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Matter of Choice Introduction In todays progressive society we can talk about who we are, what we like and dislike. But when it comes to our sexual orientation especially if we are not heterosexual, we may find it difficult to talk about it freely, despite the fact that today there is a large number of gay communities, where you can meet people who have a lot in common with you and who might help you in your difficulties. For gay people, there have always been issues of social acceptability, especially within conservative communities. Those who are homophobic will not accept known gay people into their social circle. There are those who believe that gay people are committing a sin against God and thus, represent evil. In modern society, gay people have been isolated, attacked physically and verbally, and have been thrown out of their churches and told that they are doomed to Hell.
Churches have a significant influence over their parishioners, and although the church has no legal standing in terms of sanctioning marriage, it does dictate to some what is or is not morally acceptable. This paper argues that homosexuality is neither a sin nor an abnormality it is something that many people are born with, and the society has to accept them the way they are. Definition of Homosexuality Wikipedia states that: Homosexuality refers to sexual and romantic attraction between individuals of the same sex. The first recorded use of the word was in 1869 by Karl-Maria Kertbeny, but the prevalence of the concept owes much to the work of the German psychiatrist Richard Freiherr von Krafft-Ending and his 1886 work Psychopathic Sexual.
Homosexuality in America As homosexual rights activist Dick Michaels said near the beginning of the homosexual movement: Homosexuals could be a very potent economic and political force if united. The time has come for new leadership to rise from the wreckage of the past. By the beginning of the eighties a new type of homosexual man had become visible in most large American cities and could also be found, to a somewhat lesser extent, in most other Western urban centers. No longer characterized by an effeminate style, the new homosexual displayed his sexuality by a theatrically masculine appearance: denim, leather, and the ubiquitous key rings dangling from the belt. The long-haired androgynous look of the early seventies was now found among straights, and the super-macho image of the Village People disco group seemed to typify the new style perfectly, even if the group strenuously denied this identification and later abandoned the style to make it in Las Vegas. For homosexual women the changes were more complex.
As with homosexual men, there was a considerable shift in self-image, even if this was less reflected in external appearances. For gay women, however, this shift was closely bound up with very major changes in self-perception brought about by the feminist movement, which itself had allowed large numbers of women to discover a capacity for sexual and emotional involvement with other women. In a quite new way one's sense of gender identity was important for homosexuals, both women and men, who no longer felt it necessary to adopt the characteristics of the opposite sex as a sort of apology for failing to act out conventional sexual norms. If some women now adopted a butch style, or men wore earrings, it was no longer due to a sense of inadequacy in meeting conventional expectations. Thirty years ago being gay or lesbian, was much harder than it is today. You could not see a homosexual person on the street, your friends even if they were gay would never tell you that, and all you might find about the homosexual movement were the articles in the newspapers written about the gay pickets, which were the most popular sexual minority rights tactic of that time.
They knew each other and the whole movement looked rather like a small gay club. The number of people, who revealed their sexual identity, was small, but still they were fighting for their rights in order to bring society's attention and understanding. These people have endured a lot in order to become socially accepted. First, they had to be brave enough to reveal their sexual orientation.
With the flow of time, the attitude towards gay and lesbian has changed, but even today, it is difficult for a homosexual person to come out. Why are People Homosexual? The origins of human sexuality in particular have been a question that philosophers, theologians, and regular people were trying to find an answer on for thousands of years. The attraction to the same sex in most cultures has been treated as abnormal type of behavior or even a crime. According to our social norm, males are attracted to females and vise versa. However, there is a minority, who attracts to their own sex.
It is about five percent of all the population in the world. For these five percent it is a natural biological drive. Psychology books suggest that it all depends in which environment a person has been raised. Personally, I think that it is not limited to the environment; there should be some transaction in the humans brain, which makes the person to have a sexual attraction to the person of the same sex. There are scientific evidences that prove being gay is not a choice. For example, Dr.
Is, the chairman of the American Psychiatric Association's committee on Gay, Lesbian, and Bisexual Issues, argues that homosexuality "is constitutional [that is, biological in origin]. " To support his position, he cited as proof two 1991 studies - the "gay brains" research of Simon Le Vay and the "gay twins" study of Bailey & Pillard. Michael Bailey and Richard Pillard who focused on identical twins, non-identical twins, non-adopted siblings and adopted siblings. n their sample, they had 56 sets of identical twins and 54 sets of non-identical twins. They found a 52 % concordance rate for the identical twins which means that for every homosexual twin, the chances were about 50 % that his twin would also be homosexual. For non-identical twins, the rate was about 22 %, showing that about 1 in 5 twins who were homosexual had a homosexual brother also.
For non-twin brothers, the concordance rate was 9. 2 %. Interesting enough, Bailey and Pillard found that the concordance rate in adopted brothers was 11. 2 %. What is to be gay or lesbian? For heterosexual it may seem as just being of another sexual orientation. In order to be accurate in the judgment of how is it to be of another sexual orientation the best way would be eventually to become a homosexual, but it is not possible. Still, it is not easy just to imagine that I am lesbian when I actually am not.
If I were one, the attitude of people towards me would be different. How my parents would react if one day they discover that their single daughter, their hope, will not marry a handsome man, that they would not become grandparents? Definitely, it would be shocking news for my family. Would not I be afraid to reveal the truth?
How would I accept that some people would not speak to me, because I am lesbian? I might be scared of being myself, and I will not find it comfortable living in such an atmosphere of social disapproval and isolation. All this will greatly influence my perception of the environment. One of many emotions a homosexual may feel, the most persistent is fear.
The fear of being found out is strong enough, but the history does not end there. The young homosexual is afraid of being teased, called different names and even being assaulted. Lesbian or gay face many problems as they realize that they are not of the same sexual orientation as the majority. For them with lack of life experience it may result into being short of self-confidence. Often, they do not even know another person with homosexual orientation and feel very lonely and misunderstood.
They have to hide their secret and they cannot share their pain even with family. Just imagine if you are truly loving someone else and you have to keep it totally as a secret, because if you do not you can be punished, shed out of your home by your family, left by your friends. This is what young lesbian and gay have to deal with every day. The feelings that young homosexuals face lead to the continuous depression. Many become suicidal and may develop a felling of helplessness. They cannot speak up for themselves and nobody will speak up for them.
The cases of suicide attempts among the homosexual are frequent, since earlier homosexual teens are up to six times more likely to commit suicide than heterosexual ones. Gay-Bashing is another serious problem in todays society. Parents, that are not aware of their childrens sexual orientation, often make remarks about homosexual television characters or at sexual orientation in general, leaving their kids without any chance to talk about this issue. Homosexual teenagers cannot reveal the truth to their parents, friends, or even the church.
When a homosexual enters college and begins to explore the world, it is possible to find the support group that were so lacking in school. In general, Christian churches criticize homosexuality and their beliefs are backed up with the Bible. There is actually no religion in the world that would support homosexual relationships. The basic reason for not approving such a kind of affiliation by any religion is for the means of reproduction. Homosexual intercourse will not result in a creation of new life (birth of a child). In Bible, it is written that God have punished people that lived in towns of Sodom and Gomorra for their homosexual relationships.
Nevertheless, in many cases lesbian or gay have to go to the church with their family and the only thing that they will hear is the disapproval. Each youth sits there listening to parents, friends, while priests tear apart their feelings of love. They really need to have role model in order to have some support and not to feel lonely. The other type of discrimination that gay people are suffering from is homophobia. It is the fear of gay people and fear of being gay.
Everyone would agree that the idea of imprisonment of homosexuals sounds absurd from social or ethical point of view. However, even at the beginning of the 21 st century, we have to admit that the problem of fearing those people how are different in any respect still exists. Conclusion: Human sexual orientation is not an ordinary topic or study. It is at the center of a fierce debate involving politics, the law, religion, ethics and the origins and meaning of human behavior. Many legal experts felt the evidence for a genetic link to homosexuality would strengthens the evidence for immutability and therefore cause stricter inspection of laws that permitted discrimination against gays and lesbians in housing, employment, or participation in the political process.
In was not the immutability to be of a primary importance, but the protection of equal rights, which involved ethical, medical, and economic issues. Homosexuals are normal people just like the heterosexuals. They have feelings and their sexual orientation of attracting the same sex is inborn. They have no control over this destiny. Counseling, therapy or the environment would not change this, since we cannot convert them into heterosexuals. Then why do not we accept this and give homosexuals all the respects and rights they undoubtedly deserve for the simple reason of being human beings.
The paper above argued that homosexuality is biological, that people are born with it. Some scientific studies have been mentioned, as well other arguments were given. Problem of homosexuality is very important because even though gays are a worlds minority (only 5 % of population), they are human beings and are as important to the societies as their other members. Even people who oppose homosexual movements need to realize that it is impossible to stop them people will not hide who they are, they will not pretend they are heterosexual if they are not. Bibliography: Dean Byrd, Ph. D. , MBA, MPH: Born That Way?
Facts and Fiction about Homosexuality, web Anastasia Toufexis, "New evidence of a gay gene, " Time 146 (November 13, 1995), 43 Bailey JM & Pillard RCA genetic study of mate sexual orientation. Arch Gen Psychiatry 1991; 48: 1089 - 1996 Carol T. Tully: Lesbians, Gays, & the Empowerment Perspective; Columbia University Press, 2000 Homosexuality in America: Exposing the Myths By Richard G. Howe, American Family Association Journal, 2004 Le Vay S A difference in hypothalamic structure between heterosexual and homosexual men.
Science 1991; 253: 1034 - 1037 Martin Kantor: Homophobia: Description, Development, and Dynamics of Gay Bashing; Praeger, 1998 web web
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