Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Gay Metropolitans in America.

There's been this myth circulated that Columbus is one of the highest gay-populated cities in The United States. I've heard it so many times at the bar, "Columbus has the highest gay population per capita in the country! It's the San Fran of The Midwest!" While it is true that Columbus is a very liberal city with a great and booming gay population, the numbers don't really support that "Top 3" number I've heard so many people throw around.

According to research at UCLA -- Law, San Francisco remains the gay mecca it's generally been heralded. Here is the list of the largest gay populations in America per capita:

(% of total population/estimated total GLBT population)
  1. San Francisco :
    • 8.2% / 256,311
  2. Seattle :
    • 6.5% / 154,835
  3. Boston:
    • 6.2% / 201,344
  4. Portland:
    • 6.1% / 94,027
  5. Tampa
    • 5.9% / 119,044
  6. Austin
    • 5.9% / 61,732
  7. Denver
    • 5.8% / 99,626
  8. Minneapolis
    • 5.7% / 130,472
  9. Orlando
    • 5.7% / 81,272
  10. Hartford
    • 5.6% / 49,000
  11. Sacramento
    • 5.5% / 81,759
  12. Columbus
    • 5.5% / 66,300
As you can see, we're not even in the top ten (although Minneapolis is!). You'll also notice that New York, Chicago, Atlanta or Washington DC (usually considered the Gay cities) are not listed in the top either. This data is in consideration of the entire metropolitan, not just the cities themselves. Therefore, I think discrepancies could be argued since Columbus' metropolitan area includes places such as Marion, Plain City and Lancaster, notoriously conservative small towns. When compared to Boston's Metropolitan, which is surrounded by very liberal Cambridge and Quincy, it's hard to gauge the exact city themselves, since downtown Columbus and The Short North are gayer than a drag queen singing Liza.

When you look at that list, that's really the whole gamut. You've got coast-to-coast(Seattle-Hartford), South (Austin), Midwestern (Columbus), Northeastern (Boston), Northern-Midwest (Minneapolis), West (Denver)...it really shows the spectrum of gays in this country. Looks like what they say is really true--gays are people, too! They're not just an illusion nor a media creation!

What hit the rock bottom of the gay city list? Pittsburgh. 2.8% of their population is estimated to be gay. I guess they don't call it "The Rust Belt" for nothing, right?