The Pulse of Equality: A Snapshot of U.S. Perspectives on LGBT People and Policies

GLAAD released a new survey conducted by Harris Interactive in the wake of the passage of and protests against California's Proposition 8. The survey reveals that majorities of Americans favor a broad range of policies and legal protections for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) people.

Here are the survey's key findings:

  • Three-quarters of U.S. adults (75%) favor either marriage or domestic partnerships/civil unions for gay and lesbian couples.  Only about two in 10 (22%) say gay and lesbian couples should have no legal recognition. (Gay and lesbian couples are able to marry in two states, and comprehensive civil union or domestic partnership laws exist in only five others and the District of Columbia.)
  • U.S. adults are now about evenly divided on whether they support allowing gay and lesbian couples to legally marry (47% favor to 49% oppose).
  • Almost two-thirds (64%) of U.S. adults favor allowing openly gay military personnel to serve in the armed forces. (The current "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" law bans military service by openly gay personnel.)
  • About six in 10 (63%) U.S. adults favor expanding hate crime laws to cover gay and transgender people. (Hate crimes laws cover gay and transgender people in 11 states and the District of Columbia, and an additional - 20 states' laws cover sexual orientation but not gender identity.)
  • A slight majority of U.S. adults (51%) favor protecting gay and transgender people under existing laws that prohibit discrimination in employment, housing, and public accommodations. (Existing non-discrimination laws cover gay and transgender people in only 12 states and the District of Columbia, and eight other states' laws cover sexual orientation but not gender identity.)
  • Nearly seven out of 10 U.S. adults (69%) oppose laws that would ban qualified gay and lesbian couples from adopting children. (In several states, gay and lesbian couples are banned from adopting.)

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Skewed Perception: Religious Voices on President Obama and Marriage Equality

In a historic move, on May 9, President Barack Obama announced his support for full marriage equality for gay and lesbian couples. In an interview with Good Morning America’s Robin Roberts, President Obama stated that his decision to publically support marriage equality is rooted in his faith. In the days immediately following President Barack Obama’s statement in support of marriage equality for gay and lesbian couples, news media outlets scrambled to address the president’s use of religious language in explaining how his “evolution” concluded with him choosing to support marriage equality. What we found was stark, but unsurprising.

Black and Latino Faith Leaders Speak Out in Support of Marriage for Gay Couples and President Obama

With President Barack Obama’s recent announcement of support for same-sex marriage, GLAAD today is urging both local and national media to highlight the voices of supportive African-American and Latino clergy who feel that all loving couples should be able to marry, regardless of sexual orientation. These beliefs are not tied to party affiliation, and speak to the evolution of people of faith, including clergy, on this issue. 

Talking About Marriage for Same Sex Couples

The Talking About series was co-authored by the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation (GLAAD) and the Movement Advancement Project (MAP), in partnership with a board of contributing editors from the Human Rights Campaign, Lake Research Partners, PFLAG's Straight for Equality project, Arizona Together, researcher Margaret Conway, and Servicemembers Legal Defense Network (SLDN, on the Don't Ask, Don't Tell section).

Missing Voices: A study of religious voices in mainstream media reports about LGBT equality

A three-year study of mainstream news coverage about the intersection of religion and issues affecting the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) community1 showed that media outlets overwhelmingly quoted or interviewed sources from Evangelical Christian organizations to speak about LGBT lives, and the messages from those sources were significantly more negative than positive, resulting in a 'religion versus gay' framing.

Guía para una Cobertura Objetiva de Personas y Temas Transgénero

GLAAD le insta a todos los medios de comunicación a prestar mucha atención al lenguaje que se emplea a la hora de cubrir cualquier noticia (sobre todo las historias de crímenes) que tenga que ver con la comunidad lésbica, gay, bisexual y transgénero (LGBT).

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