May 27, 2011

Gallup poll: Democrats estimate that 28% of Americans are gay.

Republicans are much closer to reality, at 20.2%, but still far off. (The actual percentage is more like 3.5.)

What accounts for this discrepancy? Perhaps Democrats are more likely to live in places where there are larger concentrations of openly gay people. Perhaps those with liberal views are more likely to hear the news that people they know are gay. Maybe Dems are dumber. The poll does also show that less educated people have the highest estimate. Or maybe it's that women tend to be Democrats and women estimate high (29.7% to men's 19.4%). Why would women estimate high? It might be that they are more likely to key into talk about private lives, and thus hear more about various people being gay, and then they extrapolate a ridiculous number. Younger people estimate high too, and younger people tend to be more liberal.

Whatever. Why are people so ill-informed? It's embarrassing. Would people be more likely to support equal rights for gay people if they knew how small the number is? But of course, we don't really know exactly what the number is. We're all only estimating.

Are you more likely to support gay rights if you think there are very few gay people?
Yes, because then they're more of a minority and more subject to discrimination.
Yes, because then giving them rights won't have much effect.
No, because it's worse if a larger number of persons are denied equality.
No, because rights are what they are regardless of how many people are being denied those rights.
  
pollcode.com free polls

101 comments:

Bob Ellison said...

Gayness is one of the most vapidly estimated figures around. 3.5% is probably a very good guess, but try getting that past almost any political group.

Freeman Hunt said...

So people really believe that almost 1 in 3 people that they went to school with turned out to be gay?

That's... not very smart.

YoungHegelian said...

Maybe people are stupid about homosexuality because both the left and the right have good reasons to keep the discussion as fact-free as possible.

Facts just tend to get in the way of a good story.

Titus said...

I think part of it is where these people live.

Did it say where these polls were from.

I have lived in large cities my entire life and I have gone out with many straight women and men and they always said something like, "of course he is gay everyone is gay". And when you walk around in these cities it is gay everywhere.

What is the percentage of gays in places like Boston or NYC or San Francisco? I would say closer to 15%.
You can't swing a cat without hitting a fag in those cities and many of the "straight guys" seem willing to crossover for the night. I could literally walk outside my fabulous loft in Cambridge and within 5 minutes was getting my hog sucked in some out of the way parking lot.

Madison, on the other hand, has like no gays. I have been here which seems like an eternity (9 months) and I have seen like two gays. One that works at Willy Street and is hideous and calls everyone Mary and a fatty trying to get into an Anderson Cooper stretch tshirt at Banana Republic....gulp....at West Towne-which was just so absolutely horrible.

Seven Machos said...

What rights, exactly, are gay people denied?

Michelle Dulak Thomson said...

That's .... incredible. I've never heard of a gay advocacy group estimating that more than 10% of American men were gay; everyone seemed to agree that the percentage of (exclusively) lesbian women was smaller than that; and most conceded that the 10% was wildly overinflated.

Those are the top numbers given out by advocates. [The bottom numbers given out by, shall we say, anti-advocates are more like 2%.] So where is this bipartisan BS coming from? I suppose from the same place as the "20% [or whatever] of the Federal budget goes to foreign aid" bit.

wv: unmesses. I wish!

Titus said...

I am so glad I did not sell my fabulous loft in Cambridge and rented it out for the year.

It will be ready for my return.

Did I mention it is on the Penthouse and has a really cute Juliet Balcony that overlooks Harvard Square?

My checks have my address which of course says Penthouse and when you push the elevator to my unit is says "PH". I love saying to fellow elevator travelers, PH please, thanks doll.

And I got it for a steal for a little over 8k, with parking. 1200 square feet and a real loft. The place used to make some candy bar-I forgot which one though.

Titus said...

Charleston Chews-that was the candy bars.

I would also guess that more democrats live in fabulous cities which means gays.

In just about every store, restaurant, lounge, gym, farmers market, etc it is full of gays in a big city. fags really are everywhere, except Boise.

I think Topeka, Broken Arrow, Pierre and Bismarck were under polled.

DADvocate said...

I thought it was a little less than 3%, which means I probably saw one of the surveys referenced in the study where Gallop got the 3.5%. The surveys referenced range from 1.2% to 5.6%. The highest being nearly 4.7 times the lowest. A pretty big difference.

I'm amazed so many estimated so high. Where I work and live the number of people who are gay or I think are gay comes quite close to the 3.5%. Of course, the Midwest pretty much defines demographic norms for our country as well as lots of other normality.

Perhaps part of the over estimation is how gayness becomes a big issue every time someone comes out of the closet. I even heard Elton John was gay!!!! My! My!

Michelle Dulak Thomson said...

Yes, but Titus, there's a big difference between "15% of the population of big liberal cities is gay" and "20-28% of the entire US population is gay."

Leave aside that I was recently told off on another blog for calling lesbians "gay." (If lesbians are a separate category from "gay," which by hypothesis applies only to guys, the Gallup poll says that a majority of American men -- 56% -- are gay. That's not even counting the switch hitters. Callooh, callay! O frabjous day!)

[Backing up, it'd have to be "15% of the male population of big, mostly-white cities" for it to be plausible, Titus. SF, sure. NYC, maybe. Boston, maybe. Detroit, Baltimore, Oakland, not a chance in hell.]

wv: stlear. I wasn't aware that King Lear had even been beatified.

RuyDiaz said...

Whatever. Why are people so ill-informed?

General lack of scientific knowledge coupled with propaganda and inuendo.

Think of all the things the majority of the people get wrong: conspiracy theories, Astrology, evolution (many conservatives don't believe in evolution, many liberals don't believe in the implications of the theory).

Nothing extraordinary here, really.

AST said...

There are human rights, but no gay rights. There are no black rights or Hispanic rights or Caucasian rights.

DADvocate said...

many conservatives don't believe in evolution, many liberals don't believe in the implications of the theory

Well put.

reformed trucker said...

"Why would women estimate high?"

Maybe because they have carpet-cleaning fantasies of their own. Yum... everyone loves to muff-dive.

Well, except for our friend Titus...

The Crack Emcee said...

This explains why everyone's always trying to push gay issues down our throats. They think it's important but need to cut it out:

What's important to 3% of the population (I think it's 2% actually) doesn't interest me in the least.

And now that I've said that, I want to be clear that I'm not being homophobic or against gays being treated like everyone else. Just that I'm sick of hearing about "Glee" or whatever. Like with NewAge thinking (which is related) we are being manipulated to think a certain way and I, for one, will not go along or applaud it.

David said...

"We're all only estimating."


Except Titus.

edutcher said...

Well, Ann nails it. Democrats are even dumber that we dared fear.

This can be laid at the feet of all the media propaganda.

You can't do a TV show without a token black and a token woman. Next will be a token homosexual.

Bob Ellison said...

Gayness is one of the most vapidly estimated figures around. 3.5% is probably a very good guess, but try getting that past almost any political group

Some medical forensic types have pegged it at about 1.3%, following trends in in venereal diseases.

Seven Machos said...

I taught SAT and GMAT courses for a long time and I concluded eventually that most Americans simply don't understand fractions. And I don't think I fully did, either, until I had to teach them to somebody else.

So maybe a lack of math skill is the problem here.

Renee said...

There are people who are gay, and there are individuals who engaged in homosexual behavior at one point in their lives. I would believe in some social circles that one in three have had a homosexual experience. I had a friend who came out with a girl friend and all, then that was it she went back to men.

AJ Lynch said...

Surveys say many Americans are innumerate. I suspect whoever tallied this survey was innumerate.

Palladian said...

What is "gay", really? I'm exclusively homosexual, but even my boyfriend, earlier in his life, has been with women. And in my career as a professional homosexual, I've been with a lot of "straight" guys, guys who went on to be married to women, or who were married to or dating women when we "hooked up". Marines, athletes, blue-collar macho guys, Latino "thugs"- you wouldn't believe the guys who were eager to fool around with a man. But I would not categorize these men as "gay", even though they enjoyed gobbling cock or taking it up the butt. "Gay" is some weird, nebulous political/cultural construction, and both right-wingers and left-wingers use "gay" to advance their political agendas.

Fen said...

I think that in this context, gay is defined as "born that way"? Not bisexuals or heteros experimenting?

Titus said...

All the poor San Francisco gays have moved to Oakland.

Oakland is actually pretty gay now too.

Weirdly enough, Salt Lake City is pretty gay.

Cities that are not gay: Lexington, Chattanooga, and most of the entire South (except for Hotlanta, nactch) and most of the vast West.

Sure, there are a few gays sprinkled around Montana and Wyoming and Idaho and some of the other flyover states but those gays are totally invisible. Better not seen in those parts of the country, otherwise you will be hanging out in some post having crows pick at your eyes.

The Northeast totally gay. You can be driving on some country road in New Hampshire or Maine or Vermont and come across some lezzie or fag B&B with the rainbow flag flying high. I blame England for New England.

Titus said...

Blacks in big cities hate the gays at some event or family reunion or church but then secretly on the down low go to some seedy place and get their hog sucked and suck hog.

Titus said...

Women are different though. They can go back and forth much more than gay men.

Straight men way have experience with the gay at some point in their life but then go totally straight. Gay men may have experienced a woman when young but then come out gay and stay gay.

Women, on the other hand, seem to be more fickle. They can be lezzie for a little or long time and then all of sudden find the right man.

What's that all about?

Revenant said...

What the hell? I've never heard ANYONE say that that large a percentage of Americans are gay.

Dead Julius said...

Why are people so ill-informed?

They're not ill-informed. They're estimating based on the amount of gayness that they see in entertainment venues, and the amount of gay political controversy that they read and hear about in the media.

Luther said...

Palladian. I don't really give a shit what your particular persuasion might be, nor, most especially, how you enact it.

But, "professional homosexual".

What the fuck does that mean?

Making your preference, normal?

Peter Hoh said...

Sometimes, I think people are just screwing with the pollsters.


But stupidity, and innumeracy, are probably better explanations.

I wonder what kind of results you would get if you asked, "What is 20 percent of 100?"

Palladian said...

"What the fuck does that mean?"

It means my life goal is perverting the Judeo-Christian sexual ethic, whatever that is.

Seven Machos said...

Palladian means that there are dudes who like to be with other dudes but do not and would not consider themselves homosexuals. Very similar to someone who plays golf once a year or does cocaine very, very rarely.

Palladian is gay all the time, no matter what.

Get it?

edutcher said...

Revenant said...

What the hell? I've never heard ANYONE say that that large a percentage of Americans are gay.

I think the Demos are praying (consider that one) that it's true because, with the economy in the tank and Hispanics (and maybe some blacks) forsaking Little Zero, a big urban homosexual population is the only thing that will save them.

Ironic since Zero hates them.

reformed trucker said...

Palladian @ 10:35pm

Nice post. Food for thought.

Simon said...

The reason, I fancy, has nothing to do with homosexuality; it's more closely related to the constant findings that the man on the street—about whom Sid Vicious was quite correct—knows nothing whatsoever about the federal budget. If a man thinks foreign aid is 25% of the budget, is it any surprise that he thinks homosexuals make up about 25% of the population? People are stupid and ill-informed. 'Twas ever thus.

Mumpsimus said...

A simple explanation for this would be that gays are heavily overrepresented (relative to their numbers) in entertainment, the arts, and other highly-visible areas of public life.

I'm guessing that you'd get similar overestimates, for much the same reason, if you substituted "Jewish" for "gay."

Carol_Herman said...

NOPE! What about intelligence? Are intelligent people more likely to be gay? What about Oscar Wilde? Why did he marry and have kids?

Who invented the word "beard?"

Who chose the word "closet?"

What about good looks? More likely for handsomeness in males to go to gay men? Rock Hudson and Cary Grant were gay. And, they loved roles where they could appeal to women.

What about if you used a scale? Sexuality seems to drift along a scale. Some gays are very, very gay. Others? Just a little bit.

What happened to the priesthood, now that pedophilia has been exposed? (It's harder to recruit priests.)

Maybe, the 3.5% represents a percentage of men that would actually ask another man to be his wife?

While what's the percentage of men who really don't want to be committed to anyone? You think men want to get married? HELLO.

Too many men getting married think they'll have a sex partner when they want one. Only to discover their wives get headaches. (And, during sex say things about the ceiling needing painting. While their husbands are not Michelangelo.)

Statistics are so bogus. And, percentages sit in the world of statistics. They're just like closets which can be used to hide one's sexual identity. Not just the wardrobes used for "turn on's.") Geez.

Isn't gay coupling a lot more promiscuous than monogamy?

Carol_Herman said...

I remember a choo-choo train ride, when I was a kid. And, we were passing through farmland. Just a few scattered homes could be seen, way in the distance. Wow, I thought living in one of them would be nice.

When my mom interrupted my reverie. And, said, people inside those homes could get beaten. And, no one would hear them screaming.

Why do heterosexual people assume gay couples would just be ecstatically happy together? Isn't that "casting against type?" Wouldn't work in the movies.

Peter Hoh said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Peter Hoh said...

Carol: Isn't gay coupling a lot more promiscuous than monogamy?

I don't know. Why don't you ask Bill, Newt, or Arnold?

Seven Machos said...

I think it's fair to say that promiscuity goes like this:

1. gay males
2. straight males
3. straight females
4. gay females

Being a gay male is just like being a straight male with more opportunity to meet other people thinking just like you.

Ralph L said...

most Americans simply don't understand fractions
Or decimals. Last week, the NC dept of agriculture sent us new forms for the monthly assessment on our corn purchases from farmers. The amount was supposed to be 3/4ths of a cent per bushel, they wrote it as 0.075 times the no. of bushels. The accompanying letter wasn't clear, either: it said increase of 3/4 cent, not increase to. Maybe they'll fix it next year.

At one time, something like 95% of people married at least once.

Ralph L said...

Seven, that's close. 1-100 are gay males. 101 is female prostitutes and strippers. 102 is straight males. 103 is straight females. 2001 is gay females.

chickenlittle said...

So, is being gay overrated?

Jason (the commenter) said...

The correct answer to the question, what percentage of Americans are gay is:

"I don't know."

And I'm sick of people wondering who is gay. The question shouldn't cross the minds of most people because it's none of their business. I'm gay, it's important for me to know, if I'm thinking of asking someone out. But other than that there's no reason to care.

"What percentage of the population is voyeuristic?" That's a better question, and the answer is close to 100%.

You perverts!

Seven Machos said...

Jason -- Isn't the more pertinent question: what are Americans looking at voyeuristically?

For example, I like to see standard straight men and women as well as hot girl-on-girl action. But secretly seeing gay males having sez does nothing for me. I wonder what the breakdown is here?

Blue@9 said...

What freaks me out is that Dems averaged out at 28%. Assume a decent number stuck with the oft repeated (now discredited) figure of 10%... which means shitloads must have been guessing the 40s or higher. Where the eff was this poll taken, Jared Loughner's brain? Not even a San Franciscan would guess 40% of the entire country was gay.

Chase said...

Only 3.5%

I think a serious case could be made statistically that it's a bit higher, in the 5-8% range. I doubt it's greater then 9%.

All 3 of my now adult children were involved in school, community, and professional theater growing up - my oldest teaches drama at a local University of California campus. Which means we welcomed a larger-than-average population sample of gays visiting our home during those years.

Palladian actually has a bit of a handle on it - it's difficult to actually label every single person.

MarkG said...

People want to know who and how many are gay, and that's that. Gay activists inflate the number and then straights call bullshit on it. And vice versa, perhaps. Controversy ensues.

Seven, how do you know lesbians are the least promiscuous. Is that just a guess because with two women it's twice as likely that one of them has a headache?

Seven Machos said...

Mark -- I'm reasonably sure there have been studies done showing that lesbians are the least promiscuous. Certainly, I can't point you to those studies.

Lesbians are definitely the least likely to get venereal diseases. So, if you think that God uses AIDS to punish homosexuality, then you have to agree, by logic, that God loves lesbians best. And they can be pretty hot. So I don't necessarily blame Him.

DADvocate said...

people inside those homes could get beaten. And, no one would hear them screaming.

Why do heterosexual people assume gay couples would just be ecstatically happy together?


It's too late to look up a reference, but, from what I've read gay male couples have the lowest rate of domestic violence, lesbian couples the highest.

el polacko said...

my only suprise at these poll results is that so many people are now saying what i have long postulated: there's a whole lotta gay guys out there. we'll never know the exact percentage since so many people are in denial about their sexuality or, at least, don't care to discuss it with a pollster.
for right or wrong, most folks subscribe to a 'one-drop'theory of 'gay'. under that theory, if you add up all the guys who are gay but married to a woman, gay but sexually repressed, gay but socially inhibited, 'bi' guys who actually are somewhere along the kinsey scale of gay to straight, men who are otherwise straight but have had engaged in some sexual act with another man out of curiosity, men who use other men's bodies because of circumstances such as confinement, and those happily self-acknowleged, out-of-the-closet gay guys.. you're talking about a pretty darned sizeable chunk of the male population. three percent is laughable..ten percent? perhaps..but i have long thought that it is likely closer to twenty and maybe even a little higher percentage of guys who have, or want, closer emotional and/or sexual relationships with other men, i.e. 'gay'.

women are a whole other story.

MarkG said...

Hot lesbians is a myth. There aren't any. Lesbians being the least likely to get an STD is an interesting point though. That makes sense.

Seven Machos said...

There are plenty of hot lesbians. There are plenty of nasty, butchy ones, too. It must be an interesting social dynamic.

MarkG said...

Madison, on the other hand, has like no gays.

Titus, go to the Harbor Athletic Club. It's not gaydom, but there are at least three "hot" gay guys that do fitness swimming occasionally around mid-afternoon on weekdays. In addition, there's "hot" black guy who prances naked around the locker room occasionally. Yesterday, he did it for a half-hour: shower-sauna-sink-shower-sauna-sink... I don't know who he was after but I avoided eye contact.

"hot" = young, fit, handsome

BTW, Harbor is 50% old geezer and 3.5% gay.

el polacko said...

lesbian relationships tend to still adhere to a 1950's-style butch/femme coupling. men, on the other hand, tend to choose a partner who is more like themselves. discuss...

MarkG said...

men, on the other hand, tend to choose a partner who is more like themselves. discuss..

I have a real soft spot for tomboys. I don't know what that says about me, but I assure you that I'm not a lesbian.

rcocean said...

After watching some Network TV shows I have come to the following conclusions:

1) 25% of America is Black
2) 25% of America is Gay
3) 20% of America is Jewish
4) 15% of America is white, female and really, really hot.
5) 10% of America is Hispanic or Asian.
6) 5% of America is straight, white boring, and masculine. They also commit most of the crimes and toss out a lot of straight lines for sassy females, Gays and cool funny minorities.

rcocean said...

Based on my reading of film reviews, IMDB, and classical film sites, I can say that at least 90 percent of America is Gay.

John Lynch said...

This is why I decided that the DADT hoopla was meaningless. The number of people involved is very low.

3% of the entire volunteer force is around 45,000. Considering that most gays are less likely to serve for reasons other than their sexuality (gays tend to be more liberal, and people with liberal views are less likely to serve) this is just not that many people. Policy could go either way with very little impact on the force.

So, might as well do the right thing.

Same argument works for gay marriage. It's just not that many people, and some percentage won't get married anyway. Why not just do the right thing?

Revenant said...

After watching some Network TV shows I have come to the following conclusions:

The top 10 current shows are:
1. House
2. Grey's Anatomy
3. Bones
4. NCIS
5. Game of Thrones
6. Glee
7. Criminal Minds
8. Supernatural
9. American Idol
10. The Mentalist

Looks pretty damned white and hetero to me.

MarkG said...

5% of America is straight, white boring, and masculine. They also commit most of the crimes and toss out a lot of straight lines for sassy females

One of the funniest things I heard about the show Law & Order was that New York City had more white-on-black hate crime than the country as a whole, and all of those hateful New York criminals had southern accents.

MarkG said...

Everything I've heard about Glee (which I haven't watched) is Gay, Gay, Gay.

Ralph L said...

There are plenty of hot lesbians

1. There's money involved
or
2. Raped or abused when young. Not sick of dicks, just the assholes behind them.
or, most likely,
3. 1&2

Ralph L said...

Looks pretty damned white and hetero to me
Major characters on House, Bones, and Glee are part-time lesbians. Criminal Minds has had some gay perps. NCIS is very straight, except David McCollum is one of Britain's stately homos.

Don't watch the other shows.

Gary Rosen said...

"But secretly seeing gay males having sez does nothing for me."

Looks like a typo. Did you mean "sex", or "Pez"?

Gary Rosen said...

"Lesbians are definitely the least likely to get venereal diseases."

Is that because of lack of promiscuity or, uh, physics?

Blue@9 said...

Hell, who do you think runs the fashion industry? You think it's a coincidence that models are stick-thin waifs? Thank god that after all this attempted mind-control, most men still like boobs (see Christina Hendricks).

Bart Hall (Kansas, USA) said...

Probably the best survey on the issue was done by Statistics Canada back in 2003. You'll have to scroll to the very bottom for details, but the study found that 1% of the population was homosexual and another 0.7% bisexual, and that's with a sample size of 135,000.

In Australia the number is 1.2% homosexual and about 1% bisexual. Source: The 2003 'Sex in Australia' survey of 20,000 people, with a special weighting to Sydney's homosexual center.

In the UK, the Integrated Household Survey in 2010 arrived at 1% homosexual and 0.5% bisexual, with a sample size of 450,000.

The statistics are quite consistent elsewhere in the Anglosphere and they're unlikely to be much different in the US.

Michael said...

Perhaps they were surveying the attitudes of the modern man in which case they were off by a mile. Probably 86% are gay-ish.

Tigerbythetail said...

We all have the same rights, no?

dave in boca said...

"Maybe Dems are dumber."

BINGO...!!!

dave in boca said...

Why are people so ill-informed?

They're not ill-informed. They're estimating based on the amount of gayness that they see in entertainment venues, and the amount of gay political controversy that they read and hear about in the media.


And since Dems have little or no critical faculties attached to their so-called "intellects," they simply make presumptions and regurgitate these presumptions unconsciously.

"The unexamined life is not worth living." Socrates

Unless you've been mis-educated in the public school system, and have no ability to analyze your life, except in terms relating to the oxymoronic "social sciences."

Then, most likely, you're a Dem.

edutcher said...

Seven Machos said...

I think it's fair to say that promiscuity goes like this:

1. gay males
2. straight males
3. straight females
4. gay females


The New York City Public Health Department did a study in '65 and found that male homosexuals had a 10 times greater venereal disease rate than male heterosexuals and female homosexuals had a 3 times greater venereal disease rate than female heterosexuals.

Granted, this was done just before all the moral standards came down, but, human nature being what it is, it's probably enough to refute the idea female homosexuals are somehow more faithful than their heterosexual counterparts.

Ralph L said...

female homosexuals are somehow more faithful than their heterosexual counterparts
But the heteros are having a lot more sex--and with dogs, I mean, men.

No doubt some of those homo females were prostitutes--that would throw the VD stats off.

Henry said...

Surprising. I thought the 10% number had been throw out so often that most person's wrong answer would be that.

clint said...

Wow.

That puts some perspective on budget issues.

Americans basically don't understand numbers.

Heck, 1.6 trillion sounds a lot smaller than 450 billion.

Class factotum said...

I concluded eventually that most Americans simply don't understand fractions.

Homer Simpson once said, "Sick on a Saturday? What are the odds of that happening? Like one in a thousand?"

He pretty much sums up the general understanding of probability and statistics.

Trapper Townshend said...

A non-negligible number of people in the world think 1/4 is bigger than 1/3. This survey tells us nothing about gay people or attitudes toward them, it just tells us that human beings don't understand percentages.

Pogo said...

Democrats estimate that 28% of Americans are gay?

Propaganda works.

djf said...

This poll stinks. Where is the option "I don't support more special rights for gays because they are perverted deviants." ??? That is the only option I would choose.

The reality is only 1 out 100 men are exclusively gay, that is, only sexually attracted to other men. Not 10%, not 30%, these numbers are just insane.

Hey gay men, just stay in the closet, and do whatever you do behind closed doors, but don't expect special rights because you want to lick each other's anus!

Freeman Hunt said...

In other news, Americans estimate that 30% is "at least 20 out of 30 or something. Why are you asking me this? Is it supposed to rain or something?"

MayBee said...

Do gay rights include collective bargaining rights?

MayBee said...

I can see why people would overestimate. Gay people are overrepresented in the high profile fashion, design, and entertainment fields. Gay issues are featured prominently in politics. It's easy to get the impression that gay people are a much larger percentage of the population than they are.

I wonder what a similar poll would show about the perception of the size of the Jewish population.

Skyler said...

People think there are so many homosexuals because there is seemingly a quota of them in the movies and on tv. Reality TV is not broadcast without 1/5 homosexuals.

james said...

Just a dang min here, I OBJECT to the poll at bottom of this post, the question and all the possible answers assumes gay marriage is a civil rights issue, nothing could be further from the truth. Just because a lie is repeated often doesnt mean it becomes truth.

HAPPY MEMORIAL DAY!

Harold said...

reading through the comments, Palladian said " And in my career as a professional homosexual, "

What the hell is a professional homosexual?

Aside from that, a lot of people really do not understand numbers. The average America also thinks blacks constitute more than 20% of the population- and they're at 10-11%. There are other surveys on that- you can look themn up or take my word on it.

windbag said...

Could it be that it's not a gay/straight issue at all, but rather a victim issue? Democrats filter issues through the victim lens. The strategy of advancing the homosexual cause as one of being oppressed and a human rights issue certainly casts homosexuals in the role of victim.

Fertile ground for Dems to pick up more victims to add to the grievance choir they lead. So, it's in their interests to cast the net as far and wide as possible. They see victims everywhere, manufactured or real.

Mickey said...

That is surprising that people estimate so high on this.

I remember a time when gayness was incomprehensible and that, even after being told that gay people existed, I still didn't believe it. Apart from the obvious question, "how would that even work?" was wondering how it would exist in any significant way through evolution by natural selection.

Then I wondered how such people would even function socially. There are so many implicit assumptions people make about one another through ordinary social interaction, and one of them is that guys like girls and vice versa.

I was a pretty precocious 10-year-old. I think that's how old I was. Might have even been older. Just not precocious enough to know that there was such a thing as gayness.

Because part of me would have answered "zero" to this poll, thinking that people who say they're gay are just acting that way to be funny. How I've managed to have openly gay and lesbian friends in my life, I guess, is a testament to how it really doesn't matter to me either way.

I don't have to understand how it works because it's not my business anyway.

J said...

Less than half the country can name the Vice President.

People are stupid.

Milwaukee said...

I really don't care. As a former high school teacher, I used to tell my students that underwear covered their private parts. Which meant those parts were private and not appropriate for discussions during class. It wasn't health class.

One time I did have a gay student. I interfered when students tried to victimize another with teasing. He told me not to bother, I told him I wasn't going to have teasing in my classroom. One day he was gone, and one who would be teasing asked me if I thought the absent student was gay. My response was that the only reason a person needs to know the sexual orientation of another is if they wanted a personal intimate relationship with that person. I didn't, so I didn't care. The questioner assured us all he didn't want an intimate relationship with the absent student.

On the one hand, I don't agree with discriminating against people because of their sexual orientation. On the other hand, I really don't want to think about what people are doing in the privacy of their bedrooms. Anyone announcing they are gay is announcing what sort of sexual activities they like. Too Much Information.

Milwaukee said...

Sometimes a person's orientation is really not important, sometimes it is. King Richard the Lion-hearted, of the 5th Crusade, was gay. That is important. The King of France was one of his former lovers. The breakup wasn't nice, and they hated each other. Only they were both the head of their respective armies in the Holy Land, and were unable to get along. No doubt that contributed to their military failure.

Didn't the American Psychological people come out recently and say there is nothing that can be determined to cause gayness, other than choice? Not the dominating mother, not birth order, nothing.

Michelle Dulak Thomson said...

MayBee,

I can see why people would overestimate. Gay people are overrepresented in the high profile fashion, design, and entertainment fields.

Not to mention the steel industry:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=icIwKaci3MI

Seriously, I do realize that fashion and design are "high profile," in the sense that they take up a lot of space in the remaining major newspapers ... but does anyone actually read those sections? I do not understand why the 99+% of the population that can't afford anything discussed in those pages would be interested enough to open them.

I guess you're saying that people are "reasoning" like this: (1) a large fraction of print media attention is given over to stuff like couture and interior decoration; (2) therefore these must be large industries; (3) since these fields are notoriously full of gay men, (4) there must be an awful lot of gay men.

Gays in entertainment? Gay characters, yes, but actual out gays in Hollywood or TV or music are scarce.

As for "gay issues" being "featured prominently in politics," yep, that would be my guess for the main cause. If something's constantly talked about, people do assume large numbers of people and/or large sums of cash are implicated somehow. I wonder how many people realize that Jews are ca. 2% of the US population? Or Asian-Americans less than 5%?

MayBee said...

Michelle Dulak Thomson:

Good points. In addition to fashion and design in print, I would add hair and makeup stylists that people (especially women) come in contact with.

Gays in entertainment? Gay characters, yes, but actual out gays in Hollywood or TV or music are scarce.

There are lots of out gays in Hollywood, but not lots of out gay actors or singers. In addition to gay characters.

JNWICKEY said...

The cutting edge of cultural change is led by almost all major media, sources of information that prime politicians, more than other groups, to believe that that sexual freedom has become a normalized part of the culture, that anyone might possibly choose to become gay, that people should talk openly about their sexual inclinations and urgent desires, that sexual would be routine activities were people primed to be less uptight and more open

Seven Machos said...

The cutting edge of cultural change is led by almost all major media

No. "The media" is mostly a bunch of 30k schmucks living in crappy apartments.

The technology of birth control and condoms and medical science in general has led to everything you speak of. Moreover, a little voice inside your writing suggests that you think it's all a bad thing. Why, exactly?

reformed trucker said...

"What the hell ia a professional homosexual?" - Harold

For hire; rental unit.

Michelle Dulak Thomson said...

J,

Less than half the country can name the Vice President.

People are stupid.


Or maybe they're just conserving the space in their brains for important stuff, a la Sherlock Holmes?

Biden as VP is the most brilliant thing Obama ever did. It ensures that Biden can't do any serious harm himself, and guarantees that no one will harm Obama, lest there be a Biden Presidency.

(Yeah, that's old, but I do try to recycle, like a good Left Coaster.)

Skyler said...

Milwaukee charged, ". . . King Richard the Lion-hearted, of the 5th Crusade, was gay."

Give me a break. This is more silliness from the homosexual political machine. It is an attempt to change history, a la the soviets, to make their theories seem more legitimate.

It would be more intellectually honest, Milwaukee, for you to at least put in a caveat that it is only some historians who believe that Richard Lionhearted was a homosexual, because really there is only one kook who makes the claim.

Robin said...

The discrepancy comes from intentional misrepresentation of their frequency by advocates and media.

carrie said...

It depends upon what you mean by gay rights--if you are talking emplyment, housing, etc. then gay rights are easy to support. But if you are talking about marriage, then there are differences that I don't think the gays are taking into account and I don't think the number of gays makes any difference when considering those differences. Monogamy is a critical part of heterosexual marriage. I think that monogamy would be a critical element of a lesbian marriage, but based upon the gay men that I know I don't think that monogamy would be a critical element of most gay marriage. Heterosexual marriages can result in children and marriage provides structure and support for the family. It is important that marriage continue to support the heterosexual family because kids do better in a two parenet home which means that monogamy needs to remain a part of marriage. It would help their cause if the gays would tell us what gay marriage would really mean (other than one spouse getting health insurance and retirement bernefits through the other spouse's employement). However, gays and the media seems to have a code of silence when it comes to reporting the moral codes of gay men and gay marriages.

abeer ahmed said...

visit us on lifeandstylemag.com
http://whois.domaintasks.com/lifeandstylemag.com