LGBT Civil Rights Movement 2017 By Sadie Bard

Even back in the 1950’s, civil rights issues have always been a large issue. Still today there are people that are outed, people that are treated unequally, and people that are just plain disrespected. One thing these time periods have in common is simply that. Civil rights were an issue back then and still are today. Back in the 1950’s, the main issue was African Americans and how they were fitting into society. Today, the issue is the LGBT community and how they fit into society. Both of these Civil Rights issues are relating to discrimination, however they are both different on who they are discriminating against.

Both of these Civil Rights issues are similar due to the problem at hand, discrimination. One common form of retaliation against people who are different is violence. Both blacks in the 1950’s and LGBTQs in present daytime are threatened and put into danger often by others. For example, back in 1961 a group of African American protestors took buses and traveled to the heart of the south and gave speeches and conferences about how they wish to see the world. Unfortunately, when the first bus arrived in Alabama “an angry mob of about 200 white people surrounded the bus, causing the driver to continue past the bus station. The mob followed the bus in automobiles, and when the tires on the bus blew out, someone threw a bomb into the bus. The Freedom Riders escaped the bus as it burst into flames, only to be brutally beaten by members of the surrounding mob.” (History.com Staff) Clearly, African Americans were treated very poorly and were attacked violently by others. They were definitely robbed of their Civil Rights. Similarly, an “American-born man who’d pledged allegiance to ISIS recently bombed a gay nightclub in Orlando. [He] gunned down 49 people early Sunday… the deadliest mass shooting in the United States and the nation's worst terror attack since 9/11” (Ralph Ellis, Ashley Fantz, Faith Karimi and Eliott C. McLaughlin). Obviously, gays are also encountering violent actions forced upon them. Therefore, Civil Rights issues are still present in modern day society as much as they were in the 1950’s because of the violent attacks against these similar individuals.

However, although these two civil rights problems contain the same form of retaliation, the specific people being retaliated against were very different in specifics. Back in the 1950’s the group of citizens not being given their full amount of rights were African Americans, or to be even more generic, the citizens with dark skin. They were excluded from townie events, could not sit with the whites, and had to give up first class options to the whites. For example, in this picture photographed in a bathroom of a segregated town, two sinks, one labeled white and the other labeled color, are shown. The white sink is obviously nicer. It has an actual base and a faucet, while the colored sink is small, difficult to drink out of, with no base. Clearly, the citizens being discriminated against in this time period of Civil Rights issues are people with darker skin. However, in contrast, it is the LGBT community that is being discriminated against currently. Currently in the US Military forces, gays were told to be quiet and not speak of their personal lives. It was found to be inappropriate. If they did talk about it, they were told to leave, because “gay people were by law not allowed to become soldiers” (Associated Press). Obviously, this is unfair to the gay community. This is very different from the African American society. These are two different groups of people being discriminated upon. Therefore, this current civil rights issue of the LGBT community is somewhat different than the past issue of African American rights.

In conclusion, this issue of discrimination against LGBT citizens is very important. Many of these citizens are living everyday lives. They are just like everyone else. They live in normal houses, eat normal food, and many more. This is very unfair. One should be able to live their life and love whomever they feel they need to. These people are not threats to the environment. Unfortunately, they are punished for being them, and are hurt for loving others does the same sex and becoming that they feel they really are. Therefore, the LGBT community’s Civil Rights identifies with the 1950’s African American Civil Right’s movement, and should be treated and given the same respect.

Works Cited

Associated Press. "Transgender Children Are Now Welcome to Join the Boy Scouts." Newsela | Transgender Children Are Now Welcome to Join the Boy Scouts. N.p., n.d. Web. 23 Mar. 2017. <https://newsela.com/articles/boy-scouts-transgender/id/26373/>.

Ellis, Ralph, Ashely Fantz, Faith Karimi, and Elliot C. McLaughlin. "49 Killed in Florida Nightclub Terror Attack." CNN. Cable News Network, n.d. Web. 23 Mar. 2017. <http://www.cnn.com/2016/06/12/us/orlando-nightclub-shooting/>.

History.com Staff. "Freedom Rides." History.com. A&E Television Networks, 2010. Web. 23 Mar. 2017. <http://www.history.com/topics/black-history/freedom-rides>.

Segregated Sinks. 1957. Alabama.

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Created with images by krytofr - "IMG_7424" • WikiImages - "discrimination racism people of color" • Gene Hunt - "Rainbow flag"

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