More Americans than ever identify as LGBTQ, poll finds

By | February 25, 2021

America is record-breakingly gay, a new survey has found. 

Gallup’s latest update on the percentages of US adults who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender found the number to be up 1.1 percent since Gallup’s last update in 2017. 

According to Gallup’s new survey, released Wednesday, 5.6 percent of US adults — or 18 million people — are estimated to identify as LGBTQ, with a majority (54.6 percent) identifying as bisexual, a quarter (24.5 percent) as gay, 11.7 percent as lesbian and 11.3 percent as transgender. 

LGBTQ identification fell intensely along certain demographic lines, especially by age. While 15.9 percent of Generation Z — defined as those who are currently 18 to 23 years old — identified as LGBTQ, only 2 percent of people 56 and older did. Women were also significantly more likely to identify as LGBTQ than men (6.4 percent vs. 4.9 percent), and Democrats were also far more queer (6.5 percent) than Republicans (1.7 percent). In terms of college graduates vs. nongraduates, however, surveyors found no meaningful difference (5.6 percent vs. 5.7 percent). 

Many LGBTQ advocates believe the intense age discrepancy can be attributed to the massive steps society has taken away from homophobic stigma in recent years, a shift that has been significantly helped by high-profile celebrities including Eddie Izzard and Elliot Page publicly announcing that they respectively identify as gender fluid and transgender.

“I have had conversations with many older LGBTQ people who break down in tears when they share their coming-out stories of decades ago – heart-wrenching stories of family rejection, losing parents, losing siblings, losing jobs,” advocate Ineke Mushovic told USA Today.  “Older generations grew up during those times when being LGBTQ could land you in jail, or alone or jobless.”

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Today’s youth, on the other hand, “haven’t experienced this level of fear where often being in the closet felt less like a choice and more like a survival mechanism,” Mushovic said. 

gallup-poll-lgbtq
Many advocates believe the increase in people identifying as LGBTQ is a result of a societal shift away from stigma and towards sexual equality.
Gallup

Living | New York Post