January 26, 2020 The Newspaper Serving LGBT Los Angeles

COLUMN: L.A. in the Ranking of American Cities for LGBTQ+ Dating

By David Cusick

Across the US, the LGBTQ+ community is becoming more widely accepted each day and each year. Still, not all places are equal – some cities are more welcoming to the community than others. 

If you’ve traveled around the nation, you may have experienced this first hand. There’s a reason it feels easier to find like-minded people in one city compared to another. 

Dating within the LGBTQ+ community depends on more than biases and discrimination of the people that live within that area. People will have their own individual opinions wherever you go, but dating is much more complicated than that. There are a variety of measurable factors that contribute to how easy or challenging it is to get a date in a given geographic location. 

With this, the team at Bespoke Surgical set out to determine the best city for gay dating in the US. They looked at factors like percentage of married people, prevalence of the LGBTQ+ population, cost of a drink, and more to pinpoint the city in America with the best opportunity for gay dating. So how does Los Angeles perform against the top 50 cities? 

Out of a total possible score of 50, LA earned a 30.2. While it seems like there’s room for improvement, the highest scoring city, New Orleans, received a 34.4. Los Angeles is titled the 12th best city in America for gay dating and the best city in California.

Los Angeles notably earned a perfect score on the HRC Municipal Equality Index. California strictly prohibits discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity. 

While this may seem like a standard, only 21 states meet this threshold. The state provides support for discrimination in various aspects, including housing, employment, public accomodations, education, healthcare and more. 

One area Los Angeles falls short in is the overall dating environment. The costly drink prices and few bars in relation to the large population density pose challenges to local singles. These challenges are ones that aren’t necessarily specific to the LGBTQ+ community. Despite sexuality, all singles share the struggle of accessing and affording alcohol. 

All things considered, this isn’t the worst thing to have a less than perfect performance on. While it would be convenient for cheaper drinks to be on the menu, bars are not the only way to meet people. 

Alcohol can take the edge off first date jitters, but sober dates can be more serious and meaningful. Opting for an alternative date idea can also save some cash without having to worry about buying your partner drinks to show your interest. 

Each city offers different strengths and weaknesses for the single LGTBQ+ population. There’s no one perfect city that is ideal for gay dating in every category. However, these scores are much higher than they would have been if analyzed a few years back, and they’re sure to keep rising as society modernizes. 

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