Saluting the Rainbow Flag
Gay acceptance in America is trending up
When President Obama said in a speech last night that the U.S. has seen a "constant progression toward including more and more people in the American dream," his opponents were quick to charge him with pandering to the evening's audience. His campaign stop at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel ballroom was, after all, sponsored by deep-pocketed gay and lesbian donors.
But the results of a CNN poll released just yesterday bear him out: American acceptance of gay lifestyle is on the rise.
Of course, not everyone thinks the country's LGBT contingent is hands-down fabulous. But attitudes are clearly becoming more inclusive. For the first time ever, the poll suggests, a majority of Americans say they have a close friend or family member who is gay. Just 49% said so, or admitted it, two years ago; but in yesterday's poll, 60% replied in the affirmative. The survey also indicated a growing acceptance of same-sex marriage.
Have a look at the complete poll results, which break down results by race, education level, political affiliation, and other factors. To an extent, we're divided along predictable lines: 70% of Dems say same-sex marriages should be recognized by the law as valid, while 72% of Republicans surveyed were opposed. There's an age divide as well, with nearly two thirds under age 50 favoring legal same-sex marriage and almost as many over age 50 opposed. It's striking how gay issues are so polarizing even as acceptance broadens. But don't prejudge your conservative elderly neighbor with the framed picture of Reagan on his mantel. Then you'd be the one guilty of bias. There's still room in those stats for him to be enjoying Will & Grace re-runs behind the shades.
The poll doesn't say why, who, how, or what has changed American attitudes. Could we be getting smarter? Well, let's not jump the gun. But there has been a slow and steady cultural push against ignorance in recent years. Minds aren't easily changed by loud opposition and foot-stomping marches, though soap-box advocates play an important part in swinging the pendulum from right to left. Attitudes settle more comfortably in the middle when great role models -- not good models of gay life, necessarily, but gay people who model a good life -- emerge in America's boardrooms, in houses of worship, on our TV screens, and in our neighborhoods.
America may not yet have made a wholesale change in attitude toward the gay community. But we're evolving.
Photo: Lisa Stokes/Flickr/Getty Images
Normal is a subjective term. Nothing is normal. We all should try to do the best with the cards we are dealt...
The greatest of all gifts has been that this country educates everyone. Without this we are no better off than the oppressive nations that do not allow all of the people in their country to be educated.
Then we throw it all away by letting prejudices guide us...
Man is stupid, hypocritical, small minded, foolish, etc.
and that's just the republicants...lmao
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