Ethnic and Cultural Awareness COUN5334
September 4, 2010
This paper will discuss the discrimination of the lesbian, gay, bi-sexual, and transvestite community, including historically, contemporary, and future antecedents. This paper will also delve into theories, misconceptions, and challenges of the identity development of an LGBT individual. We shall communicate this learners self realizations about the LGBT community and how he can integrate and study them without compromising himself or his beliefs.
This Class And Me13
When looking into the historical antecedents of the current cultural perspective of the lesbian, gay, bi-sexual, and transvestite (LGBT) community, most researchers and authors in queer theory believe the gay civil rights movement began in 1969 with the Stonewall Riots. In Bilodeau’s article discussing the Stonewall Riots he recalls the police raid on the Stonewall Inn that happened in the early morning of June 28, 1969 and how it has affected the LGBT community ever since. This routine raid ended up not being so routine when the patrons of the bar decided not to cooperate with police and refused to verify their identities. When the police tried to arrest the patrons a crowd of bystanders had gathered and shouts of “gay power” and renditions of “we shall overcome” filled the air. A scuffle broke out and the resulting riots lasted a full five days (Bilodeau, B. & Renn, K., 2005). More than just a riot however, the incident at the Stonewall Inn lead to the organization of activists groups and, eventually, gay rights organizations. As a result of the riots, there were some changes to how society defined homosexuality. Starting in 1973, the American Psychiatric Association, or APA, changed the diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders (DSM) so that it no longer included homosexuality as a psychological disorder. This not only changed the way homosexuality was viewed in the psychiatric world but also changed social norms and the standing gays held in the political arena. 1974 there were some definite criticisms of the decision to remove homosexuality from the DSM and so ego-dystonic homosexuality was added in it’s place. Ego-dystonic homosexuality was an obvious extension of the prejudice towards gays and made the LGBT community complete a test to determined whether they were “actually gay” or not. This diagnosis was quickly voted out of the DSM because the decision to include it in the first place was made as a political compromise and not on any actual psychological reasoning (Bilodeau, B. & Renn, K., 2005). After homosexuality was completely removed from the DSM, gays fought for the rights to work without discrimination, to live together, and to purchase a house together. Having won those rights the struggles the LGBT community is facing now are the right to marry, to adopt a child, and to have more equal rights in the work place, especially in the area of healthcare benefits. These rights are extended to heterosexual couples but not to homosexuals and so they must fight for them in a struggle which mirrors women’s suffrage, and the African American Civil Rights movement. Along with these basic rights, the LGBT community has also had to fight against social prejudices and hatred, especially within the religious community. Throughout the world same-sex marriage is considered to be a political, religious, social, moral, and civil rights issue. There is debate over whether homosexual couples should be allowed to marry, if they should be required...