In today’s society there should be no discrimination for people who are gay, straight, bisexual, male, female, religious or non religious. We are all equal. The sad reality is that there is discrimination. Discrimination against people who are gay or lesbians is called homophobia and today there appears to be some of this happening. We in the United Kingdom should be a culture of tolerance and diversity. Employers in particular are restricted by laws which prevent them from being able to discriminate.
Shaun Clark walked into the jobcentre in Burnley wearing a “Nobody knows I’m gay” T Shirt. He got told that he should not be wearing it and he simply said this is discrimination. He has been on jobseekers allowance for 4 years. This is contradictory of the law, and people are meant to be treated equally without judgement. He was merely using the T Shirt as a form of self expression, and he saw nothing wrong with it at all. He told South West News Service he was proud to be gay and there was nothing wrong with wearing the T Shirt.
Difference should be celebrated and tolerated, and people with differences should be able to express themselves. The job centre is employed to deal with the general public and they should do so by having an open mind. The job centre are not employers, so they have no right to say whether or not someone can wear a T Shirt that defines that they are gay.
The other moral and ethical view is that he seems to be being punished for being gay. It is not wrong to be gay; it is a form of self expression and self identity. The fact that he was unemployed makes him vulnerable but lack of freedom of expression makes it even worse.
On the other hand if people go into the job centre wearing a T Shirt saying that they are gay they are opening themselves up for criticism because occasionally employers do go into the job centre and Job Seekers would need to be considered well dressed.
To conclude, Shaun Clark’s T Shirt was his form of self expression. Diversity should be celebrated, not ridiculed and he should not be punished for wearing it. If we were all the same it would be boring. Shaun himself said he was proud to be gay and self expression should be allowed.
Written by Claire Collier