Homosexuality in America
“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.” These words were written, by our Founding Fathers, in the pursuit of freedom from a forced lifestyle and religion. Yet,against every ideal this country, America, was founded from, homosexuality is still not widely accepted in America’s social and religious societies; homosexuals are people too and deserve the same respect as every other citizen.
Many people believe that marriage is just a legal companionship, and that homosexuals need the government’s approval to become a “married couple.” But in truth, “marriage” is also a religious union. The Bible does not describe homosexuality as a “greater” sin than any other. The Bible translates that All sin is offensive to God. Homosexuality is just one of the many things listed in 1 Corinthians 6:9-10 that will keep a person from “the kingdom of God”. According to the Bible, God’s forgiveness is just as available to a homosexual as it is to an adulterer, idol worshipper, murderer, thief, etc. God also promises the strength for victory over sin, including homosexuality, to all those who will believe in Jesus Christ for their salvation (1 Corinthians 6:11; 2 Corinthians 5:17; Philippians 4:13).. According to the Holy Bible, marriage is recorded in Genesis 2:23-24: "The man said, ‘This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called “woman,” for she was taken out of man.’ For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and they will become one flesh." This translates that marriage is just a union to pro-create.
“Gender, race and impairment all relate to what a person is, whereas homosexuality relates to what a person does.” (Lansdown, A., The 'Rights' of Homosexuals, Life News, p. 1, February 1995.) Though there are studies that show homosexuality might be a choice, some things you CANNOT choose. For example, if you go out with a friend and order a vanilla ice cream cone, and your friend questions your motives, how would you respond? It’s that you like, or maybe love, vanilla. You don’t know why you like it, you just do. Now apply that to homosexual’s preferences. It’s not that they completely choose to be that way, it’s how they feel.
Harassment is a major issue all homosexuals deal with on a daily basis. From verbal harassment to acts of hate, people who are against homosexuality, from gays to transsexual, seem to torment them in almost every way possible.
Verbal harassment is a very common form of bullying towards homosexuals; statements such as “Dude, you’re so gay,” are very hurtful and in some cases, emotionally damaging. A statement like that is mild compared to the other slander used by American citizens today. “So I am gay. Why does everyone hate me because of that…. I have been punched and spit on and called faggot, queer, loser, pussy, fag boy.” (Anonymous-Suicide Note) A sixteen year-old boy wrote this before attempting suicide, due to the constant harassment at his school. Luckily, he was found and immediately rushed to the hospital. Others, though, are not so lucky.
For some, the verbal harassment is not enough. Many people resort to actual Acts of Hate. Most acts being very severe, such as physical violence. Numerous hate crime cases have been reported around the country. An example of one of those cases is Michael Shepard, who was beaten and left for dead after he admitted his sexual orientation. On October 7, 1998, Michael Shepard met two men at the Fireside Lounge in Laramie, Wyoming. McKinney and Henderson offered Shepard a ride in their car. After admitting he was gay, Shepard was robbed, “pistol whipped”, tortured, tied to a fence in a remote, rural area, and left to die. He was discovered 18 hours later, still tied to the fence. At the time of discovery, Shepard was still alive in a coma, but he was pronounced dead at 12:53 a.m. on October 12, 1998. Violence like such should never be tolerated and practiced against a fellow American, assault is a crime, yet people support it as such.
Around the Country, you hear many stories regarding hate towards homosexuals. Though there are many cases of such, there are many citizens in America that are Pro-Gay! Everyday at least one person in the United States is trying to make a difference. Whether it is in the government, or through our everyday lives, America is slowly carving a “Path forward” in the future.
The US Government is playing a big part in fight against gay discrimination; they have made many changes in laws and bills regarding gay rights. “The US military's 'don't ask, don't tell' policy, signed by former president Bill Clinton in 1993, policy prohibits anyone who "demonstrate(s) a propensity or intent to engage in homosexual acts ‘from serving in the armed forces because ’it would create an unacceptable risk to the high standards of morale, good order and discipline, and unit cohesion that are the essence of military capability.’" (Ramon Johnson, About.com Guide) But for the past few years, the government is making an effort to change all that.
On January 27, 2010 at 11:58 pm, President Barack Obama made a speech regarding the “Don’t ask, Don’t tell Policy”. "This year, I will work with Congress and our military to finally repeal the law that denies gay Americans the right to serve the country they love because of who they are."
Harvey Bernard Milk (May 22, 1930 – November 27, 1978) was an American politician who became the first openly gay man to be elected to public office in California, when he won a seat on the San Francisco Board of Supervisors. Politics and gay activism were not his early interests; he was not open about his homosexuality and did not participate in civic matters until around age 40, after his experiences in the counterculture of the 1960s. Milk served 11 months in office and was responsible for passing a stringent gay rights ordinance for the city.
There are many national organizations available for anyone to participate in. One organization is The Gay-Straight Alliance. The Gay-Straight Alliance is a student organization that brings together both homosexuals and heterosexuals support gay rights.
The Gay-Straight Alliance support and hold many different “protests and actions”. For example, once everyApril, students across America participate (by their own choice) in the Day of Silence. Founded in 1996, the Day of Silence has become the largest single student-led action towards creating safer schools for all, regardless of sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression. Another organization is Sage (Services and advocacy for Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Elders). Sage holds fundraisers and other events to support elderly homosexual individuals and couples.
According to the bible and extreme prejudice, homosexuality should not be tolerated. People have “bashed” the homosexual lifestyle and what they believe in. But there are human beings out there that approve and try to help in any way they can to gain national acceptance from New Jersey to California.