Arizona bill sparks debate about religious objections to gay marriage
The bill would allow business owners to cite religious beliefs as a reason for denying services – including to same-sex couples – without fear of legal retribution.
More hate crimes motivated by victims’ ethnicity
In about half of the cases of reported hate crimes, victims believed their ethnic background motivated the offender.
Support for death penalty drops among Americans
More than half of Americans favor the death penalty for persons convicted of murder, down from 78% in 1996.
Gay rights in Russia and the former Soviet republics
The upcoming Winter Olympic Games in Sochi have cast a spotlight on a recently-enacted Russian law banning the distribution of gay “propaganda” to minors. However, among the 15 countries that used to comprise the Soviet Union, Russia is not the only state to restrict LGBT rights.
Russia’s moral barometer: Homosexuality unacceptable, but drinking, less so
Nearly three-quarters of the Russian population (72%) think that homosexuality is morally unacceptable, with only 18% saying it is acceptable or not a moral issue.
As 2014 brings new state laws, a look at public opinion on the issues
Every new year means adding thousands of new state laws to the books. This year’s wide range includes everything from tanning bed age limits (Illinois), to a new ban on selling shark fins (Delaware). While most new laws represent incremental change, sometimes state laws can also signal broader movement on a public policy issue or […]
Obama had strong support from LGBT adults even before stance on Sochi Olympics
President Obama said the inclusion of openly gay athletes in the U.S. delegation to the Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia underscores American values. Obama and his administration had been viewed positively by LGBT Americans even before this most recent expression of support for LGBT rights.
Chart of the Week: Most new gun laws since Newtown ease restrictions
In the year since the Newtown school shootings, most new state gun laws have loosened rather than tightened restrictions.
Eastern and Western Europe divided over gay marriage, homosexuality
Recent developments in Croatia and Scotland highlight a stark divide between Eastern and Western Europe on the topic of same-sex marriage.
A year after Newtown, little change in public opinion on guns
After the horrific shootings at an elementary school in Newtown, Conn., a year ago claiming the lives of 20 children and six adults, there was a sense in the country – especially among gun-control supporters — that the tragedy would be different from similar ones in the past and push the nation to action. But ultimately, a sustained change in public opinion did not materialize, and a bill to tighten gun laws died in the Senate.