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The numbers are in and better than ever

The National Opinion Research Center at the University of Chicago has released survey findings that show Americans are more accepting of homosexuality than ever before. The survey, which is done every second year, showed that for the first time in history the majority of Americans approve of same-sex marriage. Forty-six percent of Americans are pro gay-marriage versus 40 percent who are against it. That is a 35-percent increase since 1988, when only 11 percent of the American public supported same-sex unions. 

The survey also showed that young people were much more supportive, with 70 percent of those under 30 years old in support of gay rights, compared to 27-percent approval from those over the age of 70. 

Eighty-six percent of the American public believe gays have the right to speak in front of a public audience, and 84 percent agree they have a right to teach at colleges and universities.

The study showed that change in America's perception of homosexuality began in the '80s. In 1987, 75 percent of the American public thought that same-sex relations were "always wrong." That number has steadily decreased ever since, with 43 percent of the public still holding that view in 2010.

The US Census Bureau estimates that 131,279 same-sex American couples are married, with six states having legalized gay marriage and 39 states having specific bans against it. 

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