LGBT Community: LGBT Rights that have to be Improved
Within the last few decades, the acceptance of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and trans relationships and marriages have gradually increased from atrocious levels in the 1970s to a complete majority today. A 1973 poll revealing 70% of the American public holding the opinion that gay relationships “are always wrong”. In the latest poll, 83% of respondents who identified as Democrats said they support legal recognition of same-sex marriage, while 44% of Republican respondents and 71% of independents expressed support. That is the complete opposite compared to the polls taken in 1973. Many people claim that LGBT rights have nearly the same equality as all individuals, but in reality, the LGBT rights still have a tremendous amount to improve on even though a lot has already evolved in marriage, adoption, and the military.
The LGBT community has so much more support in same-sex marriage in 2018/2019 than it had in the late 1900’s and early 2000’s. Same-sex marriage has become one of the most controversial social policy issues of our time. In The Path to Gay Rights, the author says, “As late as 1987, the General Social Survey (GSS) found that 78 percent of the American public thought that same-sex relations were ‘Always Wrong’” (Garretson 3). In other words that means that 22 percent of the American public thought same-sex relations were not wrong. As time evolved people also began to evolve. In an article it says, “In the United States, for example support for SSM has increased from 35 percent in 2001 to 62 percent in 2017” (Diez and Dion 466). Roughly 15 years between these three sets of data and the numbers have nearly doubled. Research on the social correlates of attitudes toward same-sex relationships consistently ?nds that people who are more opposed to such relationships tend to be older; male; politically conservative; southern; African American; more rural; less educated; less exposed to diversity; hold to the belief that homosexuality is a choice, not innate; gender traditionalists; and, most consistently, tend to be more religiously devout and/or conservative by a variety of measures.
The jurisprudential landscape for same-sex adoption is a patchwork of laws, policies, and practices across states. They dictate whether children without parents can be placed with gay and lesbian parents who pass every parental requirement, or whether they will be confined to foster homes or state institutions until they age out of the child welfare system, usually at the age of 18. While many state laws are mute as to the eligibility of gay and lesbian couples and individuals to adopt, many adoption agencies continue to single them out in the adoption process. In states where same-sex marriage is prohibited, eligibility to adopt is often limited to married couples, thereby excluding same-sex couples. Ironically, despite an increase in prohibiting placements with gay and lesbian adoptive parents, there has been a significant increase in adoptions by gay couples. The article says, “Importantly, recent national polls report increased support for same-sex adoption among the general population” (Washington 22). Since same-sex marriage did go a long way, it really did help out the same-sex adoption. Majority of the general population supports same-sex marriage, so it won’t be hard to sway them towards the pro-adoption way.
In recent years there have been notable shifts in public support for equal rights as well as military rights for lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) individuals. The 2010 repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell (DADT) is one example of how U.S. public policy has shifted toward greater inclusion of lesbian, gay, and bisexual (LGB) individuals. The repeal of DADT reversed the practice of discharging LGB service members on the basis of sexual identity. LGB service members may now serve their country without fear of direct repercussions stemming from sexual identity. Although the repeal of DADT was rightly celebrated as a significant achievement for the LGB community, it falls short of ensuring full equity and inclusion for many LGB—and especially transgender—service members. There remain several key barriers to LGBT service members’ full inclusion. These include continuing victimization and discrimination based on sexual minority status; the need for culturally competent services to address the mental health concerns of LGBT military service members
and policies and practices that, in some cases, may preclude military service by transgender people. Prior to DADT, homosexual orientation was a disqualifying trait for military service, and service members who were found to have engaged in homosexual acts potentially faced such penalties as court-martial and dishonorable discharge. In 1981, a U.S. Department of Defense (DOD) directive outlawed homosexual conduct or identity in any form. Such restrictions were influenced in part by the perspective that homosexual orientation, particularly the open identification of gay men, posed a threat to ideologies of masculinity within the U.S. Armed Forces. As noted previously, public opinion has, in recent decades, shifted toward equal rights for and full inclusion of the LGBT population in American society. Then, presidential candidate Bill Clinton promised to seek full repeal of the long-standing ban on LGB people serving in the military. The transgender population was largely excluded from these discussions. As Clinton pursued the lifting of such restrictions after his election, he encountered opposition on numerous fronts, including strong resistance from a military working group of generals and admirals and from some members of Congress, who opposed removing the ban on LGB service members.
In recent years there have been notable shifts in public support for equal rights, same-sex marriage equality, adoption, and other key social justice domains for LGBT individuals. The acceptance of gay and lesbian relationships is normal in the United States. There have been a lot of changes made to help out the LGBT community have equal rights, but with other peoples help they can still influence other individuals’ opinions. How would you feel if you couldn’t marry the love of your life because of same-sex laws, or adopting a child, or be discriminated in the military?”