Views on same sex marriage changing

6:23 PM, Mar 27, 2013   |    comments
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PORTLAND, Maine (NEWS CENTER) - While the older generation tends to hold onto traditions more tightly, the younger generation appears more open to change and that is helping same sex marriage gain more acceptance.

It was the voice of that younger generation that helped turn the tide for same sex marriage from a six-percentage point loss in 2009, to a six-percentage point win last year.

Will and Arlene Brewster grew up in a time when gay marriage wasn't even on the radar. The general thought was that it was wrong and it would never be something that was legalized.

"I think a lot of that is cultural, some of it is religious and they look to scripture", said Will Brewster, a retired Episcopal minister.

Religiously speaking, marriage was between a man and a woman, end of story.

"I don't think young people believe that any more, I don't think I believe that any more, I know I don't," said his wife Arlene.

Will and Arlene became strong supporters of same sex marriage after learning that their son is gay. While members of their own generation may still struggle with this issue, they have come to see how the younger generation views the subject much differently.

"My own generation there were some difficulties with that, but our children and their friends have no issue with it at all," Will said.

David Farmer was the communications director of the successful campaign that legalized same sex marriage. He says it appears the generational gap on this issue is closing.

"Younger people are much more supportive of allowing same sex couples to marry. But what we've seen in Maine and I think it's being replicated across the country is growing acceptance across demographic groups", Farmer said.

Farmer said besides strong support from younger voters the measure also needed support from many voters who had a change of heart since the 2009 vote that repealed same sex marriage in Maine.


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