Offsetting Behaviour has a post about a curious phenomenon.
Americans surveyed in 2011 substantially overestimated the proportion of Americans identifying as homosexual. Where most estimates reckon about 3.5% of the population are homosexual, Americans surveyed thought that somewhere between 20-25% of the population are gay or lesbian.
The numbers are bizarrely high, for all groups.
It’s all very odd really. Given that the most common myth (well, that I’d ever heard) is that gays make up 10% of the population, and the truth is that they’re about a third of that, you’d think that the average would be somewhere in the middle. Certainly, I’d have not been surprised in the slightest to find figures approaching 15% – which while completely wrong is still at least explainable.
Instead, many groups are approaching an estimate that is ten times the actual figure. Interestingly, some of those are those who generally support the gay agenda. That makes sense if you consider that they seem to think marriage equality is an important issue – when the actual number of people who’s lives are changed by it is vanishingly small.
But given the widespread nature of the high estimation, I can’t think of anything that really explains this well. However, one thing is for sure – homosexuality is one very touchy political issue.