A new poll shows that a strong majority of U.S. military personnel are comfortable with gay people. The poll, by Zogby International and the Michael D. Palm Center at the University of California, Santa Barbara, reveals that 73% of those in the military are personally comfortable with lesbians and gays and that 23% say they know someone in their unit who is gay or lesbian, including 21% serving in combat units.
“Today’s poll is one more nail in the coffin of ‘don’t ask, don’t tell,’ ” said C. Dixon Osburn, executive director of Servicemembers Legal Defense Network, in a statement on Tuesday, when the poll results were released. “Those who defend the law have argued that openly gay personnel harm military readiness. This research highlights the absurdity of that hypothesis.”
The poll surveyed 545 soldiers who served in Iraq and Afghanistan.