A Simplified History of Homosexuality


The fight for equal rights exists among many people who struggle to just be recognized as people. People have fought to be equal regardless of their race, religion, ethnicity, the color of their skin, and their homosexuality for millenniums now. Homosexuality was very prevalent during the times of the Greeks and the Romans, before Emperor Constantine. Back in their times, bisexuality was seen as a cultural norm, while now even in the most progressive countries, a homosexual person might face discrimination. Homosexual people and trans-gender people have faced a lot of discrimination throughout history, and they still struggle for the rights to be themselves in most places.

There have been many instances of famous people in the past who have been homosexual or speculated to have been homosexual. There are many homosexual people, who washed over their very obvious lovers- said to have only been very close friends or roommates. Some speculated homosexual people from the past include Alexander the Great, Sappho, Leonardo Da Vinci, Michelangelo, Oscar Wilde, and Freddie Mercury. Many of these people were closer to what is considered in the modern day as bisexual, rather than being either the modern interpretations of being gay or lesbian.

Most people who aren’t homosexual, do not really understand what it means to be homosexual. They will use examples of famous historical people being with someone of the opposite sex, as proof of their heterosexuality. These people tend not to understand that sexuality, is in fact in a spectrum, and not a definite thing. A lot of people claim that being gay is a choice, and for people who genuinely believe this, I wholeheartedly believe they are either bi-sexual or pan-sexual themselves. These people who claim homosexuality is a choice are most likely people who just choose to suppress their own sexuality. A bi-sexual/pan-sexual person has sexual attraction to all sexes. Someone might be bi-sexual or pan-sexual, but that doesn’t mean they like all genders equally. They could very well have a preference for one over the other. Most of those “historically” homosexual people have a preference, but might still like both sexes.

With this understanding of homosexuality, and its presence in the past, some might have trouble understanding where the hate for homosexuals came from. Like most communities and groups of people who are hated or ostracized by society for something that they cannot truly control, the answer is religion. More specifically religious extremism is used as a means to control other people. Jesus has said many times, “to love thy neighbor,” and has taught people to be compassionate and loving to other people. But, some people chose to ignore these sayings from Jesus. The bible never even directly mentioned homosexuality as a crime or something that was seen to be bad or a sinful activity. Even if it had been considered a sinful activity, hatred against them still wouldn’t be approved by Jesus. Jesus believed that anyone can be redeemed, no matter the sins that they have committed. Prostitution is a sin in Christianity, but Jesus was a friend with a prostitute. Even though Jesus stood for compassion and love for other people, somehow some people were still able to use his ideology and ideals as an excuse for hating a group of people.

Many times in history, religion has been a way to spread hatred for certain groups of people. Time and time again, homosexuals have been the target for this hatred. Islam is another religion that preaches love for all, but has a history of hurting many different types of people or oppressing many different types of peoples. In the modern world, the countries with the most anti-homosexual laws are those that are generally controlled by an extremist Islamic government. The 13 countries that have death penalties for homosexuals are Iran, Yemen, Brunei, Mauritania, Nigeria, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Afghanistan, Somalia, Sudan, United Arab Emirates, and Pakistan. All of these countries have Islam in common, and unlike Jesus, their prophet wasn’t so kind, compassionate, and loving towards people from all walks of life. The Quran, unlike the Bible, had set a clear precedent for hatred of homosexual people, and how being homosexual was equivalent to going against god himself. The hadiths, collected traditions of Islam written down after the death of Mohammad, explicitly claimed hatred towards homosexuals and how it was wrong for someone to be a homosexual.

Modern day western countries, in North America and Western Europe, are the countries that are the most progressive and tolerant towards homosexual people, even through intolerant people exist in many of those nations.  Many of  these countries give homosexual people constitutional rights which is a positive. Hopefully, more countries will grow in tolerance and not use religion as a tool to hate others.