BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - A 2015 Louisiana Survey shows a continued slow trend toward acceptance of same-sex marriage and legalization of marijuana for personal use.
Support in Louisiana for legally recognizing same-sex marriages lags significantly behind national opinion. However, the lead that opponents hold over supporters has shrunk by nearly half over the past two years, according to Louisiana Survey.
In 2013 opponents to same-sex marriage outnumbered supporters by 17 percentage points, but the gap has shrunk to just nine points. Opinion on the legalization of marijuana for personal use follows the same pattern, according to the survey. Support for legalization continues to lag behind opposition but the gap has narrowed by half over the past two years.
"The trends are modest and unfolding fairly slowly, but it appears Louisiana is heading toward greater acceptance ion these social issues," said Michael Henderson, research director of PPRL. "Age is a factor here. Younger Louisiana adults support allowing same-sex couples to marry, support legalizing marijuana for personal use, and support legalizing marijuana for medical use."
Residents between the ages of 18 and 29 are the only age group that has 59 percent favoring legal recognition for same-sex marriages and 68 percent favoring legalization of marijuana for personal use.
Legalization of marijuana for medical use, however, remains popular, with support from 60 percent of respondents.
Even if marijuana remains illegal, 67 percent of the pubic says that people convicted of possessing small amounts should not serve jail time. This share jumps to 79 percent when people are told how much it costs to incarcerate individuals convicted of marijuana possession.
To read the full survey, click here: www.survey.lsu.edu.
The Louisiana Survey is conducted on an annual basis by LSU's Public Policy Research Lab, or PPRL, and sponsored by the Manship School of Mass Communication's Reilly Center for Media and Public affairs to understand the opinions of Louisiana residents and share those opinions with Louisiana law makers.