrain from engaging in those practices. Some scientists believe that heterosexual orientation is not limited to biological causes, but instead, it extends to the societal prohibitions on homosexuality and parental influence. All men and women have a potent attraction towards their parents of the same sex, and these feelings later subside to diminish the Oedipus complex. However, the repression of these attractions is not entirely diminished. The fact that heterosexual men hate and hostility towards homosexuality is, in essence, “…reaction-formations and symptomatic of defense against affection for the same sex” (Herek, 1984). With this in mind, it suffices to say that no one is homophobic on closer examination. We need to awaken from prejudice, bias, and hypocritical behavior.

Lastly, it is vital to point out that from my experience where I encountered criticism from the online community, it pales in comparison to what some of my friends who are actually transgender went through. They were physically assaulted and barred from getting into some of the social amenities. One transgender individual went to the washrooms that belonged to the females. A woman screamed that a man wanted to rape her. As a crowd surged outside, asking him to come out, the transgender refused, citing his safety, and insisted that the police be around first. The agitated mob went in and dragged the poor individual outside and tried to take the clothes off “to prove their gender.” Such barbaric behaviors have to be removed by educating the public on tolerance to prevent such gross and inhumane treatment of free citizens of the United States. A change should start here and ripple throughout the world—tolerance for everyone.

References

Herek, G. (1984). The Roots Of Homophobia – Hating Gays – An Overview Of Scientific Studies | Assault On Gay America | FRONTLINE | PBS. Pbs.org. https://to.pbs.org/3jWGKUa

OHCHR | Combating discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity. Ohchr.org. (2021). https://www.ohchr.org/en/issues/discrimination/pages/lgbt.aspx.

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Question 


Discuss a time or incident where you were discriminated against because of your involvement with and/or membership in a particular culture, group, or organization. Your discussion should include some form of racism, heterosexism, ageism, sexism, etc. This assignment is to be typed, double-spaced, with standard one-inch margins, and in APA format (4-5 pages).

Prejudiced for fighting Heterosexism

Prejudiced for fighting Heterosexism

Submit your assignment as an attached Word document.
Discuss the following:
The ism(s) experienced.
Your perspectives on the issues involved.
Your reaction(s), including any action taken.
How does your selected experience(s) compare and contrast with what others in similar situations have gone through?

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