|The commentary to the
right is by Ronald L. Donaghe. For a complete list of his works go to
his Official Web Site.
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this is interesting. You can see the whole
and other related Gallup Poll results at 365Gay.
some time, the religious right, which has a vested interest in
the importance of gay people in our society claims that gays and
make up less than 2% of the general population. And even more
to their claim is that being homosexual is a chosen "lifestyle."
In the same article, another Gallup Poll recently conducted says that
of respondents labeled themselves as gay or lesbian.
What is going on here? I don't believe that the actual percentage of
lesbians, bi-sexuals, and transgendered individuals in society has
(no matter what that percentage might really be), but that Americans'
in general have shifted as gay issues have become increasingly more
in the public consciousness. And I'll just bet that members of the
right are not pleased. What this shift of perception means to me is
we glbt people are winning the PR battle...somehow, even though I doubt
most glbt persons are aware of consciously being engaged in such a
But I know I am. By being "out" at home among my family members
sisters, parents, aunts, uncles, cousins) and out at work, and of
out in my writing and on the internet, I have been consciously
to be an example of a gay man. And every time we as a group or
decide to participate in "coming out day" or to simply be "out" we are
to the PR effort.
Of course there is a growing (seemingly) backlash as the desperate
of glbt persons become alarmed that we are everywhere--or as the Save
Children Campaign of the late 1970s bemoaned: "It used to be the love
dared not speak its name. Now it's the love that won't shut up!"
Which is fine with me. I can't help but feel happy that Americans'
are shifting in favor of thinking perhaps that gays are everywhere.
And as the second poll indicated that more of us are willing to
ourselves as gay or lesbian. What effects will this shift in thinking
in the coming years? I would hope that eventually, some form of
will be made legal for glbt persons, that companies will offer
benefits to the same-sex partners of their employees, that schools will
increasingly more room for student glbt organizations, that the Boy
and other such organizations will drop their fruitless (no pun
anti-gay policies, that churches will accept glbt members, that the
industry will embrace the notion that glbt persons be more fully
In the meantime, gays, lesbians, bi-sexuals, and transgendered persons
continue their uphill battle for visibility. Hey... I just had a
Maybe this is a kind of gay agenda after all.
Ronald L. Donaghe
Feel free to disseminate this opinion piece freely, but please give
as I have done by mentioning the source of the 365gay article, above.