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REGISTERED NURSES’ ATTITUDES TOWARD THE PROTECTION OF GAYS AND - page 39 / 161

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2003). Religious conservativism and liberalism also plays a

significant role; support for gay rights varies by religion,

with Jews most accepting and born-again Protestants the most

disapproving (Lewis, 2003). Heterosexuals self-identifying with

a fundamentalist religious denomination typically manifest

higher levels of sexual prejudice than do non-religious and

members of liberal denominations (Herek & Glunt, 1993; Herek,

2000b).

This difference in homophobia between conservative and

liberal denominations is reflected in the ATLG as well (Herek,

1998). Similarly, research utilizing other measurement scales of

homophobia, such as the Homophobia-Scale (H-Scale), also

correlates differences in homophobia among religious

denominations (Finlay & Walther, 2003). Conservative Protestants

have the highest H-scale score, next is moderate Protestants and

Catholics. Catholics show scores similar to those of moderate

Protestant groups. Liberal Protestants and individuals not-

affiliated with a religion have significantly lower homophobia

scores (Finlay & Walther, 2003). The least homophobic appears to

be individuals who do not self-identify themselves as Christian

(Finlay & Walther, 2003).

There is also a positive correlation between support of

lesbian and gay human rights and conservative religious sects

(Petersen & Donnenwerth, 1998; Ellis, et. al, 2002). Irrational

29

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