Louisiana State University (LSU)'s Public Policy Research Lab recently found that the overwhelming majority of people in the state believe that transgender and gay communities deserve equal protection under the law. The survey was commissioned, written, and sponsored by the groups Capital City Alliance, Equality Louisiana, and Louisiana Progress.
The poll results are as follows:
- 89% of participants said schools should protect gay and transgender students from bullying and harassment
- 93.7% of participants said people should not be evicted or denied housing because they are gay or transgender
- 89.3% of participants said employers other than churches or religious organizations should not be able to fire employees because they are gay or transgender
The survey included nearly 1,300 respondents who were randomly chosen to answer via phone interviews, and the results were meant to accurately represent the Louisiana's demographic distribution by race, age, education, and gender.
These abundant rates of support were consistently high among respondents who were Republicans and Democrats, men and women, millenials and baby boomers, and across races, education levels, income brackets, and employment status, and more.
These polling numbers came out at the same time that Duck Dynasty's Phil Robertson—a longtime resident of Louisiana--came under fire for his racist and anti-gay comments. He has since been placed on hiatus from the show. You can read the full quote here.
Despite Robertson attempting to pass off his anti-LGBT sentiments as objective and theologically-rooted, it seems that the people of Louisiana would beg to differ.
“Based on poll numbers taken as recently as late November from a highly respected educational institution, it seems that the Robertsons do not represent the views of the vast majority of their neighbors. Equality is a mainstream value in Louisiana." Matthew Patterson, Research and Policy Coordinator for Equality Louisiana told GLAAD.
Robertson's comments are problematic, not simply because they are baseless and false, but because they contribute to a political and social environment that encourages inaccess to vital resources and a lack of protection in what should be safe and productive spaces. GLAAD is thrilled by LSU's findings that the majority of Robertson's neighbors, just like the majority of Americans at large, know that equality needs to become a pervasive reality in all people's lives.
You can view a summary, including a demographical breakdown of survey participants, on Equality Louisiana's website.