Last week, the Center for American Progress’s LGBT Progress project analyzed the changing trends in Americans’ support of marriage equality. The result: an infographic showing that marriage equality is now a mainstream American value.
The researchers used an assortment of polls to visually map out Americans’ increasing support for the freedom to marry over the last couple of years. According to a Gallup poll referenced in the infographic, the percentage of Americans who believe marriage equality should be recognized by the law has increased dramatically from approximately 28% of the general population in 1996 to approximately 54% of the general population in 2011. An ABC News/Washington Post poll reinforces this trend by showing that the strength of support for marriage equality outstrips the strength of opposition. Today, 39% of Americans strongly support marriage equality while only 32% strongly oppose it.
Perhaps most interesting about the infographic is the section that discusses opinions on marriage equality in states with November ballot initiatives. The WBUR public radio poll used in the section shows that the majority of Americans in the states of Maine, Maryland, Minnesota, and Washington support marriage equality. This increases the likelihood that marriage equality will become a reality in these states come November. In fact, support for marriage equality is leading in polls by as many as 21 percentage points in the state of Washington, a huge victory for LGBT activists nationwide.
Take Action: As exciting as the news displayed in the infographic may be, we still have some work to do. A CNN poll used in the study shows that only 34% of Americans 64 years of age and older support marriage equality. Although this number is up from 24% in 2009, we can make it higher. Since nearly 64% of PFLAG’s membership is age 56 and over and nearly 28% age 66 and over, according to PFLAG’s 2011 Chapter Needs Assessment Survey, it is clear that many of us can relate to this demographic. Begin conversations with your friends, family members, and neighbors about the importance of securing equal rights for all committed couples, especially if you live in Maine, Maryland, Minnesota, or Washington. Then, click here to join our PFLAG action e-list. As the infographic shows, 2012 is a year of changing hearts and minds. By speaking out to those in your community, you can truly make a difference!