Young Americans are becoming less comfortable with LGBT+ people, study finds

Lowenna Waters
Wednesday 26 June 2019 08:00
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Picture:(Getty Images)

According to a new survey, young American's acceptance of LGBT+ people has fallen for the second year in a row, and it could be to do with the current Trump administration.

On Monday, GLAAD released its 2019 Accelerating Acceptance Report, which asked 1,970 Americans over the age of 18 a series of questions about their reactions to a series of situations involving LGBT+ people. The survey was conducted in January 2019 by The Harris Poll, a New York-based research firm, reports the Huffington Post.

Questions participants were asked included how they felt about seeing a same-sex couple holding hands; learning your family member or doctor identifies as LGBT+; or learning that the teacher for your child's class is LGBT+.

The survey found that the percentage of LGBT+ adults who felt 'very' or 'somewhat' comfortable with this was only 49 per cent, which showed no change from 2018. For the 18 to 34 category, the percentage fell from 53 to 45 per cent.

2019 marks the second year in a row that LGBT+ acceptance has dropped, with the figure standing at 63 per cent in 2017, reports the Huffington Post.

In a statement issued Monday, GLAAD representative said that the drop could be to do with 'divisive rhetoric in both politics and culture'.

Last year, when we saw an erosion in LGBTQ acceptance, GLAAD doubled down on our formula for making positive culture change.

She added:

As we commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall riots, LGBTQ people and allies must urgently address today’s cultural crisis by being visible and vigilant.

Speaking to the Daily Beast, Sarah Kate Ellis, president and CEO of GLAAD said:

The statistics are counterintuitive to what we believe. But if we stop and think about it for a second, newness takes a while to turn into acceptance. They’re interfacing with new gender identities and sexual orientations, so that takes a minute to get used to.

Then, look at this current administration we’re living under, and its culture of hate and discrimination. Those are the two issues at hand here that emerged from the focus groups.

She also said that the Trump administration's actions and words were key:

If we had an administration helping people, making them understand, and bringing together, not dividing people, we’d be in a much more different position than we are now.

Finally, echoing these sentiments, CEO of Harris Poll John Gerzema told the Huffington Post:

We count on the narrative that young people are more progressive and tolerant.

These numbers are very alarming and signal a looming social crisis in discrimination.

He added:

In this toxic age, tolerance––even among youth––now seems to be parsed out. Nothing today should be taken for granted.

Come on, kids, love is love!

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HT Huff Post

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