If you read one piece today about LGBT parenting, make it this excellent New York Times article about our demographics, which informs us, “Child rearing among same-sex couples is more common in the South than in any other region of the country.”
Yes, that’s right. Same-sex couples in Southern states such as Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi and Texas are more likely to be raising children than those on the West Coast, in New York and in New England. The NYT reporter, Sabrina Tavernise, is citing Gary Gates of the Williams Institute at UCLA, well known for its studies of LGBT demographics and economics. Gates and others have been analyzing the new data from Census 2010, and found some interesting trends. For example, as Tavernise notes, Black or Latino same-sex couples are twice as likely as white ones to be raising children, and more likely to be struggling economically.
This is a trend I’ve noted before (also citing Gates’ work). It’s good to see it getting mainstream coverage, however, as this revised view of our community has the potential to impact both public perception and public policy.
Don’t read Tavernise’s piece just for the demographics, however. Read it also for the profile of the lesbian and gay parents in Jacksonville, Florida, “home to one of the biggest populations of gay parents in the country.” (San Antonio, Texas comes in second.)