Often times the religious Americans are characterized as being anti LGBTQ. But are they? Have religious Americans unwittingly become the scapegoats for those seeking equality for the LGBTQ community?
Luckily for us there is data surrounding this. The Pew Research center, a nonpartisan American think tank based in Washington, D.C, has completed a Religious Landscape Study, part of which includes studying the views of religious groups on the LGBTQ community.
What Do the Numbers Say?
As of 2014 62% of all religious Americans stated that homosexuality should be accepted. This is a up from 50% in 2007 – a 24% increase in 7 years. When it comes to same sex marriage 53% of religious Americans favor same sex marriage as of 2014. Compare that with a similar study of all Americans from Pew – in 2014 52% of all Americans approved of same sex marriage up from 37% in 2007. Unfortunately, the broader homosexual data is not generated for all American households which makes the comparison between broad homosexuality acceptance muddy. One assumption we need to make to draw any conclusions on this data is that these views can not be less accepting then same sex marriage, a more polarizing issue then broader homosexuality. What is clear is that the direction of both groups has moved to a more accepting stance of LGBTQ lifestyles. Religious communities have moved so far on the issue that acceptance now outweighs all other views combined – it is the normal behavior for religious groups to accept the LGBTQ community at large. When it comes to religious American’s views on same sex marriage almost exactly match the general public.
With same sex marriage acceptance virtually the same for both groups, religious Americans and the American public at large, it would be incorrect to claim that religious Americans are anti LGBTQ.