In what are some pretty counter-intuitive findings, a UCLA study found that most people oppose same-sex marriage because they feel it threatens their own relationships and way of life.
Same sex marriage is not a new thing. The Romans were especially permissive of it, and even the Roman Emperor Nero married a man (he wasn’t the only emperor to do so). Another same-sex marriage in Spain occurred on 16 April 1061. However, as Christianity became much more prevalent in Europe, same-sex marriages were regarded as an abomination and were consistently outlawed – until recent times. Writing in Harvard Magazine in 2013, legal historian Michael Klarman wrote that while there was a growth of gay rights activism in the 1970s United States, and in the 2010s more and more countries are legalizing same-sex marriage.
However, some people just can’t deal with it. Most opponents of same-sex marriage claim either religious or ethical reasons, but a new study from UCLA found differently.
“Many people who oppose same-sex marriage are uncomfortable with casual sex and feel threatened by sexual promiscuity,” said David Pinsof, a UCLA graduate student of psychology and lead author of the study.
According to Pinsof, these people regard homosexuals as being more sexually promiscuous (without any evidence) and not fitting what they see as a proper family model – one in which the man is the breadwinner, and the woman is the housewife.
“Sexual promiscuity may be threatening to these people because it provides more temptations for spouses to cheat on one another,” Pinsof said. “On the other hand, for people who are comfortable with women being more economically independent, marrying at a later age and having more sexual partners, sexual promiscuity is not as much of a threat because women do not depend on men for financial support.”
It shouldn’t surprise anyone that people who oppose same-sex marriage are more conservative, but the conclusions are a bit surprising. These people want to protect their own relationships and marriage(s), and they feel like same-sex marriage threatens these relationships. So in a way, straight people oppose same-sex marriage to protect their own relationships.
“Opposition to same-sex marriage may be strategic by people who are seeking to protect their marriages and the marriages in their communities, and are fearful that changing the definition of marriage is threatening to their way of life,” Pinsof said. “Because they view gay people as promiscuous, they view the idea of same-sex marriage as undermining the institution of marriage.”