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Digital Subscriptions > Gay Times > August 2017 > Class of 2017

Class of 2017

We believe the young people are our future. Teach them well and let them lead the way. But while many of us are clinging to the dying days of our youth, it’s easy to overlook what it’s like to be a young LGBT+ person growing up today. In a post-Trump, post-Brexit world, what are the fears and anxieties of our young people? What’re their dreams and aspirations? Do they feel safe? Scared? Nurtured? Betrayed? Supported? We asked Stonewall’s Young Campaigner of the Year Mitch Price to speak to young LGBT+ people to find out. And what better time to do it as we celebrate the historic anniversary of the partial decriminalisation of homosexuality?

Same-sex marriage pushed forward social and political equality for many LGBT+ people, but now that it’s legal, the focus of pushing equality further and maintaining these rights has minimised; people seem to think that LGBT+ equality is complete.

Many LGBT+ people are now anxious that their rights may be jeopardised by the increasing influence of the DUP and by Britain leaving the European Court of Justice once we officially leave the European Union. Without the future implementation of this European court protecting human rights in Britain, many laws surrounding LGBT+ rights could be repealed or changed.

Britain has witnessed a disproportionate rise in hate speech and crimes since voting to leave the European Union. Homophobic hate crimes rose to 147% after Brexit. Last year, there was an increase to almost 7,200 homophobic hate crimes in England and Wales. In March of this year, a young man had a glass smashed in his face in London while holding his boyfriend’s hand. Soon after that, a gay couple were attacked on a London train by a group of thugs on Valentine’s Day.

But why is there still such a prominence of homophobic attacks in 2017?

Although the LGBT+ community haven’t been direct targets of alt-right rhetoric, the normalisation of hate speech and divisiveness has elicited a more hostile and violent environment for an array of minorities.

The Pulse shooting last year in Orlando claimed the lives of 49 people, but more deeply represented a homophobic objection against LGBT+ rights. The catastrophic attack killed and injured 102 individuals, while emitting an unsettling message to LGBT+ youth of hatred about their identities. Unlike other violent attacks which indiscriminately incite terror, Pulse demonstrated that LGBT+ people are still targets in liberal countries assumed to be tolerant.

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About Gay Times

Got Woodward? In the latest issue of Gay Times, we get our hands on the newest Hollyoaks Hunk, Adam Woodward. Elsewhere in this issue: RuPaul's Drag Race season 9 winner Sasha Velour on the importance of history; a day in the life of one of the few openly gay men in Cairo; the state of homosexual equality in the commonwealth; the next generation of queer kids; Rainbow Riots in Uganda; up close and personal with the stars of Gay Britannia; Martine McCutcheon on her affinity to gay men; Philip C Baldwin on being ostracised by the community when he was diagnosed with both HIV and Hepatitis C; plus style, travel, culture and much more!
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