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Does Disgust Drive Religious Freedom Attitudes? Experimental Results About the Context of Service Refusal Opinion

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Social Science Quarterly

Published online on


["Social Science Quarterly, EarlyView. ", "\n\nObjective\nWhat factors shape public support for service refusals carried out in the name of the free exercise of religion? Existing analyses treat the businesses refusing to serve LGBT citizens as fungible. We hypothesize that the religious context does not matter and that reactions are consistent with the role of socialized disgust.\n\n\nMethods\nWe engage the same experimental design in two 2019 samples, one of 800 Colorado adult residents and one of 1,010 Protestants. The 1 × 2 × 2 design enables a contrast between a control, conditions that vary the business between a florist and photographer, and conditions that vary the religious nature of the event.\n\n\nResults\nThe results suggest that the religious nature of the context is immaterial and that reactions generally conform with the role of disgust, especially for those socialized to feel it—high attending evangelicals.\n\n\nConclusion\nWe affirm the importance of the context of service delivery for religious freedom attitudes and discuss the role of religion.\n\n"]