Lately, we’ve gained a substantial amount of insight on the LGBTQ community. Even then, we still fail to develop a proper understanding of what it means to be part of such a large community, and in most cases people just don’t care to know. Whether you recognize yourself as gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, pansexual, or even queer, in America you aren’t treated fair. Automatically, if you are associated with being LGBTQ, one is given a strong and everlasting label. In the country we fail to treat these individuals as individuals. It is very evident that equality doesn’t exist amongst these individuals. And as a society, we fail the people who are part of the LGBTQ community as we should treat them as just another person because a lot of aspects of society aren’t in support of the LGBTQ community and treat others better off.
Society as a whole formulates false opinions when it comes to the lives of these human beings. These men and women are just like any other person in this world. People don’t ‘choose’ to be gay, they live the way they were born. We label people, why can’t a transgender man just be a man who’s transgender? We have formulated a thing whereas men should only be with women and women should only be with men. Majority of the population around us condemns homosexual behavior in general. As I’ve heard people say many times, “Oh they’re just going through a phase, they’re not really gay,” this is false. Out of all of the people in the world, men and women who are part of the LGBTQ seek to spread love and appreciation to others surrounding them, yet we undermine these people and degrade them for being their true self and live a life full of authenticity. Day in and day out we here “ewwk, he’s gay,” “she better not talk to me because she’s gay,” “oh my god, that’s a tranny,” “what the *@#! Is wrong them?” To devise such critical comments and opinions when it comes to others is harsh. We are our biggest critics.
To continue, one topic that has been lingering among our communities is gay marriage. For awhile, gay marriage was not legal in majority of the United States. People pushed for same-sex marriage and soon it became a federal issue. In section 3 of DOMA, marriage was defined as “a union between one man and one woman.” Later, this 1996 law was seen as being unconstitutional. In the landmark 2015 case Obergefell v. Hodges, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that all state bans on same-sex marriage were unconstitutional, making gay marriage legal throughout America. This ruling was after many struggles and setbacks. We recognize gay marriage as a civil-union while on the other hand we recognize heterosexual marriage as a marriage. When a male marries a male, or female marry female, we refer to them as partners whereas when a man marries a woman we refer to them as husband and wife. Even with a law in place that legalizes same-sex marriage, some venues will not allow gay couples to host their wedding in that particular place. Even though marriage amongst gay couples is legalized, once they get married, they lose a lot of resources and benefits. For federal purposes, even legally married same-sex couples aren’t legally married.Yes, we may be making changes to better things for people part of the LGBTQ, but as a society, are we really taking steps forwards or progressing?
On another note, there are several laws in place that are solely for the LGBTQ community. There are several ways that even our ‘regular’ laws ahrm the LGBTQ community. The struggle for legal equality for LGBT people rests on several fundamental constitutional principles. A state governor revoked health benefit from gay and lesbian partners of state employees, benefits in which they had previously received. Also, there are many anti-discriminatory laws in place whereas you can not be judged based on your race, color, sexual orientation, etc. With that being said, an individual can be fired from their workplace for being gay or lesbian. Same-sex couples don’t receive full-marriage equality. Laws prevent them from filing taxes together and generally married couples file them jointly. LGBTQ couples must put out a lot of money to ‘protect’ their marriage in a way. They must draw up documents, primarily will and trusts. Because of DOMA, social security death benefits do not go to the surviving partner of a same-sex couple. To tie this in with another controversial topic of immigration, those laws prevent binational couples from being together. Citizens of the United States are allowed to sponsor their spouse which would make them eligible for a green card. They’d be allowed to permanently live and work in this country. Now because of federal immigration laws, and with DOMA applied, same-sex marriages and void. Just think about how the lives of people in the LGBTQ community are made hard just because of their sexual orientation.
Now we can address a huge problem involving the LGBTQ community, acts of hatred. Time and time again these human beings experience such cruel acts of hatred. It can verbal abuse, physical abuse, assault, murder, all because of how they recognize themselves. According to the FBI, “…6,121 incidents reported,1,076 were based on sexual orientation bias and 124 were based on gender identity bias. The number of incidents increase about 8% each year stemming from 2015. One of the worst attacks against the LGBTQ community was the 2016 Pulse Gay Nightclub shooting. This Orlando based club was a prominent place for members of the LGBTQ community to enjoy themselves. In this incident, 53 people suffered non-fatal injuries while 50 people were unfortunately killed. This was the most devastating act of hatred to ever come upon a particular group of people. It was an act that united people throughout this country. Kids are bullied in schools, people randomly assaulted on the streets, verbally abused, and even abandoned. It’s sad that such an outspoken and generally positive group of people are such a big target for violent hate crimes. They aim to spread love yet don’t receive it in return.
All in all, the LGBTQ community faces a harsh reality. We may see society attempting to better things for these men and women, but unfortunately sometimes it just doesn’t work. It’s easy to look at the slight profess we are making as a country, yet we fail to get an in depth realization. Society isn’t equal in the least bit when it comes to the right of gay and lesbian human beings. The societal homophobia that is being generated is ridiculous. We are failing our family, neighbors, peers, coworkers, everybody. People conform to the societal ‘norm.’ There are people in this world who do one slight thing, which small steps always matter, but nobody is doing/changing things to put a dent in equality when it comes to the LGBTQ community. As many say, “Treat others the way you would like to be treated,” and unfortunately that doesn’t apply to everybody.
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