In 2008, 190 homosexuals were killed in Brazil, one every two days, known as a 55 percent increase on the previous year. The annual report on murders of homosexuals, according to the Grupo Gay da Bahia from Brazil, says that 64 percent of the victims were gay men, 32 percent were transvestites, and four percent were lesbians. This is absolutely astonishing.
Even though homosexuals have chosen an alternative lifestyle, they still deserve to live a normal life without being victimized of physical harm for their choices.
Homosexuality is not “normal” in biological terms. If it were normal, then everybody would be homosexual and that is self-evident. Homosexuals are actively striving to convince us that homosexuality is “normal,” but they confuse frequency and familiarity with normality. Today’s world is more familiar with homosexuals, their reputation, their struggles, their status in the population, but that doesn’t change the underlying biology: homosexuality is not “normal. We are all people. People who love, cry, eat and breathe just like everybody else does. If homosexuality is not “normal,” then what is it? Homosexuals, and heterosexual as well, argue that it is not a choice, but inherent to who they are. With certain qualifications for people of confused identify, it is acceptable to believe that homosexuality is rooted in biology, and that the individual doesn’t choose it. The American researcher Dean Hamer published research that seemed to prove that homosexual orientation could be genetically transmitted to men on the x chromosome, which they get from their mothers” (Am I Gay? ). If it is rooted in biology, and is not normal, then therefore, homosexuality must be a genetic quirk, a genetic mutation that causes a person to have a sexual identity that is innately in contradiction with that person’s physical self and with the natural instinct to pass one’s genes to the next generation through procreation with a person of the opposite sex.
If science proves homosexuality is innate, is there any basis to deny gays equal treatment — including the right to marry? But if scientists unravel the roots of sexual orientation, will it some day be possible to “fix” people who don’t fit the norms or abort fetuses likely to be born gay? ” (Doughton). In our culture, the victim of gay bashing is considered the sinner. That’s why so often the crimes against homosexuals go unpunished until someone is found beaten, burned and tied to a fence post. There is a pat psychological answer–gays are threatening to us because of homosexual tendencies built into the human psyche, which frighten us and which we must put away from us…at any time, in any culture it seems to be convenient to have a group of people who can be demonized and excluded…” (Stop Bashing Gay People). The verbal taunts and persecution of people because of their sexual orientation are so commonplace they set the stage for murderers who think it’s no crime to hate gays and to act on that hate. “It is that instinctual fear of rape that drives much of homophobia.
Straight men often instinctually see gay men as a threat, and they instictively fear that threat. It’s a fear of a loss of control, of dominance, of status” (Bidstrup). As anybody can tell, the opportunity to be threatened, humiliated and to live in fear of being beaten to death is the only “right” our culture grants on homosexuals. If you listened to the opponents of laws designating gay bashing as a hate crime, you’d think there really was some fundamental difference between being a black man, who is beaten and dragged behind a truck, and being a gay man, who is beaten, his skull crushed, and left tied to a fence to die. Gay bashing also sends the message that whether a person is actually lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgendered, or queer, if they are perceived by others as being so, a negative (and potentially violent) reaction may occur” (Matzner). The only real difference is the nickname the killers use to describe the victim. The one used for the black man is considered an obscenity so appallingly offensive, it can’t be written, printed, or projected verbally. The one used for the gay man is a common expression. It’s familiar in schools, comedy routines, the media, and on street corners all across America.
There is the perception that homosexuals are a socially acceptable target. Therefore, when young people are asked, they will justify and defend targeting gay people as inferior. “Gaybashing is the most socially acceptable, and probably the most common, type of hate crime, especially among male teenagers and young adults” (Matzner). There’s a belief nowadays that it’s not so cool to assault racial minorities. It’s not so cool to assault women, Blacks or Jews. But assaulting gays is actually something humorous to a lot of young people. It’s probably the last socially acceptable group to assault.
Part of it is related to the fact that discrimination against gays is still legalized and encoded. That sends a message to young people that, if gays don’t have equal rights in employment, housing, child custody, the military, or marriage, then there’s something wrong with them, and nobody’s going to mind if we have some fun at their expense. According to statistics released by the FBI, hate crimes that are specifically committed in relation to the victims sexual orientation have risen over the past three years. There were 1,017 reported in 2005, 1,195 in 2006 and 1,265 in 2007.
The FBI reported a 6 % increase in hate crimes against gay, lesbian and transgender people in 2008. A gay-bashing incident took place in Vancouver in March of this year. “He’s a faggot. He deserved it. I’m not a fag. The faggot touched me. He deserved it,” the accused said to a witness. Richard Dowrey, a 62-year old man was punched in the face at a pub and has left him clinging to life in the intensive care unit at a local hospital. The force of the punch threw him backgrounds, falling to the ground and hitting the back of his head. “Most commonly, respondents said that they were defending themselves against sexual predation” (Franklin).
The man will live with permanent brain damage for the rest of his life. Unfortunately, this incident was humorous to someone. What if you were the man who had to live as a vegetable for the rest of your life? Nobody should think that there is not a possibility of this happening the other way around. It may not be as likely, but there is always that possibility of a homosexual physically harming a heterosexual just for being heterosexual. Gay bashing occurs even among children of very young ages, and in this instance, it was too late. 11 year-old Carl Joseph Walker-Hoover was found dead after he hanged himself earlier this week by tying an electrical cord around his neck that was fastened to a support beam in his home. The child had enduring day after day of taunting with anti-gay slurs at the school he attended” (Hipps). People don’t realize that they go too far with the unbearable taunting. Not only may it lead to physical harm, but it really affects people emotionally and to the point that they may inflict harm upon themselves because they have lost their self-esteem. Being homosexual may not be the norm, but they are human beings just like the rest of the world.
They have feelings as well. Another example of a gay bashing tragedy: the heart-wrenching story of Brandon Teena, a young transsexual murdered in a hate crime, which took place in the 90’s. Brandon was born biologically a female, but lived as a male. Because of this, he was subsequently brutally beaten, raped and murdered. His life story and death was later portrayed in the Academy Award winning film, “Boys Don’t Cry. ” This story was brought to life again for people to manifest the horrific actions that did and still do take place in our prejudice society.
It is needed to have these stories known and fleshed out. It is unfortunate that our society lives in a country where hate crime legislation is not necessary, but it is. If a crime is committed because of a prevailing prejudice, that prejudice will only subside when we as a society are having an active conversation to bring the issues out into the open. The more they get shoved into the dark, the darker and more horrible they become. Acts and laws need to be passed in order to bring these issues to light in a way that the media cannot ignore.
It would be the best way to both bring these crimes to justice and bring about cultural change in our society about a minority group. “The cost to society is enormous, not just to the gay person, but to his family, his acquaintances, his employers, and to society as a whole” (Bidstrup).
Works Cited “Am I gay? Are you born gay? Can you stop being gay? ” Bidstrup, Scott. “Homophobia: The Fear Behind The Hatred. ”The Nature of Homophobia. 3 September 2000. Doughton, Sandi. “Born gay? How biology may driveorientation. ” Seattle Times. 19 June 2005. Franklin, Karen. Why Do People Say Gay bash? ” Assault onGay America. 1995-2008. Frayssinet, Fabiana. “RIGHTS-BRAZIL: Gay-Bashing Murders Up55 Percent. ” IPS News on the Web. 22 April 2008. Hainsworth, Jeremy. “Community demands court treatgaybashing as a hate crime. ” Where Queers Conspire. 26March 2009. Hipps, James. “11 Year Old Hangs Himself Over Gay Slurs. ”Gay Agenda. 2008. 11 April 2009. Matzner, Andrew. “Gaybashing. ” Social Sciences. 2004. 19August 2005. Schneider, Walter H. “Gay Violence Statistics. ” Fathers ForLife. 1998-2008. 1 April 1998. “Stop Bashing Gay People. ”