Rich, Catholic Countries Are The Most Accepting Of Gays [CHART]

Are you gay? If you want to be accepted, your best bet is a rich country full of Catholics.

The Pew Research centre put out a report yesterday on global attitudes about homosexuality, and it shows the link between GDP and acceptance of gays is very strong.

Acceptance of homosexuality chart


Roughly, an increase in GDP of $620 is good for one percentage point more people agreeing with the statement “homosexuality should be accepted by society.” The r-squared value of that correlation is .57, meaning variance in GDP explains about 57 per cent of the variance in attitude toward gays.

The other really big driver of attitudes is religion — but not just overall religiosity. Check out the list of countries where acceptance of gays is at least 10 points different than you would predict based on income alone:

Josh Barro/Business InsiderAll but two of the outperforming countries are heavily Catholic. Pew finds the same level of acceptance in mostly-Catholic Brazil as in the United States, even though our GDP per capita is more than four times’ Brazil’s.

The biggest outperformer on acceptance is the Philippines, again heavily Catholic, where Pew finds levels of acceptance comparable to western Europe despite per capita GDP of less than $5,000.

The list of “underperformers” is heavy on muslim countries. Most of the heavily muslim countries in Pew’s sample are poor, but acceptance of gays doesn’t break 10 per cent even in middle-income countries like Malaysia and Turkey.

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