• August 31, 2015

Data Points: Support for Legal Same-Sex Marriage


1. greeneyeshade - March 17, 2010 at 10:49 am

Seems to me to be a reflection of the strongly pro-gay popular culture, which drives this generation more than it has any previous generation.

2. skocpol - March 17, 2010 at 01:45 pm

Popular culture "throws up" some rather unappealing images of all types of people, as well as glorifications, generation after generation. Today's college freshmen have had a lot of screen time, full of special effects and grandiose violence much more extensive than either condemnation or praise for persons who love other persons of the same gender.

We previous generations had few opportunities to personally know ordinary people who revealed to us that they loved persons of the same gender. We too often were "exposed" only to "exhibitionists who flaunt sexual contact with their own kind". Extremism seemed the only way to survive repression, at least at the level of public awareness, and it in turn reinforced the incidence of repression. Way too many individuals (for example virulently anti-gay hypocrites who were tortured by their own secret longings) have lead twisted lives as a result.

The fact is that marriage is not about flagrant sex. It is about public commitment to a whole person, and privately includes a whole set of economic, psychological, mutually supportive ties. The incidence of persons attracted to persons of the same gender has not changed. What has changed is that quietly behind the scenes young people (and older people too) are realizing that they actually know non-flagrant people who are inclined to a different set of attachments. The awareness spreads through friendship networks, and most people continue to get along with each other. Thus the awareness grows that personal connections in the form of marriage is considered appropriate for some heterosexual couples, and for some homosexual couples. The total fears and hatreds for anyone who is different will never die off completely, but this young generation is closer to getting it right than most old folks.

3. cplantin - March 17, 2010 at 07:27 pm

greeneyeshade: the culture isn't necessarily strongly "pro-gay" but it is thankfully increasingly "pro-equality" for people, including gays. Nice try at the spin, though.

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