UK Core Citizenship Essay
UKCore Citizenship Essay
Throughout the course, many issues discussed are different nowadayscompared to how they were at the founding of the nation. The coursealso explored the different pathways through which citizens of agiven nation can influence actions of the government. This essaydiscusses how the history of African-American civil rights haschanged and the changes in civil rights of homosexuals in UnitedStates. The impacts of these issues on my political socialization,and changes in people’s perception concerning these issues arediscussed in this essay.
Before 19th century, Africa-Americans were perceived as inferiorcompared to other white Americans. Actually, most slaves in theUnited States were African-Americans. In the 19th and 20th century,things changed and the perception of American citizens towardsAfrica-Americans improved drastically. Several events led to adrastic change in perception and the first such event was SupremeCourt ruling. The Supreme Court ruled that segregation of individualsbased on color or race is not allowed and that all people are thesame no matter their conditions. The death of Emmett Till, a 14 yearsold boy is another big event that led to a change in perception. Tillwas brutally murdered because of shouting at a white woman nearMississippi. During his burial, the mother insisted that all thethousands of people available in the burial should be allowed to seethe mutilated body. The sight of the body led to change ofperceptions and many people started seeing the African-Americans in adifferent dimension. Other instances such as Martin Luther Kingspeech, led to changed perception and deeper understanding of civilrights for the black Americans (Steenbergen 12).
My parents played a big role for me to change the perception andunderstand the civil rights of African-Americans. My father who is apastor of a local church in our hometown always stressed to me from atender age, the importance of treating all individuals equally,regardless of the race. In the church, my father used to teachteenagers every Sunday afternoon the importance of sticking togetheras sisters and brothers regardless of the race. On the other hand, mymum who witnessed some of her close friends who wereAfrican-Americans being mistreated, had developed a passion for theblack people. All her discussions revolved around the uniqueness ofthe African-American people and how individuals from different racesought to be treated equally. The consistent speeches from my parentsmade me develop a positive attitude towards African-American and Igrew to know all people are equal.
Education has played a critical part in my socialization andunderstanding the plight of African-American. The injustices thatfaced the black people in the early days were taught well in bothhigh school and university. I also learned a lot about themistreatment of the black Americans from available documentaries.After internalizing the harsh situation subjected to theAfrican-Americans, I developed a strong opposition towards oppressionof their civil rights. A pathway need to be developed that will leadthis nation to another level of equality where discrimination willnot exist. Culture change provides the best pathway to eliminatesocial inequalities that still exist today. Through culture change,good progress has been made towards equality. However, more need tobe done because racial discrimination still exists in some sectors ofthe economy. If the young generation is educated about the equalityof all people, then equality of all people is attainable.
Lesbians, gays, bisexuals and transgender communities (LGBT) arefacing discrimination just like the African American. Civil rightsand the change in the perception, in the LGBT, has contributed toequal treatment plight. LGBT rights were first recognized in 1996after a ruling by the Supreme Court allowing some cities to passanti-discrimination to lesbians and gays. Passing the ruling by thecourt was a clear indication that there is existed discrimination inthe society against lesbians and gay and it needed to be ceased. TheSupreme Court ruled in Romer and Evans on anti-discriminatorystatutes in some cities. The event happened in 2010 that triggeredinsights into gays and lesbians when a student committed suicideafter a video of him with another man was recorded and posted onsocial media. The video had been recorded by fellow dorm mates andwere amplified through various social media channels. This wasfollowed by successive suicides by other teenagers who were from theLesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community being bullied evenon the social media (Steenbergen 17).
In 2013, the Supreme Court ruled that Section 3b of the Defendantof Marriage Act was unconstitutional and this influenced the Lesbian,gay, bisexual and transgender community to fight for equal rights inmarital life and against discrimination. Education and peer havepositively influenced the LGBT in relation to discrimination andtheir rights. Some courses such as sociology help one understand thechallenges that the Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender communityface daily. Such courses help in personal development and as a helperto the Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community. Peers areanother agent of change, in high school the of the use of the word“gay” was regarded as unacceptable. When an individual grows upone understands the groups and provides a voice for them. Thinking asa group and failure to attain education causes individuals to do andsay things that they ought not to have said or done. Using thehomophobic words made them unappealing and unimpressive. Whenunlearned people use the term “gay” in most of theirconversations, it sticks in their mind and rings like a bell and thismakes them not to have a chance to think before they speak.
Some states have not yet allowed marriage for same sex and this isattributed to the fact that the endeavor is ongoing because of theLGBT. The court remains as one of the most effective pathways thatcan be used. Lobbying and litigation are also being used althoughthey are slow, attracts huge attention and cause emotional debates.In the history of America, there are have groups that strive topromote equal rights and treatment in the LGBT. Nowadays theperception among the LGBT is changing though there are still somenegative perspectives. These groups have struggled to eliminate thediscrimination as a barrier. The use of pathways by these groups willhelp in a great way to command the influence, motivate and persuadethose willing to protect the Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendercommunity. Some courses such as sociology help one understands thechallenges that the Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender communityface daily.
Steenbergen, Bart V. The Condition of citizenship. LondonThousand Oaks, Calif: Sage, 2004. Print.