Gay Parents More Accepted Than Single Moms

BY Advocate.com Editors

March 15 2011 2:35 PM ET

A new survey shows that Americans tend to be more accepting of gay and lesbian couples raising children than single parents.

One third of Americans say they are comfortable with a variety of family situations, according to a study by the Pew Research Center. That group is called "acceptors." Another third, called "skeptics" by researchers, have mixed views on nontraditional family structures. The final third group, known as "rejectors," believe nontraditional families can have a negative impact on society.

The majority of acceptors and skeptics say that families headed by gay and lesbian parents are an acceptable, if not a positive, asset to society. The view on single mothers, however, is quite polarized. Ninety-eight percent of acceptors think women can raise children alone, but 99% of skeptics and 98% of rejectors believe it's bad for society. The survey did not ask about single fathers.

Katherine Stamps Mitchell, a professor at Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge, told MSNBC that the gay and lesbian parents are favored because they're providing a two-parent family, as opposed to a single-parent family. She added that media helps with acceptance of gay and lesbian couples and families.

“You’re seeing gay families more and more on TV in shows like Modern Family and in movies like The Kids Are All Right,” Stamps Mitchell said.





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