Lesbophobia is a concept denoting various forms of negativity towards lesbian women as couples, individuals, or a social group in general. Based on the categories of gender expression, sex, lesbian identity, and sexual orientation, these negative attitudes include prejudice, abuse, discrimination, and feelings ranging from hate to disdain. Lesbophobia, thus, is sexism against women that intertwines with homophobia and vice versa.
Lesbians are Dangerous
A typical lesbophobic belief is that heterosexual interactions are normal and natural, while lesbian ones are abnormal, unnatural, and dangerous. Similarly to homophobia, lesbophobia assumes heterosexuality is normal, dominant, and presumed, and that other sexual or relationship types are neither normal nor natural.
One very common lesbophobic belief and stereotype is that female athletes are usually or always gay. Lesbians have to deal with lesbophobic attitudes not only from straight people but also from bisexual people and gay men. A typical lesbophobic attitude in gay men is the conviction that lesbian issues are subordinate and not as important as gay men’s rights.
Choice and Respect
Some lesbians feel strongly about the denigration of the concept of individual choice and respect, an artificial societal construct that connects gay rights to the concept of innateness. It is erroneously assumed that women are more “flexible” sexually than men, leaving lesbian rights more vulnerable to attack. Other womencite statistics as proof for correlations between attitudes.For instance, some exclude people from social groups with a view on one matter that is different from their own.
Scholars argue efforts toward sexual orientation change aimed at females are much worse than those at men because they are tantamount to rape. Others suggest that the notion of women’s sexual fluidity is nothing more than wishful thinking on the part of men who want to be intimate with gay women and deserves criticism for its lack of objectivity.
Violence against Lesbians
In its worst forms, lesbophobiarears its ugly head through violent crimes, such as murder and “corrective” rape. In 2007, South AfricanSizakeleSigasaand her partner were raped, tortured, and killed in an attack driven by lesbophobia according to South African gay rights organizations. In the same year and country, lesbian woman SimangeleNhlapo and 16-year-old MadoeMafubedu were raped and killed. Nhlapo’s two-year-old daughter was killed too.