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Most LGBTI Americans welcome police at Pride parades

Most LGBTI Americans welcome police at Pride parades

Member of the Minneapolis Police Department at Twin Cities Pride in 2017

A new survey reveals most LGBTI Americans are welcoming of police and other groups, such as corporations, at annual Pride parades.

BuzzFeed News and Whitman Insight Strategies conducted the survey from 5-10 June, speaking to 801 LGBTI people in the US. Most of the respondents identified as bisexual (46%). Gay and lesbian respondents were next, at 29 and 17%, respectively. Finally, 7% of respondents identified as transgender and nonbinary, respectively.

The survey asked a broad range of questions, including ones about Pride, gay icons, and the Pride flag.

Pride parades should be inclusive and open

Police at pride has become a controversial and heated debate in the LGBTI community.

Numerous cities have declared police in uniform are not welcome at their Pride parades, such as Portland and Sacramento. Based on this survey, however, a majority of LGBTI Americans — 79% — said police should be welcome. This includes cops marching in the parade.

The survey did not specify if the question specifically meant police in uniform, or in general.

Results of question about police at Pride
Results of question about police at Pride | Photo: BUzzFeed News

The survey also found 7 in 10 respondents believe police sometimes discriminate against LGBTI people.

Despite this belief, only 8% said police should absolutely not be allowed to participate at Pride events, such as parades.

This welcoming attitudes towards Pride events extended to groups beyond police. A majority said both corporations (76%) and kink groups (72%) should be able to participate as well. People who responded no unequivocally were equal or lesser to 1 in 10.

Results of question about corportations Pride
Results of question about corportations Pride | Photo: BuzzFeed News

People’s critiques of kink groups present at Pride events often offer family and children as the reasoning for the critiques.

The respondents of this survey, however, also said families with children should be allowed and welcomed. Specifically, 87% said they should be present, even alongside the kink groups.

Chart showing results about kink groups at Pride
Chart showing results about kink groups at Pride | Photo: BuzzFeed News

Teaching LGBTI history — and having diversity

Another component of the survey included questions on diversity and history.

Less than half (45%) said they attended a Pride event this year (or had plans to), but an overwhelming 90% also responded they believe Pride advances LGBTI equality.

Only a little over half (54%) said they knowledge of the Stonewall Riots, but tellingly, 89% said they believed LGBTI history should be taught in schools.

How inclusive lessons or the promotion of LGBTI rights will be remains to be seen, as most respondents (56%) said they do not approve of adding black and brown stripes to the Pride flag to acknowledge LGBTI people of color.

Chart about making the Pride flag more inclusive
Chart about making the Pride flag more inclusive | Photo: BuzzFeed News

Is Taylor Swift a gay icon?

Not according to this survey.

Only 9% of respondents classified her as a gay icon — three points above the Babadook.

Ellen DeGeneres was the clear winner, with 78% of LGBTI people saying she’s a gay icon. Figures like RuPaul (65%), Lady Gaga (53%), Cher (40%), and Madonna (36%) followed.

Finally, a slight majority of people (53%) also believe public figures have a responsibility to come out if they identify as LGBTI.

See also

71% of Americans in favor of trans military personnel, survey finds

Gay, lesbian, and bisexual Americans more critical of churches than straight counterparts

Armed Neo-Nazi group disrupts Detroit Pride with police escorts