It cannot be understated how swiftly Americans have come around to the idea of marriage equality. Or gay marriage, depending on your preference.
Since 2010, support for gay marriage has exploded in a sharp sea change not normally seen even on the most rapidly evolving social issues.I expected such an evolution of thought, but nobody could have imagined a day so soon when politicians would be tripping over themselves to come out for gay marriage.
Republican Sen. Rob Portman of Ohio barely caused a ripple when he announced Thursday that he no longer opposes same-sex marriage. Portman said he has reconsidered the issue in the two years since learning that his son is gay.
“There’s just been a real huge sea change in how people view gay marriage,” says Dawn Michelle Baunach, a sociologist at Georgia State University who has tracked attitudes toward same-sex marriage over the past two decades.
“In 1988, we had 72 percent of people who said they disapproved of gay marriage, and only 13 percent approved. But by 2010, we had cut disapproval almost in half, and approval has quadrupled,” she told NPR.
The latest public opinion surveys show an even greater jump, NPR reports. About one-third of Americans now oppose gay marriage, while some 58 percent support it.
The movement on this issue is just astounding. It seems to be related to a personalization of the issue. We all know someone who is gay. It’s less of an abstract issue. We like our gay friends and want them to have the same rights and opportunities we do.
How refreshing. NFL linebacker Scott Fujita said it best in a guest column yesterday in the New York Times.
How do you feel about gay marriage as the Supreme Court gets set to hear arguments? How your opinion changed at all?