Metro Weekly

Study finds link between homophobia and lack of intelligence

Australian researchers found a direct correlation between cognitive ability and anti-LGBTQ attitudes

Students kissing in front of protesters from Westboro Baptist Church at Oberlin College in Oberlin, Ohio — Photo: Paul M. Walsh / Wikimedia Commons

Researchers have found that those who oppose gay rights are less intelligent than those who accept them.

According to a study published in the scientific journal Intelligence, Australian researchers found that lower cognitive ability and support of anti-LGBTQ sentiments were correlated, PsyPost reports.

The study, led by University of Queensland’s Francisco Perales, involved giving 11,654 people three tests to determine their cognitive ability: the Symbol Digits Modalities Test, the Backwards Digit Span Test, and the National Adult Reading Test.

Then, participants were asked whether they agreed with the statement, “Homosexual couples should have the same rights as heterosexual couples do.”

Once the data was compiled, a correlation was found between disagreeing with equality and poor performance in the intelligence tests, especially the verbal ability test. This correlation still existed even after demographics were taken into account.

“Altogether, the findings provide clear evidence that cognitive ability is an important precursor of prejudice against same-sex couples,” Perales wrote.

Researchers also said that cognitive ability and education both affected homophobia and stated that education would counteract “prejudice towards same-sex couples and LGBT people.”

A study by UCLA in April found that acceptance of LGBTQ people has increased globally since 1980, but has also become more polarized.

Meanwhile, a recent survey by GLAAD found an “alarming” erosion in support for LGBTQ people in America. GLAAD noted that it was the first time since they started surveying attitudes towards LGBTQ people that overall support had dropped year-on-year.