Pop Culture And Gay Rights

Submitted By agriz1224
Words: 615
Pages: 3

Ashley Grismore
Jeff Carr
10 October 2014
Pop Culture & Gay Rights How did we go from a majority of Americans opposing marriage equality, with a Supreme Court Justice comparing laws against same-sex marriage to laws against bestiality, to gay marriage being legal in over half of the U.S states? How did public opinion on gay marriage change so quickly? Some might say that people like Ellen DeGeneres and the cast of Modern Family are responsible for the growing rate of people accepting gays in society. Millions of Americans may have accepted gay individuals into their homes for the first time through their TV, radio, or some other source of entertainment. Pop culture has played a huge role in changing the face of same-sex marriage and the LGBT community for the better. The main contributor to gay exposure in American homes is the television. TV programs of all types show gay individuals and families and give other people a real connection to them. Things have changed a lot in 20 years and more gay individuals are getting the rights they deserve because of popular culture. Shows like Friends, Roxanne, Glee, Will and Grace, Grey’s Anatomy, and Modern Family, are all very influential in the discussion of same sex marriage. Characters and couples on these shows gave Americans a personal connection with gay people for possibly the first time. The effects of these shows were shown in a recent poll published by The Hollywood Reporter. The poll showed that 27 percent of respondents said gay TV shows like Glee and Modern Family pushed them to be more pro-gay marriage, while only 2 percent said the shows made them more anti-same sex marriage (Watercutter). The shows were even found to have a pro-gay marriage influence on those who claimed to be Mitt Romney voters in the weeks before the 2012 election. Another huge asset to winning gay rights though TV exposure is Ellen DeGeneres. In 1997 she came out as a lesbian on her talk show for it to be cancelled shortly after. As America became more open to the idea of gay people in society, Ellen reemerged with her TV show in later years. She married Arrested Development actress Portia De Rossi in 2008 and is now one of the most renowned lesbians in the LGBT community. By becoming “The Lesbian Next Door”, she played a huge role in effecting female voters especially. Other than through the TV, pop culture is also