Do the Americans have a good knowledge of “what it means to be transgender”? So simple. Less than half of the population knows.
A youGovreport says that only about 38 per cent understood what it means for “someone to be transgender”. The report mentions that 65 year and older Americans are unlikely to say they have a good understanding. It also noted that a majority of both Democrats and Republicans say they do not have a very good understanding of transgender identity. It was only the community of gay, lesbian, or bisexual who knew the real meaning of transgender
In a response to the question, “What do you think it means to be transgender? Many people mentioned being “born,” “assigned to, or trapped in a wrong. different, or opposite gender or sex than the one a person is assigned at birth. Some people alluded to a “feeling,” “emotion,” or sense of identity. Others mentioned changes in the way someone dresses and a handful referred to medical treatments such as taking hormones or getting surgery. Some mistook being transgender as being “gay” or associated it with being confused about their sexuality.
LACK OF PERSONAL CONNECTION
The YouGov report points out that the lesser knowledge about transgender reflected a lack of personal connection to people who are transgender. Less than one-third of Americans (31%) report knowing someone who is transgender, including themselves, a family member, a close friend, or an acquaintance. This is slightly higher than the share who reported knowing someone on similar polls conducted in 2021 (27%), 2020 (277), and 2015 (19%). Nearly one in four Americans who identify as gay, lesbian, or bisexual also say they have a close friend who is transgender, a far higher share than the public overall.
One in three Americans say the society has not gone far enough in accepting transgender. A majority of Democrats say society has not gone far enough, while the majority of Republicans say it has gone too far.
Majority of the Americans agree that transgender people face at least some discrimination in the country. The YouGov survey noted that 74 per cent was of this opinion. A majority of both Democrats and Republicans acknowledge discrimination, though Democrats are far more likely than Republicans to say there is a lot” rather than a little” discrimination. There is little difference by age on perceptions of extent of discrimination against people who are transgender.
Those who know someone who is transgender are more likely to say there is a lot of discrimination than those who don’t. Two in three Americans also oppose allowing employers to fire or refuse to hire someone for being transgender, including a majority of Democrats (76%) and Republicans (56%). The share who oppo se allowing employees to be fired for this reason has increased slightly since we asked a similar question in 2019. And 58% of Americans – including 71% of Democrats but just 48% of Republicans – oppose allowing healthInsurance companies to refuse to pay for healthcare services for people who are transgender.
Half of Americans support allowing transgender people to serve in the military, while one in three oppose their service. A comparable share supported the ban when YouGov posed this question in a similar way in 2017 and 2019.