I just finished my cultural diversity final project. The subject was "Race and Your Community". I did talk about racial issues in this town and rural communities in general, but how can I talk about minorities and fail to mention my own minority group? Here is the text in my final project. Here is a sample:
Do people in my community look like me? The answer is yes. I do not appear to be different. My differences from the average citizen of Amoret have nothing to do with the color of my skin or my ethnic background. The leaders of the community are not likely to go out of their way to mistreat me, because they have other things to worry about than who I prefer to have as my partner in life. The citizens would probably treat me differently if they knew. I base that upon what I have heard people in the town say about an openly gay man who used to live in this town. There are some who are accepting, especially his parents. They happen to own one of the few businesses in Amoret, and they even support legal recognition of same-sex relationships.
The text does cover people like me but not enough. A week devoted to the struggles of the GLBT community would have been a good idea for the class, because there was a time when we were treated even worse than we are now. Gay people had to remain secretive for many years up until the Stonewall riots. I actually watched a documentary on the subject. It was fascinating how an underworld counter-culture developed, one that included secret societies where gay people secretly planned events and ways to fight discrimination.
As for the media, there do not seem to be any stories about homosexuals in rural areas. The media does, however, seem to have a fascination with homosexuals in general, except for what actually makes us gay. In my opinion, shows like Queer Eye simply perpetuate stereotypes of the effeminate homosexual who is obsessed with fashion and personal grooming.
I am fortunate though. This town is not particularly nice to racial minorities. This town still has a law on the books stating that African Americans are not to be allowed in the town after sunset. Such a law is archaic and should be removed, but the city council and the mayor do not seem to think it warrants removal even though such laws are unconstitutional and outright unconscionable.