Cosmopolitanism as a measure of political tolerance: an inquiry into the acceptability of homosexuality
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The term "cosmopolitanism," or feelings of global citizenry, is often used in contemporary culture but neglected in the social sciences. This study attempts to resurrect cosmopolitanism and evaluate its relationship with tolerance toward a current stigmatized group: homosexuals. This study creates a multi-part measurement of cosmopolitanism, consisting of feelings of global citizenry, a desire for diversity, and a lack of patriotism. I test the hypothesis that individuals with cosmopolitan feelings will have warmer affective attitudes toward homosexuality with 2005 data from the World Values Survey. I find that even after controlling for normal predictors of homosexual tolerance (i.e., gender, education, religion, partisanship, and political ideology), people with more cosmopolitan mind-sets have warmer attitudes toward homosexuals. Coupled with a nation-wide growing acceptance of homosexuals, I argue that increasing cosmopolitan attitudes may engender more success for the gay rights movement.