“Massive study finds only 3.4% of American adults identify as LGBT”
Andrew Malcolm, IBD:
A massive new survey published this morning reveals that only 3.4% of American adults publicly identify themselves as lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender, with the highest percentage coming among the younger, less-educated non-whites.
The new Gallup Poll of more than 121,000 adults, the largest of its kind on record, wass conducted during the past four months. It finds the percentage of self-reported LGBT Americans to be much smaller than a general impression derived from their presence in popular culture and their perceived influence in liberal American politics.
The special report found 3.4% of adult Americans publicly reporting themselves as personally identifying with those categories, 92.2% saying they do not and 4.4% refusing to say or claiming not to know.
Given the stigma often attached by some to those categories, some unknown portion of the Didn’t Say’s and No’s presumably are choosing to remain in the closet, holding down the LGBT number somewhat.
“This initial analysis,” Gallup reports, “reveals new insights into the composition of the LGBT community in the U.S. In particular, the findings challenge both media and cultural stereotypes to reveal that the LGBT population is in a number of ways not that different from the broader U.S. population.”
Gallup also found the social characteristics of those self-reporting themselves as LGBT is dramatically different from their portrayal in the media as largely white, well-educated and well-to-do.
The largest percentage (4.6%) came among blacks, followed by Asians (4.3%), Hispanics (4%) and non-Hispanic whites (3.2%).
Results showed that a larger percentage of women, especially younger women, reported themselves as LGBT (3.6%) compared to men (3.3%).
And Gallup reports those publicly asserting to be LGBT tend to be younger, less-educated and less wealthy than the rest of the population.
Does this mean “Will & Grace” lied to me? — and that “The New Normal,” you know, isn’t?
Frankly, I don’t much care about the numbers, save that I get tired of the outsized political influence exerted by the politicized portion of the LGBT community, be they in media, involved in civic activism, or in the academy.
Mostly I’d just like to watch TV shows that don’t feel the need to feature at least one gay or lesbian character. Or at least, will do so without resorting to a contemporary rewriting of the noble savage myth, where the homosexual character, for all his or her foibles, is at heart a truly kind and wonderful human being.
A gay villain. Who wasn’t driven to his or her villainy by the hurtful taunts of redneck homophobes — but rather engaged in villainy because he or she is just an evil asshole. Show me that, decoupled from the inevitable, organized public outcry suggesting such was an attempt to vilify the LGBT community, and the perfunctory apology by the network and disavowal of any such intent by the contrite writer/producer.
Then I’ll know we’ve reached a state of equality — not a state of special pleading that poses as a call for equality.