Skip to comments.Our Gay-Marriage Experiment (Polls show that more Americans favor it now than 15 years ago)
Posted on 08/22/2011 7:36:31 AM PDT by SeekAndFind
One of the few issues on which opinion has moved left over the last few years is same-sex marriage. In 1996, Gallup found that Americans opposed it by a 68 percent to 27 percent margin. Last May, Gallup found Americans in favor by 53 percent to 45 percent. Thats a huge change in 15 years.
Other polls have shown similar movement. Pew Research reported last week that 45 percent favored same-sex marriage and 46 percent were opposed a dead heat. Pew polls in 2008 and 2009 found only 35 percent to 40 percent in favor.
This is an issue on which the differences between age groups are as large as any I can remember. In the May Gallup poll, 70 percent of those under age 35 favored same-sex marriage. Only 39 percent of those over 55 agreed.
So while opinion on one controversial cultural issue, abortion, has not changed much, opinion on same-sex marriage has changed vastly.
Why? One reason is probably that as people learn that friends and relatives are gay, they become more sympathetic to gay rights. We see a similar change in voters willingness to elect openly gay candidates to Congress and other offices.
But increasing support for same-sex marriage causes problems for politicians. When two-thirds of voters were opposed, it didnt: Almost everyone opposed it. Possible exception: Barack Obama, running for state senate in a university-dominated district in 1996.
As a candidate for U.S. senator and president, Obama said he opposed same-sex marriage. As president, he says he still does, but his opinion is evolving.
This may reflect a split between Democratic core constituencies. Affluent liberals overwhelmingly favor same-sex marriage. But most black voters are opposed.
In a 2008 referendum in California, 70 percent of blacks voted against same-sex marriage. A same-sex-marriage bill was defeated this year in Maryland after black Democratic legislators opposed it. Same-sex marriage would be legal in California and Maryland were it not for opposition by black voters.
Mainstream media reporters pepper Republican presidential candidates with questions about the issue but seldom ask Obama about it. But if its a fair question for Republicans, its a fair question for Democrats, as well.
The problem for Republican politicians is not that opposition to same-sex marriage antagonizes gay voters. According to exit polls in the last three presidential elections, gays and lesbians made up just 3 percent of the electorate, and they were one of the few groups that voted for John McCain in 2008 in larger numbers than had voted for George W. Bush in 2004.
The Republicans problem is young voters. Huge majorities of them favor same-sex marriage, and for most of them its simply a no-brainer. They must have been turned off if they were watching the Republican presidential candidates vie with each other in opposing it in the Fox News/Washington Examiner debate in Iowa.
The constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage that they supported is never going to get a two-thirds vote in Congress or be ratified by three-quarters of state legislatures. Unless the Supreme Court rules there is a constitutional right to same-sex marriage, this is an issue that is going to be decided by the states.
Opponents of same-sex marriage argue that it would weaken the institution of the family. Certainly there are problems there: Rising percentages of children are raised by one parent or none, and nearly 50 percent of teenage children in non-college households did not live with both parents. Yet outcomes for children raised in two-parent families are far better than for those who are not.
But as one who favors same-sex marriage for reasons set out in Jonathan Rauchs 2004 book Gay Marriage, I think the institution of the family is less threatened by a few people who want to get married than by the very many more people who get divorced or who have children without getting married at all.
In any case, we now have an experiment going on. Some 11 percent of Americans live in the six states and the District of Columbia that allow same-sex marriage. That would rise to 23 percent if California voters, who narrowly rejected it, switch. Other states may follow. On the other hand, states where blacks and white evangelical Protestants form a majority are unlikely to accept it any time soon.
We will be able to see how things work out and make judgments, without much need for guidance from our presidents or presidential candidates.
Michael Barone is senior political analyst for the Washington Examiner
yes Virginia...there is a plot to overthrow the Republic with a Marxist dictatorship...
We can no more pass a law allowing gay marriage than we can pass one allowing gays to procreate anally. A law doesn’t make the sky red or grass purple.
You may be right to a degree, but I think it’s one of exhaustion — you can’t die on every hill and fight every battle - and the left is attacking everywhere. I think some folks have just said “let them have their fag marriage - they won’t like it anyway because these are not committment type folks” — and just given up on fighting the issue.
Not saying that’s right, just a guess as to why this is - as Barone says - one of the very few times where we’ve “moved left.” I think its just battle fatigue.
RE: We can no more pass a law allowing gay marriage than we can pass one allowing gays to procreate anally
That is why gays are asking and clamoring for changes to ADOPTION LAWS.
Yes, just what we need right now.
Another disastrous, stupid, idiotic, insensible, moronic social experiment.
When all of us in the collective that was once the American Republic are compelled by threat of force to recognize two men as being married ... to each other ... then we can all rejoice in yet another triumph for progressivism.
"We have no government armed with power capable of contending with human passions unbridled by morality and religion. Avarice, ambition, revenge or gallantry would break the strongest cords of our Constitution as a whale goes through a net. Our Constitution is designed only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate for any other."
-- John Adams
Church Attendance In America Is Declining
BS....Every state which held a referendum on the issue said “no gay marriage”.
“thanks to the NFT and NEA propaganda....people are dumber than 15 years ago...”
Indeed. I think the rise of Islam and socialism are in fact God’s judgment on the West for rejecting his Biblical standards in many areas, certainly including but not limited to marriage and family.
I think Vaquero is right.....people are DUMBER! Wonder how many people REALLY know what being gay is?
RE: BS....Every state which held a referendum on the issue said no gay marriage.
Not something to really cheer about. This article does show that a majority of Americans still oppose gay marriage today, but that majority is SHRINKING as the years go by.
Wait another ten years and you just might be UNPLEASNTLY surprised.
It’s not just the left that is pushing this madness. Barone is a self-described conservative. So are many on the National Review staff who are positively GIDDY about gay couplings. For that matter, the whole issue is being promoted in the courts by Ted Olson, who was at one time a big hero here on Free Republic. Bottom line: the ELITES in this country—many of them GOP stalwarts—are out to kill marriage, and they are doing a very good job.
He’s going to come out in favor of gay marriage. He will throw the blacks under the bus. WTF are they going to do, vote for an “evil white Republican?”
Sheep have more self awareness.
1. Take over American schools, kindergarten to graduate school. Indoctrinate and destroy Conservatism.
2. Use unions to hold American business hostage. Destroy incentive and capital.
3. Force homosexuality upon normal Americans. Indoctrinate.
4. Weaken America's ability to defend itself. Protest and Indoctrinate.
5. Use anarchy to overcome opposition.
6. Crush and destroy remaining Conservative opposition through control of all media outlets. Lie, cover-up and indoctrinate.
Working like a charm!
With the destruction of the nuclear family being pushed by these so-called conservatives, who needs liberals? The final goal of absolute dependence on the state will kill true conservatism as well. But God will have the final say.
Exactly. And the gays fight hard against any referendum where “the people” have a say about this. They always lose and they know it.
Exactly. These folks who say they’re “socially liberally but fiscally conservative” don’t seem to acknowledge the basic fact that the latter is impossible without the former.
What bothers me much more than the term “marriage” for homosexuals is when they use the words “husband” or “wife.” “Husband” and “wife” are intrinsically complementary, describing a relationship between people differing in an essential and primary quality. It’s like the relationship between parent and child, not like the relationship between siblings.
Really? I had a childhood friend who in his 40's "came out." Left his wife and two kids, to shack up with his "boyfriend." 5 years later and he is on "partner" number 4 or 5 and acts like an total ass, some suspect he is on drugs, etc....
So he ruined his family and his life. I definitely became LESS sympathetic.
Barone is drinking the purple Kool Aid from the fag lobby.
Call their bluff and put it to a vote. all 31 of 31 states that held referendum and let the people decide soundly rejected perverted marriage, even the uber-liberal progressive peoples socialist utopia of California, twice! That’s why they need liberal legislators and activist liberal judges to foist the issue onto the public. Not to mention propaganda polls like the one that’s posted here..
you make a great point; to a liberal pollster, people want to seem open minded and they support gay marriage — but in the privacy of the voting booth in a referendum — it’s HELL NO. VERY GOOD POINT.
In NY hard to place black boys are now being adopted by "married" gay white dads. Someday the boys will write poetry like Barky:
Pop takes another shot, neat,
Points out the same amber
Stain on his shorts that Ive got on mine, and
Makes me smell his smell, coming
By Barack Hussein Obama, Jr.
Yes, people do not know what “gay” sex entails. Maybe we should insist on calling it pan-sexuality because anything goes. And those who practice it are descending into a hell of their own making, dragging down the whole society. The most tragic victims are the vulnerable children of their own families, impressionable younger siblings, abandoned spouses, and the youngsters they entrap in their deadly lifestyle.
You aren’t going to like what I have to say, but it is our fault. While we have been coming up with thoughtful analysis of the issue our children have been brainwashed with slogans repeated over and over in school and the media.
Think about it. How many people order a Coke because they have done an analysis of the ingredients and how many order it because “it’s the real thing” and “things go better with coke”?
"It is substantially true that virtue or morality is a necessary spring of popular government. The rule, indeed, extends with more or less force to every species of free government. Who that is a sincere friend to it can look with indifference upon attempts to shake the foundation of the fabric?"
-- George Washington, Farewell Address
Agreed. But that’s been the goal of feminazism all along. To utterly destroy all male and female distinctives. I wouldn’t be surprised if they criminalize Father’s Day and Mother’s Day eventually.
Spot on. We had to deal with this "people should be free to marry whoever they want to" BS from our kids when we had to put them in government schools due to financial problems.
When they say that to you, do you ever say back “Then people should be free to marry their brother or sister? If not, then why not?”
One of the things that held this up in the 1980s and 1990s was the spread of HIV and Aid’s symptoms. I remember liberals joining gays in blaming Reagan and Pat Robertson for them giving each other Aids. Seeing gays killing themselves and blaming others was a huge turnoff for most.
But HIV drugs and the MSM and public schools and many gay oriented childrens TV shows have changed the political landscape on this, as all we hear about it is those ‘Same Sex partners just wanting to be happy like us’ stories on the news.
What tells me we lost on this? That FNC (Republican party TV) is not willing to get involved with issues like opposing DADT repeal. That is a bad sign because they are the key to anti-Democrat voters.
Too bad Barone feels this way. He is usually right about so many things.
But he's so wrong here. The institution of the heterosexual marriage IS indeed very threatened and affected by gay marriage.
As general codes of masculinity erode, the heterosexual male loses his ability and the dedication necessary to be a strong husband and father. Homosexual propoganda speeds the process.
In other words, getting rid of gay activism and propoganda (and hopefully replacing it with positive messages about heterosexuality) would indeed strengthen the institution of the traditional family. Men need positive messages to succeed in marriage, not the negative garbage we get 24/7. Sexual license which erupted in the 60's has led us down the path to its inevitable end...acceptance of homosexuality. The whole movement of "free love", which of course includes homosexuality, destroys true family.
Barone...get with it!
Don't forget that states like Iowa were a victim of judicial activism. And NY accepted it AGAINST the voters' wishes.
I'm not sure if any State's referendum has succeeded. Even very liberal Hawaii has rejected gay marriage via referendum.
We had a Speaker of the House from San Francisco. This is what has caused the recent uptick in gay activism IMO. The gays feel empowered. But when the truth gets out that they are only 3% of the population, (and I think a few very sordid, high-profile gay scandals will hit the headlines before this is all over) I think the public is going to reverse course on this issue and stand against any further progress by the gay lobby. Can't come soon enough.
No, although I probably should have. What I did say is to remind them of what the Bible says about homosexuality (they were brought up in church), then when they objected to say to them, "Hey, if you've a problem with that take it up with Him, I'm just the messenger."
Of course, especially considering ALL of the mainline/largest denominations, along with many of the "Emergant" Churches favor homosexual "rights."
Oddly enough too, as homosexual rights, and religious freedom CANNOT COEXIST.
That’s a good and true response. What I do not understand is how anyone who thinks marriage should be legally redefined from male/female to “gender-neutral” should have any problem with consensual incestuous and polygamous marriages.
It's just his personal opinion, not his political analysis, which is why I read him.
All of the cultural marxism since the 1960s is really taking a toll on the young.
Which is the whole point.
"Gay marriage" </cant> has never been about marriage, it's always been about destroying marriage and the fact that it points powerfully, and with society's heavy sanction, toward the normality of heterosexual unions, which homosexuals hate because it throws in high relief their deviancy and perversion.
Gays hate marriage, they hate its indictment of homosexuality, and they have said so repeatedly in their lounges. Time to take them at their word and fight back.
Homosex is unnatural, perverted, and foul, and it undermines society.
And I want to know why. Why do RNC members tolerate homosexuals in their midst and help them subvert and undercut conservatives on the subject?
You know that was why Senator (and now presidential primary candidate) Rick Santorum was traduced, betrayed, and thrown to the wolves politically -- because he was so decent, and so conservative. The RNC and Karl Rove destroyed him.
More people are getting desensitized, plus they don’t understand that it doesn’t stop at gay so-called marriage, it eventually infringes on our freedoms, including religious freedoms.
“As general codes of masculinity erode, the heterosexual male loses his ability and the dedication necessary to be a strong husband and father. Homosexual propoganda speeds the process.
“In other words, getting rid of gay activism and propoganda (and hopefully replacing it with positive messages about heterosexuality) would indeed strengthen the institution of the traditional family. Men need positive messages to succeed in marriage, not the negative garbage we get 24/7. “
Agreed. Along those lines, I watched 2 reruns of “Father Knows Best” on the Antenna TV network today. I loved both episodes. They totally endorsed the traditional family with intelligent writing and acting. And the positive image of the strong, intelligent Dad in Robert Young’s character was terrific and refreshing.
Of course, it's not a fare fight. Limp spined and limp-wrist loving Barone thinks that New York lawfully passed gay marriage, we did not. It was passed illegally under special rules without debate. And it pased because 4 Republicans lied to their constituents and sold out. There was no referendum. We the peons cannot vote. And our elected leaders care not a wit for our opinion. And that starts with the liberals running the GOP in NY, the same liberals that Barone loves. The sad part is National Review running this garbage.
You totally missed my point. Everything you said is true about the liberal influence in our media and our schools and our culture, and that is fatigueing.
I also meant that the fatigue comes from so many battles, not expenditure of energy on this issue. Like I said, you missed my point.
Add to that...suicide.
Barone has got to have some screws loose. How in the world can he defend such a position. Where are the stats to back that one up? I have to shake my head in disbelief sometimes. With all this talk of being “progressive” and “moving forward,” you’ve got to ask yourself, just what in the world it is we’re progressing to? What are we moving towards? The only conclusion one can come to is...we’re heading for the proverbial cliff and the point of no return. Just look at the mess our society is in! For all the talk of “freedom,” “liberation,” “to each his/her own,” “if it feels good, just do it” crapola...look at the mess we are in! In the words of the infamous Maxine Waters, liberals/progressives and the ills they’ve plagued upon our society, well...they can all just go straight to...
And I want to know why. Why do RNC members tolerate homosexuals in their midst and help them subvert and undercut conservatives on the subject?<<<
Because they’re liberals and atheists. The rot has infected both parties.