Are Civil Rights Movement and the LGBTQA+ Movement the Same Kind of Struggle?
Since necessity is the mother of invention, social change was the need behind the emergence of the Civil Rights Movement as well as the LGBTQA+ Movement. The two movements differ in the social change they pursue. These movements have led to intensive social and cultural changes in most institutions. The civil rights movement was chiefly established by African Americans and was primarily designed to end racial discrimination and obtain the same rights under the law. On the other hand, the LGBTQA+ social movements advocate for social justice of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people. Gender roles are the primal focus of these movements. Based on their nature, negative experiences encountered, and achievements attained, we explore the similarity that exists between the civil rights and the LGBT movements.
The Nature of the Movements
The quest for justice and equality is a trait inherent in both movements. The members of either movement comprise a minority of the populace facing discrimination in one respect or another. The civil rights movement advocated for justice and equal treatment under the law and abolishment of slavery. All this discrimination emanated from one’s race and color, which divided the society into numerous classes, each having particular privileges. The denial of basic civil rights as well as voting rights catalyzed the emergence of the civil rights movement. Similarly, the LGBT movement aims to end discrimination they face due to their gender identity and sexual orientation. This group fights to achieve equal treatment and recognition under the law and constitution. The members hold certain personal beliefs on gender roles that contradict the existing and accepted societal norms and standards that prevail in the majority.
Negative Experiences Encountered
Although the activism of these two movements was intense at different times in history, both groups came across numerous negative experiences. The protesters of these movements undergo the mistreatment, thorough beatings, and hosing down. Oppression and social discrimination is also prevalent. African Americans were discriminated against physically, socially, emotionally, and financially before they started pursuing their equal treatment. The same case applies to LGBT people who are traumatized once they declare their sexual orientations publicly. LGBT people are denied marriage and African-Americans were not allowed to intermarry with other white people.
Through their persistent and consistent demands to cause a social change, these movements have attained success in some respects. The civil rights movement’s activists triumphed over racial discrimination in the 1960’s when racial equality was formally legislated. Shortly afterwards, interracial marriages were recognized legally. Although it has taken some time, this is socially accepted by other races. On the same note, the LGBT movements have caused numerous legal changes in favor of their opinions and beliefs.
Although the civil rights movement and the LGBTQA+ movement differ in some respects, the two movements exhibit more similarities of being the same kind of struggles than the differences they portray. Their nature to pursue social and cultural reforms brings out the first similarity between them. Secondly, the synonymity of the ill treatments the members of the two movements undergo portrays their similarity. Finally, the attainment of some degree of success in their endeavors shows the strong resemblance that the two groups possess. After considering and evaluating numerous aspects of the civil rights movement and the LGBTQA+ movement, there are more reasons favoring the similarity between them as opposed to their differences.
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