Wednesday, January 08, 2014

It starts with understanding

The video above was released late last year by Gay Christian Network and is about a study they did into Christian—apparently mostly conservative Christian—attitudes towards LGBT people. While they labelled the results “shocking”, I didn’t find any surprises—in fact, most of this has been demonstrated by other studies. Even so, this presentation is very useful.

Videos with infographics help make complex data more easily understandable, and this video does that. It presents a lot of numbers, but it makes it easier to understand. So, the content of this video is more accessible to more people than are survey results—the sort of thing I routinely read.

In the YouTube description, GCN says the survey has limitations:
“…even though we surveyed thousands of people, this wasn't a random sample, so we can't extrapolate from these statistics to the entire country or world. Keep in mind, too, that these statistics only focus on a subset of Christians.”
That’s true, but it isn’t just that “the responses we got are pretty common in our experience”, it’s that it mirrors existing studies. I think that the fact that their results are similar to other studies and surveys means that their conclusion that we need to find ways to stop speaking past each other is on solid ground (the GCN site has more about the survey and its limitations).

Personally, I think anything that helps people to understand their differences is a good thing. With some luck, and a lot of determination, we might actually find a way to start talk to each other, rather than past each other. But it all starts with understanding, and this video helps.

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