Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgendered (GLBT)

Medical Students of Canada




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Even if you’re heterosexual, you should still support the GLBT cause, because:


Homophobia is causally linked to patriarchy / male domination of the society – this is a common assertion in feminist theory, well-developed in Suzanne Pharr's book Homophobia: A Weapon of Sexism. Inverness CA: Chardon Press 1988.


Homophobia as a weapon of sexism

Homophobia is the social basis of male supremacy



See also:

On homophobia, sexism and diversity


Ten things that men can do to end sexism and male violence against women


The roots of homophobia – a New York Times article, 1990



Other ways that anti-gay prejudice affects straight people:


1. Homophobia forces us to act "macho" if we are a man or "feminine" if we are a woman. This limits our individuality and self-expression.

2. Homophobia puts pressure on straight people to act aggressively and angrily towards LGBTQ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgendered, questioning) people.

3. Homophobia makes it hard to be close friends with someone of the same sex.

4. Homophobia often strains family and community relationships.

5. Homophobia causes youth to become sexually active before they are ready in order to prove they are "normal." This can lead to an increase in unwanted pregnancies and STDs (sexually transmitted diseases).

6. Homophobia prevents vital information on sex and sexuality to be taught in schools. Without this information, youth are putting themselves at a greater risk for HIV and other STDs.

7. Homophobia can be used to hurt a straight person if they "appear to be gay."

8. Homophobia makes it hard for straight people and LGBTQ people to be friends.

9. Homophobia along with racism, sexism, classism, etc. makes it hard to put an end to AIDS.

10. Homophobia makes it hard to appreciate true diversity and the unique traits that are not mainstream or "normal."

For more info, see Homophobia: How We All Pay the Price, edited by Warren J. Blumenfeld, Boston: Beacon Press: 1992.


So, ways to combat prejudice and homophobia as a straight ally:


1. Organize discussion groups in class or after school to talk about the how homophobia affects straight people as well.

2. Use neutral labels like "partner" or "significant other" instead of "boyfriend," "girlfriend," etc. when writing papers/emails or talking to others.

3. Bring up LGBTQ issues in conversations with friends or discussions in class.

4. Interrupt anti-LGBTQ jokes, comments or any other behaviors that make homophobia appear OK.

5. Put LGBTQ-positive posters in the halls and classrooms or wear shirts, buttons, etc. that promote tolerance.

6. Don't make assumptions about peoples' sexual orientations or gender identities. Assume there are LGBTQ people in all classes, sports, meetings, daily life, etc.

7. Don't assume that "feminine-acting men" and "masculine-acting women" are not heterosexual.

8. Don't assume that "macho males" or "feminine females" are heterosexual.





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This website is sponsored by Diversity in Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, University of Toronto. We would like to thank Alia Qureshi Emili for the original website creation and design and the University of Toronto for providing us the webspace. The materials found on this website do not necessarily reflect the views of the University of Toronto