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humanrights.docx

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Department
Social Science
Course
SOSC 1910
Professor
Kerry Taylor
Semester
Winter

Description
INTRODUCTION: One of the most vulnerable minority groups to be discriminated against is the LGBTQ community. This occurs when heterosexuals have homophobia and carries out acts about their negatives beliefs. Heterosexism(DEFINE). Homophobia is the irrational fear/hatred based on myths that are held about a group. Discrimination amongst the LGBTQ community can happen by through law, policy and practice, Furthermore, the social construction of invalidation myths held by the dominant group influences and contributes to the affect of LGBTQ self-identities. As a result, there are several political and legal strategies that have been adopted to address hetereosexism and homophobia and although they accomplished a lot, there are still continuing concerns. INVALIDATION MYTHS: The dominant view on sexual orientation holds heterosexuality as the only norm and something that is natural which as a result tends to 'other' gays, bisexuals, transgender..etc. This results in the dominant group to have ideas that single out people who don't conform to the 'norm'. These myths are called stigmatization which are invalid as there is no evidence supporting these negative attributed traits held against the LGBTQ community. As Kallen mentions in her article, the three most common myths about the LGBTQ are that gay/lesbians are obsessed with sex, they will recruit others and that they are child molesters. Other myths included that gay men are effeminate, lesbians are more masculine, homosexuality is unnatural and is a sickness, lesbians hate men and that gays/lesbians are dangerous because they threat our moral belief. Before the 1970s, homosexuality was on the list of disorders. This often meant that members of the LGBTQ were forced into treatment by their families because the myth was that homosexuality was a mental illness. A big invalidation myth about the LGBTQ community in the 1950s-70s was that they are a threat to national security. In the article by Kinsman, he states that this was due to the fact that people who engaged in same-gender sex were more easy to get black mailed because they had something to hide. As a result of this myth, the policing was intensified to a great deal. We see this in the film `Stand Together`, in which parks would be searched thoroughly, and queers were told that they were going to be charged if they didn`t name all their gay friends. Also if two men were kissing in public, police officers would arrest them and they would be charged with indecency and fined $50. AFFECTS OF SELF-IDENTITIES: Furthermore, the invalidation myths affects the self-identity of a LGBTQ member because the sexual identity has been socially stigmatized and dehumanized. Therefore, the discrimination imposed by the dominant group affects the self identity of a person in the LGBTQ community in several ways. It illustrates that a person from the LGBTQ community simply cannot be a healthy able-bodied person because being homosexual meant that you were 'abnormal or mentally sick' and also that they couldn't be a fit parent. In the 16th century, homosexuals were considered heretical (against God) and burned. During the NAZI period in the 20th century, homosexuals were sent to gas chambers and had to wear pink triangles for identification. Not only did discrimination occur through labelling, it also occurred through our laws, employment and education systems. Excluding homosexuals from the law contributed to their marginalization and invisibility. In the readings done by Martin, he states that laws were put in effects to prevent gays and lesbians from entering the United States. We see discrimination acts amongst the courts in the article Same Sex Partnership In Canada, is where it states the case of Mossop (1993). This case was the first big Charter case. It was about a gay man who requested a bereavement leave to attend his partners father's funeral and received a penalty based on family status. Another case was Egan (1995) in which a 20 yr old who was in a gay relationship applied for spousal benefit and pension plan but got denied. This was a violation of section 15. Employment systems usually have homophobic invalidation myths. If the employer held the three common myths that I mentioned earlier, it was really hard for members of the LGBTQ communities to maintain their job. Many employers used the basis of sexual orientation as a requirement to hire somebody. For example: the education system often refused to hire teachers whose orientation was suspected/known to be other than straight because they had the idea that `young` people would be `recruited`. This was used as an excuse to not hire somebody and also to fire somebody. The film `Stand Together` illustrates how members of the LBGTQ community have lost jobs directly in the military or demoted due to their sexual orientation. It shows how the RCMP established a security panel called `Fruit Machine` which was a series of tests and questions to determine sexuality. This act was also mentioned in Kinsman article and states that this was even funded by the Canadian government, but they said it was of scientific means of determining sexual orientation. For many LGBTQ youths, they are more vulnerable to get discriminated against in school. Students who were suspected to be gay or a lesbian often faced being ignored and bullied on school grounds. Many homosexuals often faced the notion of don't ask, don't tell scenarios and real absence of homophobia is often condoned. In the article by Didi, she makes the point that our education system finds it impossible to have queer sexuality as an alternative and how there is no hope for LGBTQ youth. They either come out and be hassled or stay in and look for communities outside of sc
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