Smart Talk is a daily, live, interactive program featuring conversations with newsmakers and experts in a variety of fields and exploring a wide range of issues and ideas, including the economy, politics, health care, education, culture, and the environment. Smart Talk airs live every week day at 9 a.m. on WITF’s 89.5 and 93.3.
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Host: Scott LaMar
Radio Smart Talk for Thursday, April 25:
Recent polls have found that a little more than half of Pennsylvanians support same-sex marriage. Most of the same surveys indicated only about a third favored it five to seven years ago. It's a trend that is consistent with what Americans are saying nationally.
For those in the gay, lesbian, bi-sexual, and transgender communities, that acceptance is a reason for optimism.
That's why it is so striking to see the statistics on bullying based on sexual orientation.
According to statistics compiled by the Hazelden Foundation, about 93% of teenagers hear derogatory words about sexual orientation at least once in a while. Often, that takes the form of one teen calling another one gay or referring to something as gay, and they don't mean it in a positive way.
Meanwhile, 78% of gay or believed to be gay teenagers are teased or bullied in their schools and communities -- figures much higher than for heterosexual teens.
One-fifth of LGBT students have stayed home from school in the last month for safety concerns.
witf's Pushed Around project on bullying continues on Thursday's Radio Smart Talk with a discussion on bullying based on one's perceived sexual orientation.
Jesse Gantt, Founder and CEO of The Foundation for Hope and Louis Marven, Director of Education and Youth Services at the LGBT Center Coalition of Central PA in Harrisburg
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