More people identify as LGBTQ. Increased visibility educates non-LGBTQ people, but it also comes with a purported price, according to GLAAD’s annual Accelerating Acceptance Study out Wednesday.
This report shows that 43 percent of non-LGBTQ individuals believe gender does not only exist in male or female. That’s up from 38% who thought it did in 2020. Non-LGBTQs also expect 81% that transgender and nonbinary people will be as well known in daily life as lesbian and gay people.
GLAAD CEO Sarah Kate Ellis said that the community keeps growing and there is a lot of acceptance. “We’re seeing that non-LGBTQ Americans are changing the definition of gender. A poll earlier this year found that 5.6% of adults in the U.S. identify as LGBTQ – a record.
However, not everyone is able to see the whole picture. These non-LGBTQ individuals admit that they’re confused about the various terms being used to define people from the LGBTQ community. Ellis says this requires education – the purpose of GLAAD’s work.
“We know when people meet us and connect, or even meet us through a television or now a phone screen, it builds understanding which builds acceptance,” Ellis says.
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GLAAD’s research also found that six in 10 people said they faced discrimination based on their sexual orientation and gender identity – an increase of 13% from last year.
Ellis states that visibility can be a double-edged sword. “As our community continues to grow and become more visible, we’re seeing greater acceptance in some areas, and then we are seeing these growing challenges for acceptance in others, which are then turning into discrimination and hate.”
Ellis claims that this is on top of Trump’s four-year-old anti-LGBTQ administration and the current anti-trans legislation. In real life, such hostility can be seen.
Ellis states that anti-trans legislation is a solution to problems that do not exist. Ellis says that there are no issues to address which we should be legislating against.
Who is most likely to suffer the worst consequences? Kids. “It’s creating confusion for so many people, which creates an unaccepting environment, hands down, and puts targets squarely on the backs of most of our youth in our community, (especially) our trans youth,” Ellis says.
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GLAAD ran the Accelerating Acceptance study online be January 2021 and included a national sample of 2,517 U.S. adults.
In addition to the report, GLAAD recently launched its Social Media Safety Index, which monitors social media dangers for LGBTQ people; the Visibility Project, which advocates for LGBTQ inclusion in advertising; a partnership with Getty Images on its transgender image guidelines; and the Local Media Accountability Index – U.S. South, which aims to curb misinformation in reporting on LGBTQ and HIV topics.
Ellis states that this latest study shows “acceptance figures in the Southlag.” “It’s significant.”
After Dave Chappelle’s Netflix transphobic Netflix special, there has been a lot of resistance to the acceptance of transgender people.
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It tried to compare the rate of civil rights achieved by LGBTQ people and those won for by Blacks. Chappelle repeatedly focused on jokes that targeted the trans community, doubling down on criticism that his sets punch down on the most vulnerable.
Ellis stated that “What the Netflix and Chappelle responses show is that we still stand against an entertainment industry which’s not equally for LGBTQ people of colour, especially trans people,”
GLAAD, on the other hand, says that it is treating it as a time of transformation and an occasion to collaborate with the community, particularly the comedy community.
It is not surprising that celebrities can have a significant impact on LGBTQ youth. Research from The Trevor Project found that more than 80 percent of LGBTQ youth believe celebrities are able to positively influence their feelings about their LGBTQ identities. More and more celebrities have embraced their gender identities recently, too: Just look at Sam Smith, Elliot Page, Demi Lovato and Emma Corrin.
It also always helps to have affirming political leadership. During the Trump administration, GLAAD saw comfortability with queer people dip in its Accelerating Acceptance reports. Comfortability stabilised this year: 29% said that they would or were “very” or somewhat uncomfortable hearing from a LGBTQ family member, as opposed to 30% last.
She said, “That shows power and importance of leadership.”
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