History Of The LGBT Community

Submitted By badinga
Words: 2184
Pages: 9

I am a California resident. I was born in the African in the Democratic Republic of Congo. My experiences in my home country provides me insights on three very important categories in my life. I strongly feel that my time spent in London and Lebanon showed me some variations in how the respective countries differ as well in comparison when dealing with certain aspects of the three categories I view most influential in my life. Race, religion and sexual orientation form my top three categorical influences on my life. It is clear to me that they all have ties in terms of my experiences of them in the discussions and the examples given. Unfortunately in Africa, rights of the LGBT community are still a distant, sensitive even life threatening topic in many instances. Its funny how with all the information that is out there fact remains that even with the decent amount of rejection of unreasonable laws that apply to LGBT Africans by the African LGBT leadership themselves, its alliances throughout our greater African community, and of course the international community, close to zero has changed overall. Its seemingly impossible to not find the laws are becoming more oppressive, and the rhetoric African leaders dispel approaching new levels of vociferousness. For example a country like Uganda has seen a significant and worldwide headlining shift in the culture of the African community there becoming more overtly homophobic and even with the public debate not to mention the bevy of substance provided on this subject, people there are being shepherded into more ignorant views. South Africa, to note actually, solely represents a nation in the world to have made provisions for sexual orientation in its initial newly drafted Bill of Rights back in 1999. Although this specific caveat, the famed sexual orientation clause in the country's interim constitution did not obviously replicate publicly into acceptance of homosexuality by majorities in the population. Africa in this case is an interesting place to begin my autobiography in relation to the three categories influencing my life.

Growing up as a male in Africa, in terms of my gender, I had been given a set of societal lines to follow that was seen as satisfactory in the eyes of society at large. When I was young I begin falling in love with the sport of soccer. This mostly male dominant sport was a beginning in lessons on masculinity or in reference, sexual orientation. In Africa we have a great sense of familial orientation that upholds a family unit as the most important aspect of life and when you take a certain sense of closeness you are given at home into the outside world you will learn that not every situation accepts “niceness”. On the street where I would play you had to be tough, while in the house you were loved and shown humility even after being scolded. Finding this balance was literally a mismatched force of nature. I am naturally docile, empathetic individual, very understanding, receptive and comprehensive in general. This doesn't always play well into the masculinity demanded of the nature of the game and can lead to your sexuality being questioned. I learned that sexual orientation seemed to be tied into the way you carry yourself. I was cognizant of others who couldn't find the balance and was able to portray a more “masculine” approach to my game not to mention my demeanor. I find that here in America with the shift towards a more accepting nation of the LGBT communities, kids may at an earlier age be more able to express their true identities and variations in sexuality they begin to acquire. For me to have experienced and find the silver lining around the ages of 7-10, clearly has formally encased many of my innate opinions and d-facto reactions to the issue of sexual orientation. This was something I found played out sometimes outwardly as I grew up and believed many of the mores regarding sexual orientation. Back home I grew up loving the shape