L‘There is nothing wrong with showcasing your true self. You don’t have to live with a lie.’
For the longest time, society discriminated against people who loved someone outside of the regular circle. They were considered evil, not human-like, and even assaulted in most cases. People faced innumerable difficulties to lead a normal and simple life and were judged tremendously.
Let us go through intensively what LGBTQ is so that everything is out on the table.
What is LGBT?
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It stands for Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender. It is considered an umbrella term that includes individuals to identify the diversity of sexuality and gender-based cultures.
Now let us go through the origin of this term and concept.
History of LGBTQ
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Before the 1900s, the people were regarded as the gay community. But later on, many activists believed that it did not include a wide range of people and did not represent all of those people under it. To recognize this inclusion. They added the letter Q, representing all the people who still questioned their identity and were considered queer. Those people who added intersex people added the letter I to the term, resulting in LGBTIQ or LGBT+.
Variants of the Term
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There are many variants of the word that change the arrangement of letters like LGBT or GLBT or sometimes even LGB&T. No hard and fast rule should be followed in a certain manner. It only depends on the preferences of the people. It does not represent any differences between the people. Some people use the term LGBT+ to refer to other related communities like the pansexual and omnisexual are regarded as people belonging to the Bisexual category.
LGBTQIA is sometimes used to add the terms- Queer, Intersex, and Asexual.
Furthermore, in India, the term LGBTIH is used for representing people belonging to the Hijra community.
LGBT in India
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People in India have to face a lot of legal and social differences. During the country’s colonial era, these people were often discriminated against based on laws and marriages. In 2018, The Supreme Court of India rejected homosexuality as a means of a criminal offense under Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code.
In ancient India, homosexuality was never considered a criminal offense in Indian. But when the Britishers ruled over the country, they criminalized it.
There have been so many movements in India for the support of these communities. Still, there are a significant number of people having an objection to LGBTQ communities. A lot of people feel scared of sharing this with their parents, relatives, and friends. People who had past experiences of sharing and revealing this got brutally harassed by society at large.
History of LGBT in India
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In ancient Hinduism, there was a third gender that was acknowledged. For example, in the Mahabharata, and during the Mugham Empire, many people changed their gender.
But when the Britishers took control over the country, they criminalized it. Even after Independence, the law was present for more than 70 years. The Britishers had labeled the famous hijra community as a criminal tribe.
From 2009-2018, there were many times that different people tried to change the rule. And finally, after 9 years the Supreme Court delivered its verdict, favoring people belonging to these communities. They made sure that the Government of India no longer considers it as a criminal offense. The people were asked to spread awareness for other people who were still unaware of this concept.
But there are still many problems faced by people, even after the verdict of the Supreme Court.
Problems faced by LGBTQ in today’s world
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In many small parts of the world, some people are being harassed, being physically and verbally abused. They have been raped under police custody and even by family members. They are thrown out of their houses, which turn to them begging on the streets. Some people are also being killed just because the family members think that their status and respect will fall.
Same-sex marriages are still not legally recognized in the country. In 2011, a court in Haryana granted same-sex marriage between two women. But they started receiving so many death threats from distant family members. There are so many cases where people have a problem accepting gay marriages owing back to many years of patriarchism in the country.
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India is known as a third gender population; such individuals have been regarded as hijras and come under neither a male category nor a female category. These people are considered to be Transgenders in English.
They are regarded as socially and economically backward classes because they have difficulties in obtaining medical facilities, reservation in jobs, and education, and sometimes even a place to live. The court declared that they have a right to change their gender without any medical surgeries and recognition of the third gender in all official matters.
There are many areas in the country for the LGBT community where people can meet and socialize with each other like –
Gay Bombay in Mumbai.
Good as you in Bangalore.
Harmless Hugs in Delhi
Mobbera in Hyderabad, etc.
June 2020 marks the 50th anniversary of the annual LGBTQ+ Pride traditions.
A way of celebrating with other members of the society, Pride Month takes place in June throughout the world to celebrate. Many people not belonging to the community take part in this parade. Many events take place as a way to spread awareness. It is taken as an opportunity to protest in silence without any violence caused. There are many street parties, community events, educational sessions that are all covered by the media and participated by millions of people.
New York has been known for its largest Pride Parade with an estimated 500,000 people participating in it.
Although there are many injustices there, we have come a long way by improving the attitudes of society and encourage their inclusiveness in society.
How did it start?
In 1969, police raided a gay bar in New York and hauled customers outside. New York’s gay community started rioting for about 3 days. A year after the protests, the nation’s first Gay Pride marches were held.
Brenda Howard, a bisexual activist from New York, known as the Mother of Pride, conducted the first-ever Pride march, alongside a week of special events.
Origin of the Rainbow Flag
Picture Credits- Artsy
Gilbert Baker was commissioned by a supervisor in San Francisco as an artist and designer to make a flag for the city’s Pride Celebrations. Gilbert took inspiration from the American Flag with a rainbow to reflect all the people being represented by the term.
As a bonus to this article, here are a few tips that we have gathered for you when you are discovering yourself and coming out!
1) Be patient with yourself, do not force yourself to act in a certain way. Explore the different areas of yourself. Do not push yourself.
2) Be positive about yourself. There is nothing wrong with yourself! You are not different. Hence, don’t get worried.
3) Tell someone who you are extremely close to. They can be your friends or your parents. They will love you no matter what. Give them some time to adjust. So, be patient.
4) If you are unsure about your sexuality, consult with someone who can help you.
5) Don’t worry if these resources don’t help you at all. Follow at your own pace. There is no train that you have to catch.
One day, we hope that you won't have to "come out of the closet". You'll just say that you are in love and that will be all that matters. BeMyCharm always believes in you. We believe that you won't be afraid to show off your true colors, even if it's the entire rainbow.