With President Obama’s recent announcement that he at least personally endorses gay marriage as something that should be legal and recognized in the United States, many are wondering about his motives. After all, the surprise revelation that he had “evolved” on the issue during his presidency left many wondering what the political side of this interview topic was and what Obama was trying to achieve. Many believe that Obama, regardless of what he personally believes when no one is looking, strategically made this announcement to try to get more votes from a segment of the population that might be on the fence. But just how much of the American population is gay? Well, Common Sense Conspiracy did a little investigating, and you might be surprised to find out that no one really knows for sure. Well, maybe you figured that, but the estimates are miles apart.
Back in 1948, an author named Alfred Kinsey released a book called Sexual Behavior in the Human Male. It made what was a startling accusation at the time that 10% of all males in the United States are gay. In 1948, social consciousness was not as great as it is today, in fact, not even close. The idea that a huge number like 10% was shocking to most in the mainstream. In 1993, another survey came up with the figure that 9% of men and 5% of women had at least dabbled in homosexual relationships in some form or another. And the 2000 United States Census revealed that less than 1% of Americans had a gay person in their household.
Those numbers probably don’t shock anyone today. But in August 2002, a Gallup poll was conducted, and it estimated that 21% of men were gay and 22% of women. That’s a hell of an increase over roughly a decade. And it approaches a scary number to homophobes…almost a quarter of the population in America is gay. But how could the numbers differ so much after so little a time? Well, no one knows for sure, but many statisticians believe that the discrepancy is not really a discrepancy at all. These polls require people to admit their sexual orientation. Apparently, just ten years from 2002, admitting that you were gay, even in an anonymous setting, was still taboo. Not many were willing to go through with it. A decade later, a much larger segment of the population was willing to tell the truth in the survey. So, it is a lot more likely that the numbers from the Gallup poll in 2002 were always the case, and not the results of some mass homosexual movement over a decade’s time.
It is quite likely that even the larger numbers from the 2002 survey are grossly incorrect. Think of how many people denied their own sexuality in surveys in 1993 and earlier. Then, by 2002, the number doubled. But how many people still refused to acknowledge their sexual orientation?
Unfortunately, the CSC found that there has not been a very comprehensive, nationally-recognized survey of this in the last ten years. Surely it is time for a new Gallup poll to see how many people come forward in 2012. However, if you assume that the numbers from the 2002 poll are correct, and then assume that many people still didn’t come forward, then it is safe to assume that we are talking about a huge segment of the United States population being gay. Maybe President Obama knows more than we think. Maybe he is reaching out to a much bigger part of our population than some thought before.