Meaning that somehow conservative Protestants are to be blamed for non-Protestant youth watching porn which is produced by liberals and atheists.
Just what the researchers use to determine what is "evangelical" is not said. Also, most likely does not take into account the fact that other negative societal aspects also typically are higher in evangelical areas, from low-income to higher crime, but are not caused by evangelicalism, as instead that is the culture in which people see there spiritual need more than affluent suburbs. Likewise a study of the 1st century church could find that slavery predominated more among Christians since slaves were more open to the gospel, rather than Christianity fostering slavery.
I suspect that the findings of the study were determined by its intent:
“My speculation is that it might be due to the pressure from conservative Protestant culture which forbids or even shames overt sexual expression. Under such a religious cultural context, youth may have no other option but to seek out sexual opportunities, including porn viewing, covertly.”
Likely the researcher advocates "safe-sex" fornication, abortion, sodomy, etc. in action.
They looked at county-level data and looked at how people self-reported their religious affiliation.
Counties with higher proportions of self-reported evangelicals saw higher proportions of porn viewership among all teens, though the largest difference in groups was comparing non-religious teens in highly evangelical counties to non-religious teens in less evangelical communities.
Personally, I have a suspicion it has something to do with an urban/rural divide and there being less to do in rural communities.
I know it when I see it.
Could it be that Christian youth stay away from porn when they know so many contemporaries around them are watching porn?
In other words, the effect is the opposite of what is stated?