To the editor:
While the title of your July 14/15, 2007 lead article, “Catholics decry same-sex bill,” reflects the positions of institutional Church leaders, polls indicate that is not true of many Catholics in the pews.
A May 2007 Gallup poll reported that 46 percent of respondents said marriages between same-sex couples should be as legally valid as traditional marriages. Also, a New York poll, conducted by Siena College in May 2007, reported that 43 percent of respondents support the same-sex marriage bill in New York, and a solid majority of those under age 55 support the bill. Though these polls did not break out results by religious affiliation, polls that do consistently report no significant differences in the attitudes of Catholics and Protestants with regard to questions about homosexuality. These and other polls show that many Catholics do, in fact, support the New York state same-sex marriage bill.
Reasons why many Catholics are supportive include: their support for civil rights that flows from their grounding in the Catholic social justice tradition; an understanding that civil same-sex marriage is a question of whether it is good for civil society, not whether it is sacramental or not; and, perhaps most importantly, that they have come to know, respect, and love many lesbian and gay couples and see their relationships and families as beneficial to society and deserving of governmental support.
Casey & Mary Ellen Lopata
239 Highland Parkway
EDITOR’S NOTE: The headline was stated in standard “headlinese.” Collective headline subjects should never be interpreted to comprise all members of a group unless that is specifically stated.