Not forbidding isn’t allowing: The cognitive basis of the forbid-allow asymmetry

Suggests that previous research has demonstrated that respondents are more likely to endorse the idea that something should not be allowed than to endorse the idea that it should be forbidden. It is hypothesized that this asymmetry is due to the response behavior of indifferent respondents who neither endorse that something should be forbidden nor that it should be allowed, resulting in higher endorsements of the negative form of both question wordings. Data supporting that explanation are presented from 4 experiments involving a total of 1,008 adult (aged 18+ yrs) German Ss. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2007 APA, all rights reserved)