Support for gay marriage high in developed nations: poll

gay marriage same-sex rainbow flag doma rally

Most adults in developed countries favor gay marriage or some type of legal recognition for same-sex couples and think they should be able to adopt children, according to an international poll released on Tuesday.

With the U.S. Supreme Court poised to rule on gay marriage this month and France’s recent decision to legalize same-sex unions, an Ipsos poll for Reuters showed that 52 percent of people in 16 nations favor full marriage equality for gays and 21 percent support legal recognition but not marriage.

Only 14 percent of the 12,484 adults questioned in the survey objected to same-sex marriage, or any type of legal recognition, and 13 percent were unsure how they felt.

“What we see is that in every one of the 16 countries we surveyed, there is a majority in favor of allowing same sex couples to have some sort of legal recognition,” said Nicolas Boyon, an Ipsos senior vice president.

“In nine out of 16 countries we see an outright majority in favor of full marriage equality,” he added.

Nearly 60 percent of people polled thought gay couples should have the same rights as heterosexuals to adopt children and 64 percent thought same-sex couples were just as likely to raise children successfully.

“We see majorities in 12 of 16 countries supportive of gay parenting,” said Boyon.

In Sweden, Norway, Spain, Belgium, Canada and France, where gay marriage is legal, a majority of people supported full equality for same-sex couples, along with most Germans, Britons and Australians.

In Argentina, which recognizes gay marriage, less than half of people (48 percent) favored marriage equality for gays.

The numbers were similar in the United States, where legal recognition of gay couples varies by state, with 42 percent supporting marriage for gays and 23 percent favoring legal recognition.

CHANGING ATTITUDES, SOCIAL MEDIA, RELIGION

Opposition to legal recognition or marriage of gays was highest in Hungary, South Korea, Poland and Japan, where 37 percent of people said they were unsure about how they felt.

“What is common to Hungary, South Korea and Poland is that by and large they are the countries that have the lowest percentage of people who report having a relative, a colleague, or a friend who is gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender,” said Boyon.

Three out of 10 people questioned said their attitude towards gay marriage had changed in the past five years, although they did not say how. Support for same-sex unions was highest among adults who had a relative, friend or colleague who is gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender (LGBT).

Nearly 46 percent of people said they know someone who is LGBT. In Spain and Norway the number rose to 65 percent. But in South Korea and Japan the number dropped to 3 percent and 5 percent respectively.

“Either there is no exposure or there is just too much embarrassment to admit it,” said Boyon. “It is likely there is still a stigma attached to the issue in those countries.”

Social media and religion also had an impact on attitudes about gay marriage. People who are active on social media were more likely to support same-sex couples than those who were not online as much, according to the poll.

Twenty-seven percent of people who identify themselves with a religion were more likely to support some form of legal status for gay couples, the poll showed, while 17 preferred no recognition.

“Poland has the most opposition to adoption to same-sex couples and it is probably one of the most religious countries in the survey,” Boyon said.

Ipsos questioned about 1,000 people in each country in the online survey except in Argentina, Hungary, Norway, Poland, South Korea and Sweden, where 500 residents were questioned.

The poll of 1,000 people has a margin of error of plus or minus 3.5 percentage points while one of 500 has a margin of 5 percentage points.

 



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
National

Is #JusticeForAvaLynn a case of bullying?

On Saturday, the hashtag #JusticeForAvaLynn became one of the trending topics on Twitter. Users circulated the above photo of 5-year-old AvaLynn, posted by her mother…

International

Terrorism could spread to US and Europe in…

Saudi Arabia's King Abdullah said terrorism would soon spread to Europe and the United States unless it is quickly dealt with in the Middle East,…

National

Ex-Bitcoin official to plead guilty to Silk Road…

Bitcoin entrepreneur Charlie Shrem has reached a plea deal to resolve U.S. charges that he engaged in a scheme to sell over $1 million of…

International

China's army changes tactics to prepare for war…

Chinese President Xi Jinping has said China will spur military innovation and called on the army to create a new strategy for "information warfare" as…

Gossip

Joan Rivers on life support: Report

TMZ reports that comedian Joan Rivers has been placed on life support, "completely reliant on machines to stay alive." Rivers has been hospitalized since she…

Movies

What's new on Netflix in September

September has a supernatural theme for Netflix. UFO "documentaries" and the survivalist reality series "Doomsday Preppers" are among the new series coming to the online…

Going Out

'Friends' coffeehouse Central Perk coming to NYC —…

"Friends" is coming back for a one-off special: "The One with the Free Coffee." Warner Bros. is bringing a pop-up replica of Central Perk, the…

Movies

Interview: 'As Above, So Below' directors: 5 ways…

The fraternal directors of the found footage horror "As Above, So Below" dish on the best ways to frighten the bejesus out of audiences.

NFL

3 things we learned in the Giants preseason…

The final score didn’t matter — a 16-13 win by the Giants — but it would’ve been nice to finally see Big Blue’s new-look offense get on track.

NFL

NFL Power Rankings: Seahawks, Broncos, Patriots, 49ers start…

NFL Power Rankings: Seahawks, Broncos, Patriots start at top

U.S. Soccer

5 facts about new England captain Wayne Rooney

Manchester United striker Wayne Rooney was named as the new England captain by coach Roy Hodgson on Thursday.

NFL

Jets vs. Eagles: 3 things to watch

A win on Thursday night at the Eagles would give the Jets a 3-1 record and just their second winning preseason under head coach Rex Ryan.

Wellbeing

This Week in Health: Lesbians, men most likely…

Lesbians, men most likely to achieve orgasm Location: U.S. Study subjects: 2,850 people Results: Whether you find it shocking or not, a new study reports that…

Wellbeing

VIDEO: Still not wearing sunscreen? You will after…

Sunscreen is possibly the most often repeated - and ignored - piece of skincare advice. But Thomas Leveritt took a different tactic. With a short…

Food

Twitter used to track down sources of food…

When Chicago health officials saw Twitter users complaining about local food poisoning episodes, they reached out on Twitter to those users and often ended up…

Style

Trend: White hot on the 2014 Emmy's red…

White was one of the big trends on the Emmy's red carpet.