Friday, June 11, 2004

A gender gap

An SBS poll on attitudes to homosexual marriage has come up with some interesting results. Overall, 38% of Australians were in favour and 44% were against. What is really striking though is the gender gap. 49% of women surveyed were in favour of homosexual marriage, but only 29% of men.

What can explain the different attitudes of men and women? I can think of two possible reasons for the difference. One simple explanation is that men have been portrayed by politically correct liberals as a privileged oppressor group for some decades now, and so men may be more alienated from politically correct causes than women.

The second explanation is a bit speculative, but I think it's likely to be right. Women are often more forgiving and accepting than men. It's a nice characteristic, but often formless. Men, on the other hand, can be more critical and more concerned with upholding formal standards needed to keep things going.

I expect that this mostly accounts for the more accepting attitude of women and the more critical rejection by men of homosexual marriage.

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