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The First Days of Spring: An Analysis of the International Treatment of Homosexuality

Description: In recent history, the rights of gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgendered (LGBT) persons have been in constant fluctuation. Many states criminalize homosexual behavior while other states legally recognize same-sex marriages and same-sex adoptions. There are also irregular patterns where LGBT interest groups form across the globe. With this research project, I begin to explain why these discrepancies in the treatment of homosexuality and the formation of LGBT interest groups occur. I develop a theory that the most obvious contrast across the globe occurs when analyzing the treatment of homosexuals in OECD member states versus non-OECD countries. OECD nations tend to see the gay community struggle for more advanced civil rights and government protections, while non-OECD states have to worry about fundamental human rights to life and liberty. I find that this specific dichotomization is what causes the irregular LGBT interest group formation pattern across the globe; non-OECD nations tend to have fewer LGBT interest groups than their OECD counterparts. When looking at why non-OECD nations and OECD nations suppress the rights of their gay citizens, I find that religion plays a critical role in the suppression of the gay community. In this analysis, I measure religion several different ways, including the institution of an official state religion as well as the levels of religiosity within a nation. Regardless of how this variable is manipulated and measured, statistical analysis continuously shows that religion’s influence is the single most significant factor in leading to a decrease in both human and civil rights for gays and lesbians across the globe. Further analysis indicates that Judaism plays the most significant role out the three major world religions in the suppression of civil rights for homosexuals in OECD nations.
Date: December 2013
Creator: Galvan, Michael R.
Partner: UNT Libraries

[Group of Ten People at a Table]

Description: Photograph of six men and 4 women, stand together in front of red upholstered chairs. They are in a dimly lit interior space, and two wine glasses are visible in front of the chairs, likely sitting on a table. A few name tags on individual's shirts are visible; front second from right reads:Jeanine Fedler, front right:Holly Womack, far right:Ken Hoover.
Date: unknown
Partner: UNT Libraries Special Collections

[Group of Six People Posing Together]

Description: Photograph of four women and two men smiling, with arms around each other. Third from left is Karen Estes. They are inside of an expansive-looking building. Behind them hangs an orange eastern-style piece of tapestry-type fabric. Sign in the left background reads "silent auction".
Date: unknown
Partner: UNT Libraries Special Collections

[Photograph of Deneen Robinson]

Description: Photograph of a Deenen Robinson, wearing a black and white polka dotted dress and red lipstick. She stands near a red brick building, close to a window. Behind her is a wall mounted lantern and a large palm-like plant.
Date: unknown
Partner: UNT Libraries Special Collections