Survey Finds That Americans’ View of Family Changing; Gay Couples Count

GayMarriage.jpgA Newsweek report on the latest results from the Constructing the Family Surveys shows that for the first time, a majority of Americans (52 percent) support gay marriage and 68 percent believe that gays with children qualify as families.

Four universities launched the survey, which monitors Americans’ opinions on what constitutes a family, in 2003. At that time, about 41 percent of those surveyed said they supported gay marriage and 53 percent agreed that a couple of the same sex with children constituted a family. The latest findings are from the 2010 survey and are included in a new book entitled, Counted Out: Same-Sex Relations and Americans’ Definitions of Family.

Researchers say that a number of societal shifts have accelerated the rate of change in Americans’ opinions about gay marriage and family, including the fact that homosexuals – including several notable celebrities — have become more open about their sexual orientation. In addition, gay couples, friends and families are more prevalent on TV and the ability for gays to marry in several states has contributed to an increased acceptance by Americans.

The research team also found that there has been a profound shift in what Americans consider to be the determinant of a person’s sexual orientation. More than 60 percent now say that homosexuality is either genetic or “God’s will.”

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