AMSA Board Member Mark Justad: Men’s Changing Attitudes on Sexuality
As noted in the NYTimes and elsewhere, a recent Gallup poll on Americans’ take on the moral acceptability of gay and lesbian relations indicates that our collective attitudes are changing.
AMSA members may be most interested in noting that men’s attitudes have changed significantly in just the last few years. According to the poll, 62% of men 18-49 years of age now find gay and lesbian relations morally acceptable, up from 42% just four years ago. 44% of men 50 and older hold this same attitude, up from 35% in 2006. Women’s attitudes are similar (59% for the 18-49 category, 43% for women 50 and older) but perhaps somewhat surprisingly are just below the overall percentages of men (all men are at 53%, all women at 51%).
AMSA members and friends are familiar with the sustained effort to challenge homophobia in men’s lives and to identify and eliminate the influence of the many anti-gay attitudes often embedded in normative understandings of masculinity. Although this is just one poll (and, of course, its a poll) even this kind of evidence is good news for those involved in trying to revision masculinities in positive and egalitarian terms. In short, this seems like good news to me.