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Temple
A building dedicated to religious ceremonies or worship.Any structure devoted to the worship of a god or gods, or other objects of religious importance can be considered a temple, and therefore sacred. For Jews, the word that describes the temple in which a congregation meets for religious observance and instruction is synagogue. Sikhs, Hindus and Buddhists are among the many religious groups who hold religious meetings in a temple. Destruction, vandalism or other damage done to a temple is a common form of anti-Semitic crime which can have a devastating effect on the Jewish and gentile (non-Jewish) community.Source: "Temple". The American Heritage Dictionary, Third Edition. 1994.
Thai
A racial category that reflects individuals who identify as originating in Thailand or Siam.See: AsianSource: Census.gov
Thrill-Seeking Offenders
A person who commits a hate crime out of a need to earn bragging rights, achieve a psychological thrill or find social/peer acceptance. This is the most common archetype of bias crime perpetrators. A typical offense occurs on the spur of the moment and is often accompanied by the use of drugs and alcohol.Source: Levin, Jack and McDevitt, Jack. Hate Crimes: The Rising Tide of Bigotry and Bloodshed. New York. Plenum. 1993.
Token Minority
In order to explain the term "token minority," one must first have an understanding of "affirmative action." Affirmative action is: any measure, beyond the simple termination of a discriminatory practice, which permits the consideration of race, national origin, gender or disability, along with other criteria, and which is adopted to provide opportunities to a class of qualified individuals who have either historically or have actually been denied those opportunities, and to prevent the recurrence of discrimination in the future.Moving from that definition of affirmative action, some individuals have a skewed opinion of gays and lesbians, women, racial, ethnic or religious minorities, disabled individuals or the elderly in the work, education, social and political-economic spheres. The implication is that those people are not qualified to have their positions, titles etc. and have received preferential treatment because of their minority status in order to "fill quotas". They are then deemed, "token minorities" by these bigoted, racist, homophobic, ethnocentric and otherwise biased individuals.As with any business practice, in some cases, Affirmative Action is not properly implemented. However, it is incorrect to assume that any minority has his or her position in life solely because of that characteristic and not on their merit or human/civil right without proof of his or her inability.See: Protected class
Tolerance
The capacity for or the practice of recognizing and respecting the beliefs or practices of others.For some, the connotation of this word is "putting up with" difference, rather than accepting, welcoming and embracing that which is different. Tolerance can be a stepping stone towards celebrating difference. For individuals who hold strong deeply-rooted biases and prejudices, tolerance of people who are different is a great achievement.Religious Tolerance would then be seen as: When a person values the rights of others to have different beliefs and to engage in novel religious practices even while she/he personally believes that those beliefs and practices are invalid.See: MulticulturalismSources: ReligiousTolerance.org -&- Dictionary.com
Transgender
An individual who lives full or part time as a member of the gender opposite that which they were born. It is worthy of note that it is only respectful to refer to transgenderists as the gender to which they personally identify. The proper use of pronouns, "he" or "she" and the categorization (male and female, if necessary) should conform to his or her chosen identity. As is the case with homosexual sexual orientation, transgenderists believe that their gender identity is not a choice but a trait that they are born with.Transgender is now used as an umbrella term for those who don't fit society's gender roles, and includes transexuals, cross-dressers, transgenderists and others.
Transvestite
An individual who desires to live full time as a member of the opposite gender, and who may seek hormone therapy, cosmetic surgery or genital surgery in order to more closely approximate the appearance of the gender in which they choose to live.It is not common to meet many transvestites as the processes are extremely difficult and very expensive. There is currently a debate as to whether or not insurance companies should pay for the costs associated with these procedures.Source: Long Island Transsexual Experience
Two-spirited
With a gender that is neither exclusively male or female but instead contains both spirits, "two-spirited" people have existed in many different cultures, including Native American and Aboriginal. And though many understand them as being more or less lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgendered people, two-spirited individuals have a place all their own in indigenous societies and traditions.Once valued as assets to their home communities, many two-spirits ended up becoming outcasts due to homophobia, thanks to decades of confrontation between Aboriginal and European religions. Today, two-spirited gatherings occur regularly across North America, part of the effort to renew the bond between two-spirits and their nations.Two-spirit people were (mostly men) who lived their lives as the other gender. They were most of the time healers and medicine men, and villages looked at them with respect. In more recent anthropological writings, two spirit roles are seen as manifestations of construction of gender in Native American cultures that differ from western ways of defining and construction of gender. These roles for individuals that one way or another are reversing or blending genders in Native American cultures are as diverse as the cultures themselves.Source: McGill University