You win some, you lose some, and try as you might, sometimes you’re just not as gay as the next guy. All of gay Texas feels it as an LGBT equality study maps, ranks and puts the state soundly in the bottom.
You already knew the South sucks on marriage), and it’s no better in HIV infection rates. The long and familiarly-grouped swath of states from Texas all the way to Georgia comes together for another fail, this time for their lack of LGBT-supportive laws. In the latest study, the South has a little company from states further north.
The study conducted by the Movement Advancement Project, a gay think tank, looked at municipal and statewide laws across all 50 states and the District of Columbia. Points were given for pro-LGBT laws and ordinances, and points were taken away for laws that are hostile to those residents in areas of healthcare, schools, discrimination protections, and adoption and parenting, and marriage recognition. Sorry, no points for a packed Pride parade (top photo).
Texas earned a negative score at -1.5 points, or 14th worst in the nation. The usual suspects of our Southern sisters make up the other negative-scoring states, as well as a few Midwestern neighbors like Kansas, Missouri and the Dakotas. Bringing up the rear as bottoms in equality are Tennessee (-5), Michigan (-5), Alabama (-5) and Louisiana (-6). The 15 negative-scoring states represent 29 percent of the country’s LGBT population, the study purports.
For comparison, top-ranked California earned a 29.25 score. The other tops of equality in the U.S. include Oregon (28.5) Washington, D.C. (27.5), Vermont (24.5) Washington state (24.5), New Jersey (24.5), and Massachusetts (24.5). Researchers say that the 12 high-equality states (photo, in dark green, scores over 18) represent 39 percent of LGBTs in the U.S.
Specifics on Texas paint an even clearer picture. Check out the graphics below for explicit details on just how friendly (and not-so-friendly) things are right here at home.
Before you get too dejected, it could be worse. Houston's HERO helped Texas out of the worst of the worst states, and the state legislature failed to pass any of 20 anti-LGBT proposals, including this anti-gay marriage one, which would have pushed Texas deeper into the negative scores. Of course, it could be much better too. Republicans did take a non-binding swipe of disapproval at marriage in the end, even if one GOP Houston lawmaker refused to sign it.