AZ EGY BÁN GYA HOW TO PUT EQUALITY INTO PRACTICE? - MEK

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AZ EGY BÁN GYA HOW TO PUT EQUALITY INTO PRACTICE? - MEK

IV. Putting equality into practiceinterpreted in a static social context or moral universe where the onlyactive agents of change are social minority groups who should activelyassimilate to the norms handed down to them by the majority, orequality is interpreted in more flexible terms as a joint achievementresulting from mutual efforts of various social segments and coalitionsoriented towards gaining ‘different but equal’ rights and opportunities.Following Carl F. Stychin’s analysis of sexual citizenship in theEuropean Union, differences between active and passive citizenshipcould be observed: in comparison with the ‘passivity’ of Europeancitizenship characterised by enjoyment of rights being – handed downfrom above and – “centred in a private, depoliticized sphere”, sexualcitizenship involving the achievement of rights through social strugglecan be seen as “an active, public, and potentially democraticendeavour” occurring now in national as well as in broader, Europeantransnational contexts (Stychin, 2001:292). In the European Unionsexual orientation has been becoming an identity with ‘antidiscriminationrights attachments’ which “raises the possibility of amovement towards a European-wide consensus around the meaning ofsexuality, not only as warranting anti-discrimination protection, but alsomore fundamentally as a politicized identity” (Stychin, 2001:295).Sexual citizenship is therefore increasingly being grounded in a ‘politicsof affinity’ operating with politicized flexible ‘affinities’ and coalitions,rather than with fixed, monolithic identities (cf. Phelan, 1995).However, this new politics of affinity is meaningful only as being part ofa coalition-based model that allows for the effective politicalcooperation of heterogeneous LGBT crowds: “It is through active,democratic political strategies that coalitions will continually emerge,change, and evolve, as individuals identify (or not) with particulartrajectories of rights struggles. Sexual identification undoubtedly is abond which may bring peoples together, but the differences betweenthem seem far too great to establish anything like a fixed and stableidentity. […] An example could be common endeavours and mutualsupport around rights struggles between transgendered people andlesbians, gays, and bisexuals, which have been facilitated by thecharacter of EU anti-discrimination law with its focus on ‘sex’discrimination. While dialogue across identifications here may provevaluable, any attempt to construct a single, dialogic public spheregrounded in a fixed identity would not reflect the differently locatedsubjects at issue” (Stychin, 2001:295).87

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