Psychologists at the University of Toronto showed 22 women and nine men 104 photos of straight and gay black and white men and asked participants to rate the men on a scale of one (not likable) to seven (extremely likable). With no knowledge of each man’s sexual orientation, the participants rated white straight men as more likable than white gay men, and gay black men as more likable than straight black men.
They reconfirmed these findings in a second experiment asking 36 women and 14 men to move a joystick forward towards white men and away from black men. They reacted most quickly to straight white guys and gay black guys. The researchers say this might shed light on sexual perception and homophobia.
It might also help explain why HBO viewers like True Blood‘s Lafayette so much.
Image via Elvert Barnes