Wednesday, April 13, 2005

The Mainstream View

Sports Illustrated is not, to my knowledge, a publication known for taking outspoken stands in favor of progressive political causes. In fact, if I were to try to name a publication that plays to the non-political "mainstream" in the United States, Sports Illustrated would be a good candidate.
That is why its newly posted survey on attitudes towards homosexuality in sports is particularly interesting. The survey shows a distinct tolerance of homosexuality, in both sports and society. A minority (44 percent) consider homosexuality a sin, and 59 percent believe homosexuals can be as good parents as heterosexuals. Large majorities express support for homosexuals in sports, 61 percent say homosexuality should be accepted by society and 77 percent believe society should put no restrictions on private sexual activity between consenting adults.
I'm surprised the numbers are this big, and pleased that the real mainstream of U.S. society is so tolerant. It's good to see that Americans in general recognize that everyone is entitled to both a measure of happiness and to equal treatment.
It's also interesting that the majority resoundingly rejects stereotyping in answer to questions such as whether lesbians make better athletes than straight women.
Yes, a majority still said that they believe homosexual marriage is in conflict with their religion, but there is actually no question that directly addresses whether they would support homosexual marriage as a matter of law. Given the answers to the questions the survey did ask, that answer might be surprising.
Anyway -- let's not let the rhetoric of the Republican Party and the religious ideologues that drive them fool us. Americans are tolerant. That is the mainstream position.
I hope that this survey gets the attention from the MSM that it deserves. It should -- it was commissioned by their own.
Americans believe in fair play. It is what we are about as a nation.
We must never lose sight of that.