Thursday, May 16, 2013

The right’s defeat

Reality is catching up with the radical right: Their lies are failing as more people know and accept the truth about LGBT people. This helps explain why we are winning so often now.

As I’ve pointed out far too many times to list, the radical right uses lies, deception, distortion and defamation to attack LGBT people and our struggle for our civil and human rights. The problem the radicals now face is that mainstream people now know the extent to which the radicals have lied about reality, and polls reflect this.

A couple days ago, I mentioned a Gallup poll, and that their polls show “support for marriage equality now consistently polls above 50%”. This shows the extent to which the radical right has pretty much lost the war.

A new Gallup poll shows why they’re losing:
Currently, 47% of Americans view being gay or lesbian as a sexual orientation individuals are born with, while 33% instead believe it is due to external factors such as upbringing or environment. That 14-percentage-point gap in favor of "nature" over "nurture" is the largest Gallup has measured to date. As recently as two years ago, the public was evenly divided.
People don’t think someone should be discriminated against because of something they’re born with, even if some religions endorse discrimination. The acknowledgement that sexual orientation has a genetic component leads naturally to people supporting marriage equality.

No wonder the radical right is getting so desperate, and using ever more vile and hate-filled rhetoric: They’ve lost, they know it, and they see their power—and ability to make money—slipping through their fingers.

I found Gallup’s analysis equally as interesting as the raw results:
Compared with 2011, when Americans were equally divided on the origins of same-sex orientation, most major U.S. subgroups have shown at least a slight increase in the percentage believing same-sex preference is something a person is born with. Now, a plurality of most subgroups hold that view, except for Republicans, conservatives, and weekly church attenders.
There we have it in a nutshell: “Republicans, conservatives, and weekly church attenders” (and the first two are almost always also the third, but people who are the third are not necessarily the first two); they alone don’t accept that homosexuality is something that some people are born with. That grouping also calls the shots in the Republican Party, which explains the party’s intransigence on marriage equality, an issue where they’ve already lost, and that continues to cost the party votes, especially among the young.

So, what we have are a majority of Americans supporting marriage equality and a clear plurality accepting that homosexuals are born, not made. Why does the radical right keep fighting a war they’ve already lost?

Money and power.

By demonising LGBT people, they can raise a LOT of money. This is particularly important for those people who’d struggle to find well-paying jobs outside the anti-gay industry, but none of them want to give up a source of easy money. Power in this case mainly means controlling the Republican Party, since neither Democrats nor mainstream voters pay any attention to the radial right.

The core threat that the radical right is facing is that their entire ideology—and thus, money-making machine—is built on arguing that homosexuality is entirely a “choice”, one made by very, very naughty people who must be punished for “choosing” it. If mainstream Americans understand that gay people are born, not made, then ALL of the radicals’ arguments collapse: Since NO child can be “recruited” into homosexuality, then there’s no problem with anti-bullying campaigns in schools, gay teachers, gay scout leaders or gay parents. Their absurd, “won’t someone please think of the children” bullshit is seen as exactly that. And donations dry up.

All of this means that the radical right has a strong incentive to keep up with their lies, deception, distortion and defamation of LGBT people: Their livelihoods depend on it.

Mainstream America has already started moving on. In a few short years, these poll results will seem positively conservative as mainstream people continue to move past the radical right. The question then becomes, having failed at oppressing GLBT people, who will they next turn their fires of bigotry on?

No comments: