Drag show raises LGBTQ acceptance questions

Edwin J. Viera, Columnist

Tuesday Oct. 13 was one of the most amazing nights of my life because it was the first time I went to a drag show. It was in the Campbell Student Union and the performers were in no uncertain terms, fabulous! I couldn’t believe the amount of skill that the drag queens and kings had.

One factor that made the show amazing was the fact that the performers didn’t seem afraid. I’m taking an intro level oral communication class; trust me, I’ve seen what fear looks like. The people in the show were fearless.

Then I got to thinking about LGBTQ all together and how they are treated in this country. For many years people weren’t sure how to treat them. Now that we know what they are like, what’s really changed for them?

Aside from the fact that they can legally get married in the United States, people are still afraid of them, but do they take time to understand the culture?

While some members of the LGBTQ community allow themselves to be sexually free, others may be closeted, afraid or uncertain about what they want in life.

I couldn’t help but wonder, why are people of the LGBTQ community mistreated? Because they’re misunderstood, or are other people jealous?

In 1982, Alice Walker wrote the story of a young woman who was confined to life so tightly that it squeezed the ability for her to speak her mind out of her body. Walker’s novel, “The Color Purple,” demonstrated the way that women had to live for many years due to a male-dominated society. The same can be said for members of the LGBTQ community because they are battered by the increasingly hot social climate that practically boils them alive.

Jealousy may sound like a strong word, but it accurately describes the way people may start to feel. For one thing, the members of the LGBTQ community are the most free oppressed people in the world. By this, I mean that they are one group of people who are able to fully release the inhibitions of the world and be completely real.

But there is a cost to being who you want to be. In New York State, Governor Andrew Cuomo recently banned transgender discrimination, while in the Indonesian Province of Aceh the punishment for gay sex is 100 lashes.

Mistreatment of LGBTQ people may come from a lack of understanding.

A few days ago, I went to my CWP 102 class and my friend Amber was sick as a dog. She was queasy, tired, she had cold flashes, hot flashes and a sore throat. Once class finished, I walked her to her car to make sure that she didn’t pass out on the way there, or if I needed to take her to the Weigel Health Center.

As we walked to her car, she told me that someone she knew said the reason she was sick was because she doesn’t eat meat. I was shocked, how could someone make that judgment about her when it’s clear that she just got a bit of strep throat or the flu. Then I got to thinking about the way people treat the LGBTQ community, and it finally hit me!

Sometimes people are jealous because they don’t understand the lifestyle choice someone makes, and maybe they never will. In the society we live in today there is a lack of education regarding homosexuality and people demonize what they may not know.

One major example of this is the Salem Witch Trials when women were killed for abnormalities in their lifestyle.

The women of the Salem Witch Trials were doing things out of the ordinary, but should we be punished for not living up to societies norms? If that’s the case, then some people would be arrested, but societies definition of normal constantly changes. All in all, people of the LGBTQ community are often misunderstood.

People may not always understand the world around them, but it’s about time that people started trying to. Otherwise, a piece of society becomes alienated from the rest. What kind of life is that?

If knowledge is power, then some of us are gods among men, while others are beggars seeking out those unknown truths.

In life, we all make decisions, and we shouldn’t be judged for that. For some, it’s more of a sacrifice than others, so people need to learn to start accepting this. The sooner the better, and the sooner a change is going to come.

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