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The Gender Gap

The Gender Gap

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More men than women generally tend to find once-taboo sexual behaviors "morally acceptable," although there are some notable exceptions, according to a new Gallup poll.

The poll released Friday shows the widest gap in views on moral acceptability on the issue of viewing pornography. While 43 percent of men say they find nothing wrong with pornography, only 25 percent of women agree. The permissibility of porn is at its highest point among both genders since the pollster began asking the question in 2011.

More men (40 percent vs. 34 percent for women) also believe sexual intercourse between unmarried teenagers is tolerable, as well as sexual relations between unmarried people of the opposite sex (70 percent vs. 66 percent).

Polygamy is seen as OK by more men than women (20 percent compared to 13 percent). Likewise, there is a seven-point gap (12 percent compared to five percent) of men who think adultery is appropriate. The adultery disparity is the highest since Gallup began tracking the issue in 2001.

Infidelity has the lowest approval rating from both genders in the eight-question survey. The Assemblies of God maintains there shouldn't be any loosening of sexual standards.

"The difference in opinions regarding the morals of sex and relationships is a sad side effect of living in a 'relative' world," says Roger Gibson, AG Adult & Family Ministry senior director. "The model of traditional marriage should always remain as a physical, emotional, and spiritual bond between a man and a woman in order for couples to experience healthy marriages within the God-ordained boundary."

According to the Gallup survey, more women than men (three-fourths vs. 67 percent) believe divorce is now morally acceptable. Similarly, there is an eight-point spread of more women (65 percent) approving of giving birth to an out-of-wedlock baby than men (57 percent).

The distaff opinion of two-thirds is that homosexual and lesbian sexual relationships are permissible, compared to 59 percent of males.

The findings are based on Gallup's annual Values and Beliefs survey. An earlier analysis examined the results from a faith perspective.


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