Homosexuality and how societies deal with homosexual individuals is an issue that has created a great amount of controversy and discussions. It appears that the homosexuals were under “attack” once they had decided to step out of the sealed closed doors and state out loud their sexual preferences, claiming their right for fair treatment and a chance for a happy life with their other half.
Truth is the homosexuals were once considered societal “monsters” and had to be banished from the communities they belonged. They were simply opposed to everything that has been by then established; the morals, the values, the religious beliefs, and people were unable to cope with something that was threatening to dramatically shake the waters of the “approved”. The homosexuals, were subjected to verbal and physical attacks for their sexual preferences and were also considered the carriers of diseases such as AIDS/HIV, which was also believed to be a disease of the homosexuals only.
In terms of legislation, nothing was favoring them; on the contrary, the law had given people the right to lay homosexuals off of work or not hire them at all. The police was also idle, when the homosexuals were victimized for their sexual preferences.
However, in time, the societal concepts for the homosexuals have changed. The problem is not eliminated yet; there are still people that cannot accept the homosexuals as normal human beings. However, the homosexuals live almost normal lives now; just like everybody else, at least in many parts of the world. It is interesting to discuss how homosexuality has found its way in human societies over time, and how people’s mindset has changed, even bit by bit.
The Annotated Bibliography
Somerville, B. Siobhan. Queering the Color Line: Race and the Invention of Homosexuality in American Culture. Duke University Press, 2000. Print
Somerville’s book offers an insightful approach to how homosexuality was first introduced in the American culture, starting from the late 19th century. Somerville uses a wide range of sources to conclude that the understanding of homosexuality is dependent to race, and that race has been central to producing homosexuality within cultures.
It is a book that has dove into the gay and lesbian studies, and African American studies, among many others, only to emerge with facts that race, gender, and sexuality have always been tightly interwoven with one another, and that the film industry has also contributed in shaping the public view, in regards homosexuality, as mostly discussed in Chapters 1 and 2.
Herek, Gregory. Stigma, Prejudice, and Violence Against Lesbians and Gay Men. In John C. Gonsiorek & James D. Weinrich (Eds.) (1991), “Homosexuality: Research implications for public policy” (pp. 60-80). Newbury Park, CA: Sage.
In this article, Herek, talks about the antigay prejudice that is prevalent in societies, and what variables affect this prejudice, including socio-psychological factors, among others. Interestingly, he explores why some heterosexuals are hostile towards the gays and lesbians, from a psychological aspect, as well as the cultural ideologies and stereotypical beliefs that have been long ago dominant in human societies, especially those of the Americans. Furthermore, the problems faced by the homosexuals are introduced, involving employment, services, and housing.
He also suggest possible ways to eliminate homosexual prejudice, and believes that change can come from within education programs. The consequences of antigay prejudice are also discussed.
The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. Inside-OUT: A Report on the Experiences of Lesbians, Gays and Bisexuals in America and the Public’s Views on Issues and Policies Related to Sexual Orientation.
This report is based on the results of two national public opinion surveys, which aimed at gathering information in regards the experiences of the homosexual individuals, and to identify the general public stance, considering the policy issues and their viewpoints on sexual orientation.
According to their results, it appears that people are now more willing to accept the gays and lesbians within their community, as opposed to a few decades ago. However, at the same time, discrimination and prejudice still exists, on a large scale.
It is an interesting report that gives an inside look of the issue of homosexuality, with the experiences of gays, lesbians, and bisexuals, in the US and the problems they had faced in the past, compared to the present. Plus, it provides us an insight of where people now stand, when it comes to the homosexuals.
Cohen, Jon. Gay marriage support hits new high in Post-ABC poll. The Washington Post, 2013. Web.
The article discusses the results of a joint poll, conducted under the umbrella of Washington Post and ABC News, in regards the public’s opinion on gay marriages. According to the results, it seems that Americans are now more open to accept homosexuality as a way some individuals simply are, rather than a choice.
The post breaks down statistics, facts, and data, considering the political viewpoints of people, their state of residence, and age, as a means to try to evaluate the general public opinion better, and reach some first conclusions.