So, I'm reading the Washington Post today about Meredith Baxter. You know? The mom from that 80s hit, Family Ties. Turns out, she's a Lesbyterian. That isn't much of a news item or really what I want to talk about. What I want to talk about is the poll at the end of a related blog entry titled "Coming Out at Mid-life" about Ms. Baxter's coming out.
The WaPo offers the following choices:
A) Yes. She had cultivated such a straight image over the years, I found the news jarring.
B) No. I really don't think other people's sexual orientation is any of my business, so this didn't faze me.
C) Who is Meredith Baxter?
Seems 8% are shocked by this. They're probably the same 8% who make up part of the 10% of the population who are estimated to be GLBTIQ and are all in the closet themselves. Eighteen percent of respondents had no clue who Meredith Baxter is. They were probably born after 1986, so they're forgiven. The remainder--74%--said they don't care one way or the other and they weren't fazed.
If that's the case, folks, then answer me these, please: first, if 74%--nearly 3/4 of those polled--don't care, then why do we still have Don't Ask, Don't Tell? And second, if this is in fact the case, why don't we have equal rights for GLBTIQ citizens and why do we have to keep fighting for basic civil rights? Why don't your poll answers match your voting record or your actions?
If you can answer both of those questions with more than a "Some of my best friends are gay, but NIMBY" answer, I welcome your response.
Photo source: Screen shot from my MacBook.