If you are interested in learning more about the LGBT community, either because you are a member or because you have a loved one who is, you will want to start at the beginning. Finding out about the origins of the movement will not only allow you to be an informed conversationalist, it will provide you with a greater appreciation for those who have helped to make a growing acceptance possible.
First of all, it is important to realize that there have been LGBT people throughout history. In some societies, this has been accepted at certain times while others have engaged in more reserved opinions. The Abrahamic religions of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam all have restrictions regarding sexuality and sexual orientation, which has created problems for folks in many different countries over the course of time. With penalties often as severe as death, the societal restrictions associated with religion-dominated countries has created undue hardship for countless LGBT people.
In the United States, the original settlers were often associated with these types of thinking, and many of the laws were designed to reflect this rigid state of mind. In fact, there are even some laws on the books outlawing certain heterosexual acts as well. However, these laws are not enforced anymore and the illegality of homosexuality has all but disappeared. While a few backward-thinking people still want to restrict rights in their neck of the woods, that is by far the minority of people in the country today.
Fifty, and even twenty years ago, there were severe societal penalties associated with coming out of the closet. This could include lost job opportunities, friendships and even being shunned by family members who felt ashamed. However, that has been changing. While celebrities were the first to be lauded by the media for opening up, everyday folks were soon to follow.
There have been several people involved in the LGBT movement. The HIV and AIDS epidemic of the 1990’s helped to bring the conversation about homosexuality to the forefront as citizens in cities across the world were dying in droves from the untreatable condition.
The sexual revolution of the 1960’s also played a part in bringing sexual conversations out in the open instead of hidden secrets that nobody wanted to talk about.
Today, the government has made strides in protecting all people from hate crimes and injustice thanks to the pioneers in the LGBT movement and others who have taken up their cause.