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The group that I chose to research was LGBT. Hate crimes against this group are nothing new. Throughout this article, President Obama made this group socially acceptable. Legalizing and pushing boundaries, Obama did amazing things and was able to bring those who were in the dark finally had the confidence to come into the light. Hate crimes against this group come from all walks of life, all age groups and all religious backgrounds. Once it was discovered that having sexual and emotional connections to those of the same sex was genetic and out of the control of the person, more became acceptable however; there are groups of people who believe that this is an abomination. In the case of Matthew Shepard, a gay student from University of Wyoming, he was beaten and left to die by his peers due to his sexual orientation.

One organization that protects the LGBT groups is Parents, Family & Friend of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG). This organization was founded in 1972 and is the first and largest Gay and Lesbian association in the United States. With peer to peer supports 24 hours a day and over 400 chapters throughout the United States, the amount of support is only growing.


This discussion will focus on the impact that anti-LGBT hate crimes have on the LGBT community. Bell and Perry (2015) conducted a pilot study to explore the extent of which the consequences of anti-LGBT hate crimes affect members of the LGBT community. The researchers identified five common themes amongst non-victims inside the LGBT community. The first was the negative emotional and psychological impacts. Participants expressed feelings such as anger, fear, anxiety, and depression. These individuals also reported decreases in self-worth and self-confidence (Bell & Perry, 2015). The second theme identified was victim blaming, which non-victims utilized to manage fear and to engage in self-preservation. The next theme is behavior modification. Many of the participants reported changes in the way they dressed and/or expressed themselves in order to avoid being targeted (Bell & Perry, 2015). Another thee was activism. Some participants reported feeling moved to advocate in an attempt to bring awareness to LGBT individuals being targeted. The most dominant theme however, was the impact on individuals’ decision to disclose his or her sexual orientation, resulting in more LGBT individuals living “closeted” lives (Bell & Perry, 2015). Bell and Perry (2015) concluded that even though non-victims do not experience the crimes directly, they experiences negative consequences associated with the crimes.

The Human Rights Campaign (HRC) foundation is a civil rights organization advocating for the LGBT community. This organization was at the forefront of the fight for marriage equality and continues to draw national attention to issues affecting the LGBT community (HRC, n.d.). The HRC Foundation’s Children, Youth & Families Program provides professional training, program consulting, technical assistance, and ongoing support for LGBT communities (HRC, n.d.). HRC is attempting to make the world a place where LGBT individuals are provided with their basic equal rights and can live open, honest lives while they feel safe in their homes, jobs, and communities.


What do members of the community describe as the loss to their community?

After the Sandy Hook shooting, the community came together in support of those who were directly affected. Those of the children and adults that were shot by Adam Lanza. Adam was a 20-year old male shot his mother, then proceeded to Sandy Hook Elementary School where he then opened fire on children and teachers.

What do they describe as their greatest challenges?

According to news reports from, the community consensus was that rebuilding the safety and trust in the community was the biggest challenge. They also had reports stating that the children had the biggest struggle with trusting school officials to keep them safe as well.

What changes in their communities have taken place as a result?

According to, there have been 210 new gun laws enacted since the Sandy Hook shooting. All the newly enacted laws relate to gun safety and accessibility.


Seung-Hui Cho, a senior at Virginia Tech, shot and killed 32 people and wounded 17 others in two separate attacks (another six people were injured escaping from classroom windows), approximately two hours apart, before committing suicide. In the aftermath of the massacre, authorities found no evidence that Cho, who was born in South Korea and moved to America with his family in 1992, had specifically targeted any of his victims which was widely reported as such.

In 2011, Virginia Tech was ultimately fined by the U.S. Department of Education for failing to issue a prompt campus-wide warning after Cho shot his first two victims. School officials sent an email notification about the dorm shooting to students and faculty at 9:26 that morning. According to the Department of Education, the message was vague and did not indicate there had been a murder or that the gunman was still at large.

According to Immel &Hadder (2008), the tragedy prompted numerous studies, and that led to widespread changes and improvements across the country. Virginia Tech and other schools now have systems to send alerts to students through texting and social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter. The system in place at the time of the incident was not very effective.

Some the students, staff, and faculty within the Virginia Tech Community suffers from PTSD. Many students never returned to campus after that fateful day, because of the fear and stress of the situation. The aftermath of this tragedy has left many people searching for answers as to why Seung-Hui Cho went on this killing spree and whether his horrible rampage could have been prevented It is still a sadness in the VA Tech community, there are changes on and around campus but most people will never forget what happed on that fateful day.

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