Constant rainbow support?
While people in the Asia-Pacific region continue to show little consensus on the subject, at least 73% of Filipinos surveyed say homosexuality should be accepted. This is the same figure as the one reported by a similar survey conducted in 2013, making the Philippines the only participant country that did not change its perception from 2013 to 2019.
This is according to a new Pew Research Center report conducted in 2019 involving 38,426 people in 34 countries. This is a follow-up study to the one made in 2013.
To ask them how they perceived homosexuality, the participants were asked: “Which one of these comes closer to your opinion? ‘Homosexuality should be accepted by society,’ or ‘Homosexuality should not be accepted by society.’”
People who said they don’t accept homosexuality was pegged at 24% (versus 26% in 2013).
Among the countries surveyed in the whole of Asia (i.e. India, Indonesia, Japan, Philippines and South Korea), the Philippines had the highest number of respondents who said they were accepting of homosexuality.
But countries in Asia-Pacific (and Oceania) showed extreme results – e.g. aside from the Philippines’ 73%, more than three-quarters of those surveyed in Australia (81%) say homosexuality should be accepted, but only 9% of Indonesians agree.
According to Pew Research Center, the survey shows that “while majorities in 16 of the 34 countries surveyed say homosexuality should be accepted by society, global divides remain.”
Mimicking the figures from APAC (and Oceania), other parts of the world also highlighted this global divide re homosexuality – e.g. 94% of those surveyed in Sweden say homosexuality should be accepted, but only 7% of people in Nigeria say the same.
Now, if it’s any consolation, across the 34 countries surveyed, a median of 52% agree that homosexuality should be accepted (versus 38% opposing it).
Other findings include:
- In 17 years, Pew Research Center found that many of the countries surveyed showed a double-digit increase in acceptance of homosexuality, such as in the cases of South Africa and South Korea.
- Those in Western Europe and the Americas were found to be more accepting than those in Eastern Europe, Russia, Ukraine, the Middle East, and sub-Saharan Africa.
- At least for a number of countries, more women than men support homosexuality.
- Younger generations were found to be more accepting. In 22 of 34 countries surveyed, younger adults are significantly more likely than their older counterparts to say homosexuality should be accepted by society.
- In most countries surveyed, those who have greater levels of education are more likely to say that homosexuality should be accepted in society than those who have less education.
- Religion plays a role in the response of those surveyed (e.g. in some countries, those who are affiliated with a religious group tend to be less accepting of homosexuality than those who are unaffiliated). As per the research, in most cases, the affiliated comparison group is made up of Christians; and yet “even among Christians, Catholics are more likely to accept homosexuality than Protestants and evangelicals in many countries with enough adherents for analysis.”
- Political ideology plays a role in acceptance of homosexuality (i.e. those on the political right are less accepting of homosexuality than those on the left).
- Attitudes on this issue are strongly correlated with a country’s wealth (i.e. people in wealthier and more developed economies are more accepting of homosexuality than are those in less wealthy and developed economies) – e.g. in Israel, 52% of higher income earners say homosexuality is acceptable in society versus only three-in-ten of lower income earners.