In a modern-day context this may seem like a false statement, however it is quite true. The state oppresses and restrains us every day, keeping us back from our full potential through its laws and security apparatus that enforce the whims of the state. Yet, this is not only done on a physical and economic level, but is also done based on one’s sexuality and gender identity. Yet, to get a fuller understanding of how the state oppresses us based on sexuality or gender identity, it is first necessary to ask the question: What is the state?
The state can be defined in many ways; however there are several definitions that are accepted such as Max Weber’s definition that the state is “a human community that successfully claims the monopoly of the legitimate use of physical force within a given territory.” It can also be defined in a geographical sense using borders. However, at its heart, the state is made up of people.