How Feminism Has Positively Affected the Fight for Equality in the LGBTQ+ Community
by Christine Kinori
Human rights are global. However, if we all campaign for human rights without mentioning the specific groups of people suffering from discrimination and violence, we are not making any difference. Over the years, feminism has positively impacted the fight for equality in the lives of LGBTQ people worldwide.
When we focus on the concept of human rights, it is common knowledge that we all have equal rights irrespective of our sexual orientation, sexual identity, or gender. However, this is not usually the case as LGBTQ+ people are subjected to inequality in several areas of their lives. These include marriage, adoption and parenting rights, healthcare, housing, and sometimes even education.
For decades, women have struggled with inequality in their workplaces and from the government. And despite being the largest percentage in terms of population, only a meager 14.6% are in leadership positions. And making matters worse, women earn 80 cents for every dollar men make, despite being more skilled than men. They are also more prone to rape and domestic violence. And since LGBTQ+ folks and women face almost the same issues regarding abuse of their rights, it is only right that they come together and fight for their rights. Feminism has given a few insights and helped in guiding how people are fighting for LGBTQ+ rights. For example:
Dismantling the belief that Sex & Gender Should Define Our Roles in Life
Traditionally, people believed that “a woman’s place was in the kitchen.” Despite the advancement that we have made in technology and knowledge, some people are still rooted in this belief. You find women are rarely given positions of power in the workplace, and when they do, they have to work twice or thrice as hard as their male counterparts. The same happens with the LGBTQ+ community as they are subjected to immeasurable violence and discrimination in their homes, workplaces, and society. That is why we must continue to fight for equal rights for women and LGBTQ+ people.
Feminists seek to dismantle the belief that our gender is fixed throughout our lives and that we should die either male or female. Although this is true for many, it’s not the reality for everyone. Our identities change throughout our lives, and it is time people accepted this fact.
The discrimination against women and LGBTQ+ people is based on sex and gender, and that is why, in many cases, feminists and the LGBTQ+ movement have joined hands to fight for equal rights worldwide.
Women Holding Positions of Powers in Churches
If there is a place that LGBTQ+ folks are discriminated against most, it is in the church, because conservatives believe it is ungodly to be a member of the community. However, this is slowly changing as women redefine leadership in churches by acting as role models for young people and pushing for gender equality in their practices. This shows that everything is possible, and if women can hold leadership positions in churches, LGBTQ+ people should also not shy away from seeking God. For instance, the Pope embraces our LGBTQ+ brethren as he said that we are all children of God and nobody should be made to feel miserable.
Research on Issues Affecting Women and LGBTQ+ People in Workplaces
Increase in research on HRM (human resource management) practices that prevent women and queer people from advancing in their careers. Gender has diversified to include lesbians, gays, bisexual, transgender, and queer people, and companies should be considerate when recruiting. They can do this by providing the LGBTQ+ community with safe spaces to express themselves freely without judgment and discrimination. HRM also ensures women and members of the queer community are not mistreated, bullied, or sexually harassed by those in the position of power.
Serving in Public Offices
Previously, it was rare to find women holding positions of power in the government. But times are changing as now we have a woman Vice President and an entire Squad of progressive women in Congress, with the number only growing. The same applies to the queer community. As of a few years ago, you wouldn’t find someone gay openly vying for office and being elected. However, as the years go by, people are slowly embracing us more and more. For instance, over 10 members of the LGBTQ+ community in the current U.S. government were elected to the office this past election cycle. This will help uphold the LGBTQ+ community’s rights and push for the laws that are good for everyone.
To conclude, feminism and LGBTQ movements go hand in hand as they fight against discrimination based on sex and gender. Although the fight for equality has persisted for years, we still always have room for improvement. Women are defying the limitations that society is imposing on them by vying for leadership positions in churches, government, and workplaces. And LGBTQ+ folks should take this as an example; they should continue to rise until equality becomes part and parcel of their lives.
About the Author:
Christine Siamanta Kinori grew up in a little village in Kenya known as Loitoktok near the border of Kenya and Tanzania. All she wanted to do when she grew up was to explore the world. Her curiosity led her to join Nairobi University to pursue a degree in Journalism and Mass Communications. She later got a job with an amazing travel magazine Nomad Africa which gave her the opportunity to explore Africa. She also writes for numerous travel websites about Africa and tries to create a new narrative in the media about our aesthetic continent.
Christine claims to have somewhat unhealthy addiction to TV and reading, as it is a fun way to keep herself occupied during the long journeys for her travel writing. She is also a believer of letting people be their beautiful selves. To her, love is love and it is the greatest gift we have as humans.