Quick change of mind on social issues

As Supreme Court hearings for same-sex marriage start today, Alex Tribou and Keith Collins for Bloomberg look back at timelines for past social issues, such as interracial marriage and abortion.

Each line represents an issue, and the height shows the number of states that removed the ban each year, so you end up with lines that increase slowly, and then there’s a sudden jolt upwards that ends in federal action. Note the quick increase over just a few years with same-sex marriage. Marijuana legalization on the far bottom right is getting started.

Scroll down the page for more details on each issue, with moving lines that provide a sense of change and the now familiar gridded state maps filled over time.

Favorites

Famous Movie Quotes as Charts

In celebration of their 100-year anniversary, the American Film Institute selected the 100 most memorable quotes from American cinema, and …

The Changing American Diet

See what we ate on an average day, for the past several decades.

Years You Have Left to Live, Probably

The individual data points of life are much less predictable than the average. Here’s a simulation that shows you how much time is left on the clock.

Real Chart Rules to Follow

There are rules—usually for specific chart types meant to be read in a specific way—that you shouldn’t break. When they are, everyone loses. This is that small handful.