April 27th 2013
Marriage Equality and Gender Equality
In the history of The United States of America, It has not been uncommon for certain groups to attain more rights then other groups. Whether It has been Irish Immigrants in the north, to black slaves in the south discrimination has always been apart of our history. While history has saved many from discrimination, there are still two groups that face it, even today. Women; and Gay couples. There are many links between these two groups, especially women that are in lesbian relationships. Where does the road to true equality begin?
From the beginning of the United States, women did not have as many rights as men. They could not vote, own property, or start a business. Contrary to popular belief, many of the rights fought for in the american revolution were for the rights Adult white males. Women did not even earn the right to vote until the 1900's in the women's suffrage movement. They earned the right to finally serve in the armed forces in the 1980's, but are still struggling to earn placement in combat arms military occupational specialties.
Gay people are one of the most discriminated groups of people in the history of the United States. They have faced persecution and people have judged them as second class citizens. Threatened with death in early history, to just being denied the right to be recognized as a married couple today. In a article by Suzzane B. Goldberg titled "Give Me Liberty or Give Me Death: Politcal Asylum and the Global Persecution of Lesbians and Gay Men, a Lesbian applicant for Aslyum in a phystriactic hospital is quoted as saying "Nobody would help us, our society hated Lesbians. Twice when Investigated by the police, I had to Lie and say I am not a lesbian. The police saw us deserving of punishment and then hospital staff would use electro shock therapy on us!" Innocent people, who happened to be lesbian, something that should not matter, in the eyes of justice; were being punished very severely for there sexual orientation. Even though they had done nothing wrong except for be in the wrong place at the wrong time
A major victory for Gay rights was the repeal of Don't Ask Don't Tell. Before, you could not serve openly gay in the Armed Forces of the United States. To Identify yourself as a gay person was to risk being chaptered out of the military. with the repeal of that law however, your sexual orientation could be known to anyone and it was your right to love who you wanted. It was no longer any of the military's business. In "Compelled Affirmations, Free Speech, And The U.S. Military's Don't Ask, Don't Tell Policy" an article by Tobias Barrington Wolff, he paints a picture of two Air force Officers how have gotten together after to have some coffee and relax. One of the Two Officers, is a lesbian, and since the time she had entered service no one knew, as the Don't Ask Don't Tell policy required.
A big step for women has been the debate over their role in the infantry. Although women were allowed to join the armed forces starting in the 1980's, they were kept segregated from combat arms forces. Many just felt that women would not not be able to bear the burden of combat (then again, is anyone really prepared to go through such a thing). It was more a decision in the eyes of logic and not discrimination to some. Although today women are being allowed to volunteer to go through combat arms training, and several have tried and failed. There is a big difference between women who actually want to go through the training, and women's rights activists who are just lobbying for it just because men set the standard for it. "Many Army women are puzzled when they see feminists in the media pushing to open up combat roles to women". (Miller pg.2) Allowing women to volunteer for it is one thing, but forcing them to be apart of the draft, and be directly assigned to combat arms without a choice is...
Cited: Goldberg B. Suzanne, "Give Me Liberty Or Give Me Death: Political Asylum and the Global Persecution of Lesbians and Gay Men. Hein Online. 1993. 27, April 2013. Online Jorunal
Wolff B. Tobias. Compelled Affirmations: Free Speech and the U.S. Military 's Don 't Ask, Don 't Tell Policy. HeinOnline. 1997. 27, April 2013. Online Journal.
Cain A. Patricia. Litigating for Lesbian and Gay Rights: A Legal History. Virginia Law Review, Vol. 79, No.7. 1993. 27 April, 2013. Online Journal.
Wolff B. Tobias. Political Representation and Accountablitiy Under Don 't Ask, Don 't Tell. Hein Online. 2003. April 26, 2013. Online Journal.
Taylor, Jared. Women In Combat: Another Nail in the Coffin. Taki 's Magazine. 2013. April 25, 2013. Online Journal.
Homokay, Julianna. “The Wedding Story.” Literature: Craft & Voice. Ed. Nicholas Delbanco and Alan Cheuse. New York: McGraw-Hill, 2009. Print.
Glaspell, Susan. “Trifles.” Literature: Craft & Voice. Ed. Nicholas Delbanco and Alan Cheuse. New York: McGraw-Hill, 2009. Print.
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