Pew LGBT Survey: It Got Better

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Photo: SERGEI SUPINSKY/AFP/Getty Images

Ninety-two percent of America’s gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender adults say the world has become a more tolerant place for them in the past decade, according to a fascinating Pew survey of LGBT Americans. The same number expect it to get even more accepting in the next ten years. But it’s still bad: 39 percent had been rejected by a family member or close friend because of their sexual orientation or gender identity, and 21 percent had been treated unfairly by an employer. A staggering 30 percent have been physically attacked or threatened.

In terms of LGBT milestones, 12 is the median age at which respondents realized they might not be straight, they were sure about it at 17, and they came out at 20. Gay men beat lesbians and bisexuals out of the closet, and a greater percentage of respondents had come out to their mom than to their dad. Compared to the general public, LGBT respondents are: more liberal, less religious, less happy with their lives, and happier with the direction of the country. “They are also more likely to perceive discrimination not just against themselves but also against other groups with a legacy of discrimination.”