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Reflective Reading Logs, Essay Example

Pages: 3

Words: 919

Essay

Alford, B., & Lee, S. J. (2016). Toward complete inclusion: Lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender military service members after the repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell. Social work, 61(3), 257-265.

The main purpose of Alford & Lee (2016) is to show that policy-level interventions are vital to enhancing inclusion in mental health services within the context of the military. They hold that there has been a significant shift towards greater inclusion of individuals from the lesbian, gay, and bisexual communities. However, despite the significant progress recorded in terms of inclusion, the initiatives were undertaken so far, such as the repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell (DADT), fail to address the underlying institutional and cultural inequities that prove a hindrance to complete inclusion of LGB individuals, especially those who subscribe to a transgender sexual identity. They find that these inequities have significant negative effects on individuals from the LGB community, which often limits the scope and quality of mental health services they receive. They conclude by recommending that culturally competent social work practices be employed within the military. They propose that policy-level responses be instituted to help integrate LGB inclusion within military service.

Most of the ideas and proposals made by the researchers were evidence-based. However, while the authors propose affirmative action as an ideal and primary strategy in ensuring inclusion, they fail to consider the negative effects of such an approach. Affirmative action promotes reverse discrimination, reinforces stereotypes, and changes the standards for accountability. As such, their proposal on affirmative action has to be tempered with other strategies to ensure the effectiveness of interventions. This article is valuable to my profession as a social worker as it shows the potential strategies that can be employed at the institution level to ensure LGB individuals receive the requisite mental health services. It proposes models that can be considered to develop more robust strategies by social workers in different contexts.

Baker, A. C., Brown, L. M., & Ragonese, M. (2015). Confronting Barriers to Critical Discussions about Sexualization with Adolescent Girls. Social Work, 61(1), 79-81.

Baker, Brown, & Ragonese (2015) looks at the potential barriers to discourse about sexualization with adolescent girls and strategies that can be used to confront these barriers. They argue that the sexualization of women and girls in the media is associated with symptoms of depression and eating disorders. They hold that sexualization is not only widespread in society but it is also a significant form of discrimination that has to be addressed by social workers. Using a media literacy and activism curriculum, the authors find that; 1) pornography firewalls hamper access to vital material online; 2) low-income settings have limited access to resources despite the eroding digital divide between high-income and low-income populations; 3) despite the requests for intervention by teachers, social workers found it difficult to create educator buy-in.

All arguments posited by the authors of this article were evidence-based, as they relied on past research and their research to develop and support arguments. They provided clarity in the terms and concepts that they employ, allowing the reader a relatively easy time understanding the content. I believe that the findings of this research article are vital to the development and improvement of the social work profession. It highlights a pervasive issue in society that is often ignored because of historical patriarchal societal structures. I believe it provides foundational guidelines on how to address the issue of the sexualization of girls at the institutional level.

Vinjamuri, M. (2015). “It’s So Important to Talk and Talk”: How Gay Adoptive Fathers Respond to Their Children’s Encounters with Heteronormativity. Fathering: A Journal of Theory, Research & Practice about Men as Fathers, 13(3).

Vinjamuri (2015) explores the value and importance of communication between gay adoptive father and their children who may encounter heteronormativity. Even though gay adoptive fathers have children who are heterosexual, they face challenges in explaining to their children such encounters. Using a phenomenological study that employed interviews of 20 families, the authors delve into the issues of children in families comprising gay adoptive fathers deal with the issues of being adopted, being in a family setting without a mother, being in a family that comprises gay fathers. They find that fathers responding to these challenges with empathy helps to develop better and stronger connections between the child and parents. It also enhances the gay adoptive fathers’ feelings of being parents.

This research study provides valuable insight into a population section that is often ignored and overlooked, i.e., families comprising gay parents and their children. It shed light on the complexities of such relationships with regards to handling heterosexual encounters, which are significantly different from the affection they see between their parents. While this research provides valuable insight into the complexities of the relationships between gay fathers and their children, a better understanding of the dynamics of such settings would be better developed by considering families that comprise lesbian mothers. I believe that this source provides useful foundational material to help social workers handle cases involving families that comprise gay parents and children.

References

Alford, B., & Lee, S. J. (2016). Toward complete inclusion: Lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender military service members after repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell. Social work, 61(3), 257-265.

Baker, A. C., Brown, L. M., & Ragonese, M. (2015). Confronting Barriers to Critical Discussions about Sexualization with Adolescent Girls. Social Work, 61(1), 79-81.

Vinjamuri, M. (2015). “It’s So Important to Talk and Talk”: How Gay Adoptive Fathers Respond to Their Children’s Encounters with Heteronormativity. Fathering: A Journal of Theory, Research & Practice about Men as Fathers, 13(3).

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