The at risk group I have chosen is the Lesbian/ Gay/ Bisexual/ Transgender (LGBT) Teens. During my brief yet intense research online, I have developed numerous statistics, data, and interviews about how the Lesbian/ Gay/ Bisexual/ Transgender (LGBT) Teens have been declared an at risk group for discrimination, hatred, and oppression. With that said, according to Mental Health America, “While trying to deal with all the challenges of being a teenager, gay/lesbian/ bisexual/ transgender (LGBT) teens additionally have to deal with harassment, threats, and violence directed at them on a daily basis. They hear anti-gay slurs such as ‘homo’, ‘faggot’, and ‘sissy’ about 26 times a day or once every 14 minutes. [sic]” And why must we make them an at risk group? Throughout society LGBT Teens have lived in fear of being harassed, beaten, or even killed because of their sexuality, which are products of: Societal Institutions, the New Puritanism, Heterosexism, and human morality which has predominately assumed dominance within our day-to-day lives. Description
As explained in the Introduction, the at risk group I choose for class was the Lesbian/ Gay/ Bi/ Transgender (LGBT) Teen, for the rest of this assignment we are going to call them LGBT Teens. To start off this paper we are going to break down and explain who and what LGBT stands for. According to Sue & Sue, Lesbian is the term that is given to a female who is attracted to females, Gay is the term given to a male who is attracted to males, Bi is the term given to either a male or female that are attracted to both sexes, and Transgender is a term that is given to either a male or female that personally cannot associate with their assigned gender so on the inside they feel like the opposite sex and sometimes dress that way and can even have surgery to change their gender. LGBT Teens are noted as experiencing higher rates of substance abuse, suicidal thoughts/attempts, and etcetera than heterosexual’s teens. According to GLSEN, “ 83% Lesbians and 685 of adolescents use alcohol and 56% of lesbians and 44% of gay males use other drugs. There are other associated terms for the LGBT Teens not all being of positive vibe which includes: homosexual, queer, dike, tranny, and sissy, just to name a few. Discrimination
Discrimination has been defined as the treatment taken toward or against a person of a certain group in consideration based solely on class or category. According to Sue & Sue, “Today the LGBT Community are among the most hated minority groups within the United States, and falling victim to many hate crimes and unfair legislative rulings. There is many ways the LGBT Teen is discriminated against on a daily basis, which includes: name calling, bulling, poor treatment, and religious persecution. To start off let’s talk about school bulling, according to Mental Health America, a gay person is generally called names 26 times in a normal school day. Then there are also the issues of kids being bullied at school by physical aggression, and sometimes even vandalism to their property. Another way the LGBT Teens experience discrimination is from where most people would not personally think without personally seeing it; this is discrimination from your own family. In the normal American family home, we grow up from babe with a guardian that feeds us, puts a shelter over our head, and even is supposed to love their kids no matter what. After growing up with a happy family, some LGBT Teens decide to come out and depending on the family sometimes the fact of them coming out cause’s major issues as noted by Adolescent Homosexuality, 42% of the LGBT Teens that come-out become a homeless youth and/or a throwaway youth. Other things that could happen when coming out to your guardian includes: forced to church to ask for forgiveness, getting the shit beat out of you, or the loss of family because they won’t accept you. Another type of discrimination comes from church. Not all religions look as gay people being an abomination, but a lot of churches in the south quote stuff out of the bible such as Lev. 20:13, "If there is a man who lies with a male as those who lie with a woman, both of them have committed a detestable act; they shall surely be put to death. Their blood guiltness is upon them" . From that a lot of Christians look at this being reasons for them to judge homosexuals and to tell them that they are going to hell. Personally discrimination against gay people causes issues such as Tyler clementi and how his roommate video recorded him and a friend having sex, and putting it online, from there Tyler wrote on his face book page and went throw with jumping off the George Washington Bridge. According to a study by GLSEN, GLBT Teens are 2 times more likely to commit suicide, and 33% of teen death is that of the GLBT community. Oppression
Oppression is best explained as is the exercise of authority or power in a burdensome, cruel, or unjust manner. The major issues of oppression is that, it personally sounds like a word to express the early 1900’s but it still goes on today. The 3 major oppression that I choose to write about is Defense Of Marriage Act (DOMA), Anti-Bulling Policy, and they Don’t ask Don’t tell. To start off let’s talk about the Defense of Marriage Act, which defines marriage as a legal union between one man and one woman for purposes of all federal laws, and provides that states need not recognize a marriage from another state if it is between persons of the same sex. The issue’s about DOMA was the issues about gay marriage, since this was past there is now 6 states that you can legally marry in, but the issues really isn’t marriage. For the states that don’t accept gay marriage is the issues of adoption, and the issues about how if your life partner was to be ill enough to hit up the hospital the other partner ethically without a marriage license cannot choice medical treatment or last minuet decisions. If same sex was legal it would also make it cheaper on insurance policies and taxes. Another way the LGBT Teens are oppressed is the military, Don’t ask Don’t tell has been noted as being a very liberal policy, but honestly if someone is open to serving for their community they shouldn’t have to hide the fact that maybe there gay or bi. Oppression is something that should be in the past, but as long as many lives we will unfortunately have oppression on this earth. But to express how history has change so far the LGBT Community our issues and treatment have somewhat improves. Through my research of Material Resources I personally was not able to pull out a good resource to go into detail about, so the resources that the GLBT Teen cannot obtain is good insurance plans with their partner, which according to Sue & Sue, because same sex marriage is illegal, GLBT Teens cannot put there partner on their insurance plans at their work. Societal Values, Beliefs, and Behaviors
Ok the prevailing Societal Values towards the LGBT Teens is conformity, entertainment, equal opportunity, family values, equality, and minority rights. Ok now let’s go into detail, conformity is an issue here because people of the LGBT aren’t conforming to the normal ideal of heterosexism, another issues is how entertainment (TV) and stuff like that personally characterize us as being crazy whores that are promiscuous, equal opportunity I am totally not sure how equal opportunity and equality and minority rights were on there but I see as if that’s not the societal values that is not prevailing because they are like hidden. Another problem that keeps the LGBT Teens down is beliefs, beliefs in God has some of the followers believing that homosexuality is a sin and not only a sin but a abomination. Another belief could also be the belief (stereotyping) of the GLBT where we are promiscuous and other negative things about us which also would relate to the behaviors of how some of the LGBT Teens act. History
Sense the 1900’s the issues about homosexuality has progressed be more acceptable to the community then it once was. This is best backed up by Gay History, in 1924 The Society for Human Rights became the country’s earliest known gay rights organization. The Stonewall was a gay bar in the Greenwich Village of New York, transformed the gay rights movement and got people to rallying for equality. This bar is well known for the Stonewall Riots were in 1969 police officers raided the bar on June 27th and the riots lasted 3 days. Don’t Ask Don’t Tell was passed in 1993 which had led to the discharge of thousands of men and women in their armed forces. But the best starting year was 2000, this year was the year that the GLBT community had a really big awesome start, that was because Vermont became the first state to legally recognize civil unions between gay or lesbian couples. The local policy we are going to explain is the East Tennessee State University’s policy on Sexual Orientation. This policy states that all people after treated equally in the University’s programs and activities, recruitment and admissions, and employment practices. So with that said, this policy has given many people opportunities, not only that being of education but also for its employees. This policy was approved in January of 2000, which was way before the LGBT issues started going wild. Barriers and Opportunity
In today’s society according to Sue and Sue, “some of the major issues that are holding back the ideal of LGBT Teens are number one how the Bible is the first reason the LGBT community is hated against people. Other barriers include how the Republican agenda is to keep DOMA and not have to change it. Other barriers that keep the LGBT Teens down are the societal values but mostly the social instructions. Policy
Personally the number one policy that is relevant to the LGBT Teens would be the Anti-Bulling Policy. This policy has been most recently come into questions about the ideal of how sexual orientation is not one of the anti-bulling issues. In the past few months that has been 6 students that have committed suicide because of how they were treated at school. Just to name a few Tyler Clementi, Seth Walsh, Justin Aaberg, Raymond Chase, Asher Brown and Billy Lucas, all have committed suicide because of how they were discrimated against. Each one having a different story one being the fact his roommate ousted him and put up a sex video of him and his partner and went and jumped off the George Washington Bridge, another one being kids calling him queer and fag got to him and he hung himself in his closet where his mom fount him. Personally there is numerous ways that this policy could fit better to protect those that have a different sexual orientation. According to Tolerance.org, “there is 5 ways to make schools safer for the LGBT Teens. Which include provide explicit support systems of the LGBTQ students, serve as allies and role models for the students, employ inclusive and respectful curricula, include anti-gay bullying in anti-harassment policies, and last advocate for statewide anti-discrimination laws. They stated that if all of the 5 steps were done school would be safer for the LGBT Teens, and there would be a better chance at lowering the suicide rate, and makes schools better.
Gay Lesbian and Straight Education Network. 2010.
Mental Health America. 2010.
Sue, D.W., & Sue, D. (2003). Counseling the culturally diverse: Theory and practice (4th ed.) New York: John Wiley and Sons, Inc.