Levi Seukeran Mr.

Bain Caribbean Studies

Problem Statement
The reasons for or factors contributing to the discrimination or non-discrimination of LGBT teenagers by their peers. A study of Trinidadian society.

Research Objectives
This study intends to: 1. Ascertain whether the discriminatory or non-discriminatory group is larger within the teenaged population. 2. Determine if the majority of each group represents any specific demographic and if so, what accounts for this. 3. Identify the factors which contribute to the opinions held by both groups regarding their LGBT peers. 4. Discover any methods which may be implemented to develop a more tolerant society.

Research Questions

Do the majority of teenagers support or discriminate against their LGBT peers? What commonalities exist within the supporting and non-supporting groups, if any? What reasons can be given for these commonalities? For what reasons do teenagers either support or discriminate against their LGBT peers. What can be done to instil a higher level of tolerance within society?

2. 3. 4. 5.

Within the non-LGBT teenaged community. Glossary of Technical Terms LGBT . More and more teenagers are coming to terms with their sexuality during these adolescent years but their attempts at self-expression have been met with mixed responses. Educational Value This study will attempt to fulfil the previously stated objectives. This holds true as well for Trinidadian society.Statement of the Problem Caribbean society as a whole is widely infamous as being extremely homophobic. The study also intends to sensitise the public to the issue and copies of the study will be forwarded to the Coalition Advocating for the Inclusion of Sexual Orientation (CAISO). Nevertheless. . with the intention of contributing towards developing a tolerant teenaged society by inculcating the values of equality and respect for the rights of others. This discrimination can take the form of verbal and sometimes even physical abuse. and at a younger age as well. it is becoming more obvious that LGBT citizens are beginning to find their voice with the advent of social media and gay-friendly American entertainment. in the leaders of tomorrow.an initialism that collectively refers to “Lesbian. Gay. Bisexual & Transgender” people. there are both those who support and those who discriminate against their LGBT peers. Bullying and derogatory comments are common examples of discrimination which may be observed in many schools across the nation. to contribute to their efforts in developing a more tolerant society.

with two out of three respondents saying they would prefer not to live next to a gay person. . The Norms & Values Report found no major differences between the responses of males and females indicating that neither group represents a significant majority within the “supportive” and “non-supportive” groups. the two issues are homogeneous and so the results of one indicate the other. In Trinidad. However.Literature Review Research on the discrimination of LGBT persons has been being conducted for many years. The present study therefore seeks to verify these results within the teenaged population. (2011). Norms & Values Report: A Nationwide Study on the Degree of Conformity of Social Norms and Values in Trinidad and Tobago. Derek Chadee (2011). The present study will investigate this within the teenaged population as it may vary based on a reason for discrimination being the perceived ‘correctness’ of machismo by young males. commissioned by the Ministry of the People and Social Development and supervised by Dr. a new significance has been placed on the issue. with the post-modern rise in tolerance for these alternative lifestyles in developed nations. While the present study is not specifically focused on support for equal rights but rather discrimination. According to the Norms & Values report. The use of questionnaires was an effective way of conducting the Norms & Values Report as it required the evaluation of a large 1 Ministry of the People and Social Development. 69% of the respondents indicated that they were “unsupportive” of equal rights for LGBT persons and 26% indicated that they were “supportive”1. This factor may not influence females to the same extent. A report by the World Values Survey (2006) found that homosexuals were the group Trinbagonians were most prejudiced against. When analysed by age it was found that younger persons were more “supportive” than older persons. the predominantly homophobic view is obvious within society.

Mohammed also takes a postmodern view on the intolerance displayed by men towards homosexual men.” . (2007). CAPE Caribbean Studies: An Interdisciplinary Approach. it is ‘queer’. Retrieved November 22.html .Jennifer Mohammed Another major factor influencing discrimination against LGBT is religion. It also provided anonymity that respondents might desire when dealing with a topic of this nature. then. Evangelists. which is the hatred of women by men. as a reason for discrimination of homosexual men by other men2. the persons who speak out most strongly against homosexuality are Christians and Muslims3. K. “Anything that threatens this ideal of manhood.com/news/ Evangleists_Catholics_unite_against_gays-106388758. 2 Mohammed. CAPE Caribbean Studies: An Interdisciplinary Approach. (2010). especially when compared with that of atheists (Hunsberger & Altemeyer). a woman. Trinidad Express Newspapers. The article outlines an incident when local Anglican Archbishop Calvin Bess condemned homosexuality in 2005 after the Anglican Church in England said it would ordain gay priests. from http://www. 3 Baldeosingh. Catholics unite against gays. identifies misogyny. Malaysia: Macmillan Publishers Limited. She claims that men define themselves by sexual relationships with women and the macho behaviours that they believe makes them attractive to women. in a questionnaire designed to test attitudes towards homosexuals. it was found that Christian fundamentalists revealed high levels of bigotry. must be stamped out. because it is not real.trinidadexpress.sample’s opinions. According to an article on the Trinidad Express Newspaper website. 2011. Also. She claims that these misogynic men display intolerance for homosexual relationships because a man is taking the place of an inferior being. Jennifer Mohammed in her book. The present study intends to investigate these and more factors influencing discrimination and to determine their influence among the teens in Trinidadian society. J.

Also little other information concerning the levels of discrimination in Trinidadian society specifically is available. Questionnaires have proven to be an effective method of gathering information for previous studies and will be used in the present study to collect data. 4 Streitmatter. R. . The present study will take this information into account when addressing the issue of increasing tolerance among the teenaged population. He claims that the incorporation of homosexuals into popular television shows and teen magazines. and their portrayal in a positive light. (2003). in his study of how to combat homophobia among American teenagers. it focusses neither on the teenaged population nor methods to improve the current level. accredits youth media in promoting tolerance in America4. How Youth Media Can Help Combat Homophobia Among American Teenagers. This method would prove ineffective in Trinidad as little to no such content is available from local media. Although the Ministry of the People and Social Development’s Norms & Values Report gives some idea as to the level of tolerance of LGBT persons in Trinidadian society. This is what this study intends to achieve.Rodger Streitmatter. This information was gathered by taking samples of popular teen magazines and television shows based on the criteria of popularity and the inclusion of gay and lesbian content. is largely responsible for the growing levels of tolerance amongst American teens. The Norms & Values Report in Trinidad & Tobago also shows a direct co-relation between level of education and tolerance of homosexuals. GLAAD Center for the Study of Media & Society.

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