One of my friends asked me to help him for a thesis project, so I decided to share his questions and my thoughts here. Do with them as you wish.
1. What is your personal attitude towards homosexuality? Do you feel as though because this lifestyle is your preference, there are negative connotations with it?
2. As a minority, do you feel underrepresented in your community?
3. With so many opposing stances on homosexuality, how do you view religion?
4. Do you feel as though gender has a role towards the treatment in those that partake in this lifestyle? Are there any differences between gays and lesbians?
5. How has being homosexual affected you in general? What is the positive and negative impacts homosexuality has had on your life?
6. What has influenced you to be who you are? Has a figurehead contributed to your perception or is it because you feel comfortable with who you already are?
1. I've always been open to homosexuality even when I considered myself to be straight. I believe there are positives and negatives with any choice one makes. However, homosexuality is looked down upon by a great majority of people. I feel there's nothing wrong with it personally, and not just because it's my preference.
2. Very much so, but I've met a lot of LGBT's in college. I feel that there's quite a bit of support, even though HU is a conservative university. It's hard to be represented when there aren't a lot of popular role models/celebs that everyone can look up to. The white community has Ellen Degeneres and Perez Hilton (I know there's more lol). It seems like all the black celebs are mostly assumed because none of them officially came out (Queen Latifah, MC Lyte, Missy Elliot, Tyler Perry). Wanda Sykes comes to mind, but she was pretty low-key in her announcement. Also, I've noticed that she doesn't really talk about it in her stand-up, as she knows the topic is looked down upon.
3. I still feel like gays can practice any religion they want, as I believe that God does not judge. Unfortunately, religion plays a dominant role in homophobia, especially in the black church community. I know some who are still Christians, and others who may be in between or may not believe in anything at all. As for me, as long as preachers don't bring up any homophobia at my church, then I'm good. There's a lot of hypocrisy, but there are those who go beyond it and find a true relationship with a higher power.
4. Definitely. There's a double standard when it comes gay/bi/transgendered men and lesbian/bi/transgendered women. We see guys getting off on girls kissing just for fun, while two males kissing is disgusting to most people. I feel that males have it worse, especially those who act feminine. Men are taught to be strong and to look a certain way. Lesbian relationships are sometimes looked at as not being that serious (the "falling in love with your best friend" syndrome, college experimentation phase, etc).
5. It's made me realize that there is more to life than the standard (marrying a nice man, having children, etc). It's not a choice. It's a matter of what makes you happy. The positive is that I have met so many amazing people who fall under the category. Another positive is that the majority of my straight friends accept me as I am. The negative part is that I'm somewhat closeted to my parents. In a sense, I feel like it is none of their business and they can't dictate that aspect of my life. Another negative is that it's disappointing that other people that I may come across may never accept it, but that comes with the lifestyle.
6. I've always been an advocate for self-love. I never hated myself for these attractions. It had always been inside of me, but acquiring a group of LGBT friends sort of gave me the push into the lifestyle. It felt odd at first, but I accepted it. Regardless, my sexuality doesn't completely define me. I'm African-American, a woman, a student, a daughter, etc.