So after much thought I have decided to ramble on about the struggles of Equality. My main focus in particular is that of LGBT+ equality.
For many years we have fought for equal rights and one by one rights have been given for the LGBT community. One thing I have always found myself pondering is why do we in modern society have to ‘fight for our rights’. Now there are many reasons to this and one is through pure ignorance of education.
Being a gay man myself I almost find it amusing when someone makes that ‘homophobic’ remark. But when you actually speak to the person it becomes ever clearer it is more out of ignorance. We can pass law after law giving equal rights but unfortunately this will never solve the ignorance of the minority in society. Where we begin is from the bottom, we start with the education of the youth. Now i’m not saying we will solve homophobia in a week by educating. In fact it probably wouldn’t solve it for another 30-40 years if not more. After all education gets passed from generation to generation and by educating now we can begin to work on on securing that equal society in the future. We can pass all the laws in the world but we cannot force someone to accept.
We have of course come a very long way over the past 30-40 years as it is. We have become more accepting as a society and have seen the rights for a same sex couple expand from the right to adopt to the recent right of same sex marriage. The biggest statement of a more accepting society is the ever growing Pride festivals that happen across the UK every year. They show such diversity that 30 years ago people could only ever dream off. I have now attended Brighton pride for the past 2 years, this year I actually took part in the parade alongside other Liberal Democrats. It is an amazing feeling to take part in such an event and especially one that is of personal relevance and close to heart. Pride is after all to show people we should all be Proud of who we are regardless of your sexual preference.
My most biggest annoyance is the stigma of religion (particularly Christians) against the LGBT community. In fact more Christians now support the LGBT community than ever before. The biggest thing that stood out to me recently was the misrepresentation of some media that because Tim Farron (LibDem leader) was Christian he must be homophobic as he avoided the question. If anyone knew of Tim Farron’s work they would know he actually stands up for LGBT rights and even drafted a bill on PSHE of the inclusion into our education system. Last time I checked this isn’t the work of someone who is homophobic. However, what I do believe is that if a person of Christianity does believe being LGBT is not right in the eyes of god we should not persecute this belief. This is their faith and have every right to believe that (it is a human right after all). If we persecute a belief then we only create the same stigma and lack of equality the LGBT community once had. The purpose of Equality is so that we are all equal in rights after all.
Now true equality isn’t going to happen over night. We can keep passing laws but what we really need to start doing is educating and from there build the ground works for a better future, which can actually apply to equality of all minority groups.
What we need to do is start educating people it is actually alright to just show PRIDE in who you are no matter who you are!! And maybe just maybe we can begin the future with True Equality