2013 may have been a new low for Congress, but it was nonetheless a year for breakthroughs. The Pew Research Center has put together a baker’s dozen list of milestones the public passed for the first time in 2013:
- A majority of the public (51%) now favors same-sex marriage, while 67% (2 out of 3) favor legal agreements like civil unions that give the same rights as marriage.
- A majority of the public (52%) now favors legalizing the use of marijuana.
- A majority (52%) says the US should mind its own business internationally, the highest it has been in half a century.
- 38% of Americans say they do not want their own representative in Congress reelected, its highest point in two decades.
- For the first time ever, a majority (53%) thinks that the federal government threatens their personal rights and freedoms.
- 36% of the millennial generation (ages 18 to 31) is living in their parents’ home, the highest share in at least 40 years.
- In a record 40% of all households with children, the mother is either the sole or the primary breadwinner.
- The number of illegal immigrants has gone down, while the number of legal immigrants has soared above 40 million.
- The number of Hispanic and Black high school graduates who have gone on to college immediately has gone up, while the number of White graduates has gone down. In fact, for the first time the percentage of Hispanics who are going on to college (69%) is higher than the percentage of Whites (67%).
- A majority of Americans think the US plays a less important and powerful role in the world than it did 10 years ago.
- The number of American Catholics calling themselves “strong” Catholics is the lowest in 40 years.
- A majority of Americans (56%) now own a smartphone of some kind.
- 50% of the public say that the Internet is a main source for national and international news.
These are just the headlines, you really should go read the whole article for more details and data.