A Record 55% of Americans Now Support Same-Sex Marriage

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Some 55 percent of Americans now say they support same-sex marriage, the highest number since Gallup polling on the question began in the 1990s, according to a new Gallup poll.

The finding comes on the heels of federal judges who this week struck down bans on same-sex marriage in Pennsylvania and Oregon.

Support has been climbing forgay marriages, growing from 40 percent to 53 percent between 2009 and 2011-2012, with the most recent numbers before showing 54 percent support in 2012. In 1996, the first time Gallup completed a same-sex-marriage survey, 68 percent were opposed. Then, in 2004, when Massachusetts became the first state to legalize same-sex marriage (10 years ago this month), support reached 42 percent.

Currently, same-sex marriage is legal in 17 U.S. states and the District of Columbia, though several states are in the midst of legal battles, appealing judges’ rulings overturning bans on same-sex marriage, according to Gallup.

In the South, where just 48 percent of Americans said gay marriage should be legal, all states have constitutional bans on such marriages; those bans are being challenged in Arkansas and Kentucky, according to Gallup. States in the West show the highest support (67 percent) for same-sex marriage in the United States.

Written By: Jeanna Bryner
continue to source article at livescience.com

28 COMMENTS

  1. Yes it is good to see support for same sex marriages on the increase in America, but the most important two things are that no state has constitutional bans and even more importantly that no couples are abused for their relationship.

  2. did the question asked change with each of these polls or vary slightly. i tend to avoid statistics they can be manipulated so easy especially on such a politically sensitive subject as homosexuality.

    the problem is this topic is now a tool to destroy, politicians or individuals can be devastated. its hard for someone to stand up in are society and say they disagree with homosexuality they are instantly called bigots.

    considering peoples obsession with fame and public adulation any comment even in polls is data that can be used against people and so can belie there true thoughts.

    i don’t think there has been a truly massive psychological shift in society towards accepting homosexuality more as there has been a wider understanding of the consequences of being perceived to be against it.

    • In reply to #2 by avail:

      did the question asked change with each of these polls or vary slightly. i tend to avoid statistics they can be manipulated so easy especially on such a politically sensitive subject as homosexuality.

      the problem is this topic is now a tool to destroy, politicians or individuals can be devastated….

      What does it mean to be against homosexuality? I can understand not wanting to have gay sex but if you don’t like it don’t do it, seems pretty simple to me. But why would you care what two other consenting adults do in private?

      • In reply to #3 by Red Dog:

        What does it mean to be against homosexuality? I can understand not wanting to have gay sex but if you don’t like it don’t do it, seems pretty simple to me. But why would you care what two other consenting adults do in private?

        Oh come on now. You know what avail #2 means….”be disapproving of” or “judge harshly someone with this orientation”. It shouldn’t matter to anyone other than the individual involved, but it has mattered in many cultural settings. It’s not acceptable in our current atmosphere of tolerance and acceptance, but we don’t have to go back too far to remember the stigma.

    • In reply to #2 by avail:
      Over the course of my lifetime I’ve seen a big shift here in the States. When I was in high school in the late seventies, I knew no one who was an out gay. Years later, at a reunion I learned of a few guys from our graduating class who had died from AIDS. In those days it wasn’t known what was killing those guys and there was no treatment. They died very quickly and quietly. So sad.

      I’m a middle generation person in my family and I’m between elderly parents who fit your description. They don’t want to see or acknowledge anything about gays or their scene. They are disgusted by it. I have watched the whole AIDS and gay rights history play out to this point for my whole adult life, and my kids and young family members are shocked when they witness any gay bashing at all. It’s true that the older generation thinks twice about making homophobic comments because they don’t want to be seen as cruel fascists by their own grandchildren.

  3. In reply to #3 by Red Dog:

    But why would you care what two other consenting adults do in private?

    Apparently, fundamentalists of certain stripes believe that everyone is straight and that there are some people who are perverted and evil like to do dirty sexual deeds even though the holy books have specifically warned them not to. They don’t feel bad when these “sickos” get beat up, killed, terminally ill and die. Try to tell them that their desires are not chosen but that they’re born that way and they flat out deny it.
    I think Hitch once said something to the effect of- It would be fine if religious people would just go about their business and keep their religion to themselves…but you know, they never can do that, can they… When it comes to sexual behavior, they feel it is their DUTY to take charge of everyone’s bedroom activities. Puritanical misery is what they perpetrate on their fellow humans.

    • In reply to #6 by LaurieB:

      In reply to #3 by Red Dog:

      But why would you care what two other consenting adults do in private?

      Apparently, fundamentalists of certain stripes believe that everyone is straight and that there are some people who are perverted and evil like to do dirty sexual deeds even though the holy books have…

      I don’t think it really has that much to do with religion. Just as with racial bigotry (e.g., the cross burning KKK) religion is used to justify it but it comes down to fear and hatred. Also, there is empirical evidence that homophobia is correlated with unacknowledged same sex attraction. The people who express the strongest hatred of gay men also show strong arousal to gay porn images though they verbally say such images disgust and do not arouse them.

      • In reply to #8 by Red Dog:

        I don’t think it really has that much to do with religion.

        Come on, this is bunk. It explicitly says in their sacred text that homosexuality is an abomination. All beliefs can be distilled into their raw emotions in which case religion will always get a pass. Tradition, the sacred, fear are all wound up tight in a single world view. Without the religious component their argument falls apart, there’s nothing left. Sure there will still be some secular bigots, but the entire movement will lose its teeth.

        I would tend to take people at their word about their motivations and the reasoning behind them. It seems liberals only do otherwise when it comes to religion/culture and to blame the West for for every ill in the world.

        • In reply to #21 by Skeptic:

          In reply to #8 by Red Dog:

          I don’t think it really has that much to do with religion.

          Come on, this is bunk. It explicitly says in their sacred text that homosexuality is an abomination. All beliefs can be distilled into

          It’s not nearly that simple. There are very few passages that refer to homosexuality. And most of them are very open to interpretation, e.g., what is being condemned is rape or sex outside of marriage, etc. in fact what you are doing is adopting the framing of the most fundamentalist Christians. There are almost as many passages prohibiting shellfish as there are gayness but you don’t see signs that God hates lobsters. There are also more passages in the new testament about not judging people than about gayness. And Jesus himself never condemns gayness but he does condemn those who judge.

          Like a lot of religious texts people mostly interpret according to their other deeply held beliefs and use it to rationalize what they would do anyway, not as an actual guide to decisions.

  4. Can I pose a question???

    The 55% that currently approve, were they always there and silent or has there been an actual paradigm change?

    BTW, I truly hope that the 55% swells and swells. I am firmly in the equality for all camp. I just wonder if it is cultural zeitgeist or cultural change. And, if you apply this same scrutinization to the issue of atheists being currently shit on, is it upon us to move towrd changing others or simply making it OK for them to speak openly?

    • In reply to #9 by crookedshoes:

      .The 55% that currently approve, were they always there and silent or has there been an actual paradigm change?

      In the dim, very distant past, my concern was for those wrongly accused not for those rightly accused. Over the years I’ve had a complete reversal. I’m probably representative of my age group so I’d say a paradigm shift.

      • In reply to #12 by Nitya:

        In reply to #11 by Sean_W:

        I’m surprised it’s not higher.

        Me too. I’ve heard of a 75% approval rate

        Its certainly hitting those numbers in the 18 to 29 demographic.

        The graph here shows the steady change in the net view of all, the start of the change commencing in 2005, the rate remaining steady until today with a single glitch in 2013.

        It seems mostly an age related thing driven by what appears normal. I would suggest that this would put the start date of the change of “what would appear normal” at about 1995 to 2000. I propose that 13 year olds will start to form their opinions on these matters and then get to express them from age 18 in these surveys.

        I, therefore, propose shows like Ellen then Will and Grace had a profound impact on normalising gay people, in the eyes of young teens, in the mid-late nineties, and certainly contributed to the change.

        • In reply to #13 by phil rimmer:

          In reply to #12 by Nitya:

          In reply to #11 by Sean_W:

          I’m surprised it’s not higher.

          Me too. I’ve heard of a 75% approval rate

          Its certainly hitting those numbers in the 18 to 29 demographic.

          From my observations most people in that age bracket would be shamed if they appeared to hold homophobic or racist views. I suppose there will always be a small group that don’t abide by such niceties.

          I think people are becoming nicer than they were in the past!

          • In reply to #14 by Nitya:

            In reply to #13 by phil rimmer:

            I think people are becoming nicer than they were in the past!

            Me too.

            Like most kids, my kids have e-friends from around the world. The tyranny of geography and the tales of old folk are broken.

        • In reply to #13 by phil rimmer:

          mid to late ’90′s

          Princess Diana, too.


          Duck Dynasty dude keeps quacking about homosexuality; he receives plenty of flak, and wouldn’t surprise me if merchandise sales are stagnant. Wal-mart, a supplier DD stuff, reported a fifth straight quarterly earnings loss – replacing with something else might help.

          • In reply to #16 by bluebird:

            In reply to #13 by phil rimmer:

            mid to late ’90′s

            Princess Diana, too.

            Duck Dynasty dude keeps quacking about homosexuality; he receives plenty of flak, and wouldn’t surprise me if merchandise sales are stagnant. Wal-mart, a supplier DD stuff, reported a fifth straight quarterly earnings loss…

            It would surprise me. The whole DD thing IMO is an example of how the left wastes times on petty issues and actually has a perverse love-hate relation with right wing aHoles. For people like DD and Rush Limbaugh the negative publicity is in many ways something they crave. It may hurt them in a few markets but their core audience loves it and the old adage about show business is “there is no such thing as bad publicity” IMO the best way to treat people like DD is just ignore them. They are like adolescents who really just act out to get attention, except in their case the attention can result in $$.

          • In reply to #17 by Red Dog:

            The whole DD thing IMO is an example of how the left wastes times on petty issues and actually has a perverse love-hate relation with right wing aHoles.

            Bill Maher had a good bit about this in his last show.

        • In reply to #13 by phil rimmer:

          In reply to #12 by Nitya:

          In reply to #11 by Sean_W:

          I’m surprised it’s not higher.

          Me too. I’ve heard of a 75% approval rate

          Its certainly hitting those numbers in the 18 to 29 demographic.

          The graph here shows the steady change in the net view of all, the start of the change commencing in 20…

          I can’t help but wonder if there would be a huge difference between the North and the South, or between the Eastern Seaboard and, say, the Midwest.

  5. Study the New Testament and you will discover that God hates gays. At several points in the gospels, Jesus can be read to endorse the entirety of Old Testament law (Matthew 5:18-19). Old Testament law demands the death penalty for homosexuality. St Paul says men who practice homosexuality will not inherit the Kingdom of God (1 Corinthians 6:9). St Paul demands the death penalty for homosexuals (Romans 1:26-32). According to the Book of Revelation, on the Day of Judgement all gays will be thrown into the Lake of Fire.

  6. Here is a fifty year old document of a British Religious organisation giving its considered opinion on matters sexual. It may be seen as too advanced in places by some here. I’m a little nervous myself of some of the pronouncements. But given a little more evidence to tighten a few things up, I can say its heart is in exactly the right place.

    The US branch of the organisation is entirely more equivocal.

    The US is right of centre on many issues compared to Europe. This seems to be as much a definer of its religiosity as it is a result of it.

  7. Within hours of 9/11, Pat Robertson, America’s most famous televangelist and a former presidential candidate, had announced that the deaths of 3,000 innocent men, women, and children was God’s judgement on a society that tolerated homosexuals and lesbians. Robertson is no straw man, he is very influential, and a multitude of Evangelical Christians agree with him. Robertson does not cherry-pick the Bible, he believes the Bible is inerrant.

  8. The legal battles taking place in recent years winning civil rights for homosexuals have been one of the most important influences bolstering the atheist POV against fundamentalist religions. The general population’s increasing acceptance of homosexual rights can’t help but reduce the influence of traditional religious views which have become counterproductive.

    IMHO, a major reason for this being the era during which homosexuality has become widely accepted is that, only since WWII has it become unmistakably apparent that non-procreative sex-for-pleasure is helpful, not harmful toward achieving equilibrium in this world of increasingly limited resources.

    A major reason for religious bigotry toward homosexuality stems from the fact that human existence was precarious from the debut of the ‘fifth ape’ until perhaps a hundred years ago, when two world wars, despite their incredible devastation, didn’t significantly reduce the number of humans on the planet.

    Human existence may still be precarious, but not because there are too few.

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