Take Autostraddle’s Politics Survey: We Want Your Queer Opinions

Autostraddle is conducting a US politics survey, and we want to hear from you!
What are the political issues in the US you are most concerned about? What are your priorities for securing LGBTQ+ rights? And if it were up to you, dear reader – of any citizenship, living in any country – who would you vote for in the US presidential primary elections?

This information will allow us to understand our community better, which also means that the world will understand our community better. As you may know, Out recently published results from a poll of LGBTQ+ voters. We’re excited to expand on that and learn more about the issues facing LGBTQ+ women, nonbinary and other trans people specifically, because the LGBTQ+ community isn’t exactly a political monolith.

The survey focuses on the US in order to keep it manageable. Yes, I know the world is a much bigger place, and some day I dream of learning about this community’s perspective on global issues. But that day is not today. Even if you have not been tuning into to the variety show that is the current US political scene, this survey is STILL FOR YOU! Tell us about the issues you care about! Tell us about your political engagement! Tell us about the politics of the place you live and the place you came from!

A lot of questions on the survey come from polls conducted nationally in the US. We indicate the poll at the beginning of the question when applicable. We’re doing this so we can provide you with meaningful information about how our community compares to the US nationally. For instance, while it might be cool to know that 40% of LGBTQ+ women and nonbinary people own a cat that number really takes a whole other meaning when we find out that only 23% of people surveyed in 22 countries do. So, same idea here.

One of the drawbacks of relying on national polls is they tend to use language that leaves something to be desired. (One poll I found, not used in our survey, asked respondents “How important are gay rights to you?” No comment on that.) Regardless of how the questions are asked, I’m committed to writing about these results using language that is inclusive. But, we do still need to ask the questions in the same way, unfortunately, in order to make clean comparisons.

So take the survey! Our testers said it took anywhere between 15 and 30 minutes to complete!

CLICK HERE TO TAKE THE SURVEY!

Himani has written 2 articles for us.

33 Comments

  1. Just want to say thank you for using the phrasing “members of the immediate family you grew up with” instead of biological family — as someone who is both adopted and queer, it’s a little thing that makes me feel better and is more accurate.

    • I really appreciate your sharing that! In a previous life, I worked in a job where I felt like I had to argue about the importance of these nuances in language (and I often lost those arguments). It’s so incredibly valuable to me hear that this mattered to you.

  2. Thanks for taking the time to do this! And I appreciate your explanation of why certain questions are phrased the way they are (and providing sources) – some of the phrasing is pretty terrible!

    But I totally see the value in comparing “apples to apples” when examining our community’s responses vs those of the general population. Interested to see the results!

  3. I think the “How do you define….” portions of the “Voting Rights” section may be improperly coded so they’re showing up as a selection option (so I can’t select my choice and fill that out) rather than a subsection. Love the survey!

  4. So, whilst we’re all here discussing politics, anyone got an opinion on whether I should vote SNP or Labour in the UK general election? My first GE in Scotland and it feels like a whole new kettle of fish compared with voting in England or Wales.

    • Very much depends on your constituency! Scotland has some marginal AF seats so it’s gonna be a nail biter. In my area, it’s pretty much SNP vs Tories and the 2017 election was incredibly tight. So I’m voting SNP because my top priority this election is telling the Tories to fuck off, essentially. In a way it’s kind of nice to have it boiled down to that simple choice between goodies and baddies, but it’s also incredibly frustrating because it means I’m not able to factor any nuance in my political opinions into my vote.

      I think the main huge difference between an SNP vote and a Labour vote, where you have the choice, is whether you want to declare your support for IndyRef2 (SNP) or not (Labour). And then I would say it would probably be a good shout to consider your personal feelings on JCorbz and the Labour crew and whether or not you want them in Number 10 – a good showing from Labour in Scotland would certainly boost their chances of forming a majority down in Westminster. If the SNP win back some more seats up here, it may then be harder for either of the big parties to come out of this with a convincing majority – so does that risk allowing the Tories to sneak back in to power and completely ignore the SNP anyway, ahahaha so great the system is perfect.

      I’d be so interested to hear more about how it feels different up here, and why you think that might be? I don’t really get to talk about politics very often so this is cool, thanks for starting the conversation :)

      • Thank you pals! So I’m not against a tactical vote. And I’m ambivalent to an independence referendum. I’ve lived here 3 years (but voted in England during 2017) and basically don’t feel like I need a strong opinion about Scottish independence. But I do feel like SNP only fight to protect rights for Scottish people, which I love as I live and work in Scotland. But it does leave the tories in charge of England, where my family all live, and where the changing tides of the NHS will be decided imo. Basically I like what the snp do in Scotland but I want it for England, wales and NI too. And voting SNP feels like it could be contributing to the tories maintaining power. And I am so not down for that! My constituency I think is either labour or SNP, with an SNP in power currently. But idk. I like so much of what the SNP do! But I don’t want to leave vulnerable people behind just because they live south of the border.

        Anyway, politics.

        • What have the results been in your area over recent local/national elections? I know that’s not a guarantee but you might get some kind of idea as to which ways the winds blowing. Also are you surrounded by Nationalists, or not? If you don’t mind a tactical vote then I’d jump to whatever seems likeliest. If on the day you change your mind, then don’t stress about it. You’re voting, which is HUGELY important, you’re doing your best to work out who for and why, and you’re not just doing it in your own interests. I don’t think there’s a ”wrong” outcome when you’re going on those bases :)

        • Is a tactical vote the same as what we call a strategic vote here in Canada, where you vote for a party in the hopes of keeping out a worse one, rather than who you’d most like to vote for? Because I have thoughts on that as someone who used to vote strategically but refuses to now, and I’d be happy to share them but I’m not entirely sure if they apply to your situation.

          • Well, a few years back we had a pretty crucial election here after being stuck with basically our version of the Republican party for ten years. I got fully on board with strategic voting – researched the supposed best candidate in my riding, plastered info all over social media, wrote a viral blog post, etc. etc. All the other parties had promised that, should they be elected, they would scrap the system that makes strategic voting necessary in the first place in favour of something more fair. So I voted strategically, and two things happened:

            1. The party I was told was the best bet in my riding dropped to a distant third place, and

            2. The party that got into power almost immediately backpedaled on its promise to reform the system. Because of course they did.

            Fast forward to the election we had this year, and I’ve come to the conclusion that any party that gets into power for any significant length of time ends up drifting to the right anyway (due to corporate influence and power), and if we’re constantly voting out of fear rather than our ideals, we’re just perpetuating the same dynamic over and over. So I won’t do it anymore. I’m under no illusions that the parties I vote for are likely to win, but what I have come to believe is that, at the very least, I’m casting a show of support for the things that matter to me, and if enough people do that, those things are (hopefully??) more likely to be taken into consideration in the platforms of the larger parties. Also in Canada the party you vote for gets a small kickback per vote, but I don’t know if that’s the case elsewhere.

            I have to say that if I lived in the US I might think differently, because the electoral structure is different there and frankly things are so wildly fucked up that other concerns have to be factored in. But that’s where I stand for now for what we have here in Canada (and the system in the UK is similar, from what I understand).

          • That’s very well laid out! Yes, systems are different, but I think that voting for what you really want is super important. The lesser evil shouldn’t – and can’t – drive our decisions all the time. If enough people refuse to compromise, eventual we might all get something better.

          • Agreed to an extent, BUT here, for example I would like to vote for the Green party. They will not get in in my lifetime and if the Tories get in again I will likely be dead before the next election. Part of the reason the Greens won’t get in is because they’ve been deemed a ”fringe” party and get nowhere NEAR the same amount of publicity/tv airtime etc as the others. Having said that UKIP ( who are now thankfully basically dead) really WERE a fringe party, and didn’t have a manifesto, got a fuckton of publicity/airtime due to various reasons which I won’t bore you all with at this juncture. They were fascists in all but name and.. teah, there’s no succinct way of rounding all that up. But that’s why many of us will tactical vote, however I won’t tactical vote for a party I’m not at least reasonably on board with.

          • @malingo That’s totally fair. It’s quite a similar situation here actually – the Greens, despite having two seats in Parliament, were yet again denied official party status, yet an extreme-right upstart fringe group was granted it without having to prove they had any support base (and thankfully did not win a single seat). Nothing could more clearly show that the whole thing is a rigged game.

            Here, though there have been some rumblings, nobody has seriously proposed dismantling our public health care system (yet), but if something like that were to be hanging in the balance I might well have to re-reconsider my stance. It’s all so maddening.

      • This is all super interesting! I’m the same as you Rachel, I would love to vote Green – I did in 2015 which was the last time a Green candidate actually ran here and when the SNP had a much more comfortable hold on the seat. In 2017 I voted Labour as I wasn’t too sure on independence…but really regretted it because the SNP ended up only just scraping through with a 21 vote majority over the Tories! At the moment, think it would take a truly miraculous comeback for Labour or the Lib Dems to be a viable contender here, so I feel I have no real choice but to vote tactically for the SNP and hope that helps them hold on. Although, there is a Brexit party guy standing which is an interesting new variable to consider the implications of. I am very much hoping for a more comfortable SNP majority than last time thanks to a split in the leave vote, fingers crossed!

        I think I’d definitely be in the same boat as you Gilbert if I had the SNP and Labour both on the table as genuine options – benefits and risks to both as you outlined. You are obviously giving it serious thought in terms of what each would mean for yourself and for others, and that’s genuinely the most important thing I think.

        Anyway, politics indeed :D

        • This is such a fascinating conversation. Thank you for sharing all this! It gives me a lot to think about and points me in the direction of more to read about so thanks for educating me on this stuff in the UK and Canada.

          When it comes to the closest US equivalent, I feel like it depends on the level of voting we’re talking about. Like I’m way more inclined to vote less tactically in a local election than a national one (I’m including Congressional elections as national). Although, when I did this for my local elections a few years back for my city council person, the vote got split (way too many candidates ran and half of them didn’t have any kind of platform at all, literally; yay corruption!) so they did a run-off that was between the tactical candidate that I felt meh about (and hadn’t voted for in the first election) and the incumbent (who I really dislike) and… the incumbent won. It’s really hard for me not to feel like if people (myself included) had voted more strategically in the main election we could’ve outed the shitty incumbent, so that just kind of reinforced my lean towards voting tactically because the stakes just always feel too high since the alternative (ie the Republican party) is just too awful.

          • Himani I’m finding this interesting too, partly because the US seems to be THE most two-party system ever ( I know you have others but they seem to be taken less seriously than many other countries smaller parties do) and also you don’t seem to have what most UK people would consider a ”real” left wing? Like the Democrats largely are Centrist rather than left, to my perception. I don’t really understand the minutiae of how the voting system works,in terms of the tiers and all that either, I think the more I read about it the less I understand! Lots of UK people think our system is unfair and needs reforming but yours looks even more so to me.

          • Yeah this is super interesting! The only other country I follow politics in (and not even that closely) is India so it’s really hard for me to comoare if the Democrats are really that centrist compared to what’s happening in other countries? I think it depends on which Democrats and which issues we’re talking about. The two party system has its issues for sure. But IMO the biggest issue is the really unequal distribution of power when we’re talking national.

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