The view on LGBT rights has been a important issue in our society for many years. In the past couple of years, huge achievements have been made for the gay community. For example, In the year 2015 gay marriage had been made legal in the United States. However, the battle for full LGBT rights is still occuring in the world today. Many people in the LGBT community are still being discriminated against just because of their sexuality. Today, there are many people that live in fear of showing their true identity to the world because they fear that society won’t accept them for having a different sexual orientation. Yoshino himself writes, “Covering is a hidden assault on our civil rights…So long as covering demands persist, American civil rights will not have completed its work.” The author of “The New Civil Rights” Kenji Yoshino struggles with LGBT rights; throughout the book he opens up about his own experience being both a scholar and gay asian American.
Legalizing same-sex marriage all over the United States was a huge victory for people in the LGBT community. Usually, most couples who end up married, tend to start families. Moreover, homosexual people are unable to start a family due to the inability to reproduce. The only solution to this problem is by letting homosexual couples adopt children. There are several children around the world, but not enough adults to adopt them. Sadly, there still are laws in some states that do not allow LGBT people to adopt children because of religion or even just discrimination against them. The homosexual people are not different from other people, they just identify with a different sexuality; they just want to love and support children who do not have homes/families. According to The New York Times, “Adoption laws, for example, can be extremely contradictory (Harris, 2017). In some states, like Maryland and Massachusetts, adoption agencies are expressly prohibited from discriminating based on sexual orientation (Harris, 2017). At the same time, other states, like South Dakota, have laws that create religious exemptions for adoption providers, allowing agencies to refuse to place children in circumstances that violate the groups’ religious beliefs” (Harris, 2017). This is not fair to the homosexual people who reside in these states where adoption is illegal for them; anyone who can provide and care for children should be allowed to adopt. Children would be extremely happy to belong with a family. The New York Times shared a story of how a homosexual couple found a baby abandoned in the subway. To take a case in point here is an excerpt from the New York Times article: “We weren’t supposed to be there, two men, with a son we had never dreamed of by our side, getting married by a woman who changed and enriched our lives more than she would ever know. But there we were, thanks to a fateful discovery and a judicious hunch” (Mercurio, 2013). In addition, some people argue that children growing up with homosexual parents might develop psychological, or social problems (such as growing mental health issues or bullying in schools). However, studies have shown that adopted children in homosexual homes actually prosper. ‘Research shows that children raised by gay or lesbian parents do as well as other children in terms of well-being, adjustment, functioning and peer relationships, and researchers have found no differences in terms of depression, anxiety and self-esteem,’ said Caitlin Ryan, director of the Family Acceptance Project at the César E. Chávez Institute at San Francisco State University (Borreli, 2013).
Discrimination or harassment in the workplace is still a huge continuous issue for people in the LGBT community. Mutual respect should be maintained in the workplace; it shouldn’t matter what sexual orientation you are because we all are human beings. While hiring people for jobs, one should look for someone based on work ethic and how they connect to the workplace; not by physical features, race, or even one’s sexuality. Sometimes people are easily discriminated against in the workplace and people wouldn’t even notice it. Some examples of how discrimination and harassment can occur in the workplace include: stereotyping, work termination, or even sexual assault. “Workplace discrimination is especially prevalent for transgender employees. Nearly every transgender person surveyed as part of a 2009 report from the National Center for Transgender Equality and the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force said they experienced discrimination at work, including everything from being denied access to the appropriate rest room to being barred from working with clients” (Paul, 2017). Countless amounts of people are rejected from employment opportunities because they are in the LGBT community.
Furthermore, across the United States many people of the LGBT community run into obstacles that prevent them from retrieving quality health care. For instance, imagine having to see your primary care doctor for a regular check-up and being denied service based on your sexuality; this is a reality for populations in the LGBT community. The ACA (affordable care act) was created to make many LGBT individuals receive a fair healthcare service and coverage; however healthcare providers still till this day deny healthcare to lesbians, gay, Bisexual, and transgenders (LGBT). In a nationally representative survey conducted by the Center for American Progress in 2017, 8 percent of lesbian, gay, and bisexual respondents and 29 percent of transgender respondents reported that a healthcare provider had refused to see them because of their sexual orientation or gender identity in the past year (Human Rights Watch, 2018). In Michigan, Jami and Krista Contreas’s baby girl was refused access to a proper health care just because her parents were gay; the baby has no sexual orientation and was discriminated against just because her parents were gay. Healthcare access should be accessed to all humans
Writing in the book “The New Civil Rights”, Yoshino states that “The true self is our most authentic and creative selves, in contrast the false self is fake and it hides who we truly are. He connects this concept of true and false with his own coming-out experience. He hid his authentic gay self behind a fake false self”. Like Yoshino, many lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) individuals do this to hide themselves from discrimination and harassment. Yoshino’s point is that to change civil rights, the changes must not come from laws and legislations but through having conversations and speaking up for ourselves. If someone spots a problem in our civil rights, we should just simply speak up instead of waiting for someone else too. If prioritizing this civil right issue happens, then we can be one step closer in making discrimination disappear anywhere. Having conversations from many views in regards to this issue, will help give americans in the U.S. a chance to understand what is happening in the LGBT community, and we could be closer to finding a solution to this issue.