Did Christians Really Win a Gold Medal in the Oppression Olympics?

A couple of weeks ago, the Pew Research Center came out an extensive and confusing-as-hell report on religious hostilities around the world and found that Christians, more than any other religious group, were the most persecuted:

(Atheists are in there, too, lumped in with “others”)

One conservative website even uses the headline: “Pew Study: Christians Are The World’s Most Oppressed Religious Group.”

But there are two points worth noting.

[Read more…]

In U.S., (Non-)Religiosity and Political Preference Are Heavily Linked. That’s Terrible News For the GOP.

The team at the Washington Post had a clever idea when looking at the Gallup numbers that came out a week ago.

… Gallup released a 50-state study of the most and least religious states in the country. We took the data … and overlaid it with the 2012 presidential election results. Here‘s what we found. The 19 most religious states — ranked by Gallup as those who identify as “very religious” — all went for former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney in 2012.



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Hello Millennials

You see that green bar?

The freakishly large one that’s on the left side of the poster below?

The one representing religiously unaffiliated millennials?

The one that’s crushing all the smaller bars below it?

See it?

Now pat yourself on the back.

(via Tony Jones)

[Read more…]

New Gallup Poll Finds That the Number of Nonreligious Americans Dropped 1.7% in One Year

If you’ve often wondered how I retain my high level of sanity as well as my lovely complexion, puzzle no more: I live in the third least religious state in the country. Plus, I’d have to drive a day or two to get to an area where a majority of people consider themselves “very religious.” (Admittedly, this cheers me like beer cheers a barfly.)

How do I know? By looking at the latest Gallup numbers, released yesterday.



[Read more…]

Jennifer Michael Hecht and Ron Reagan Talk Atheism in Politics on ‘Hardball’

Jennifer Michael Hecht, one of my absolute favorite writers, recently appeared on MSNBC’s Hardball, along with fellow atheist Ron Reagan, to talk about her article in Politico Magazine about atheism as “the last taboo” in American politics. Though it’s a brief segment, they took a serious look at the “poison pill” problem we all presume atheists would face in political contests, particularly in regard to the presidency.

Michael Smerconish was the guest host, and it was encouraging to hear him so eager to, as he put it, “test the hypothesis” that an avowed atheist would be effectively barred from high office in the current political climate. As Hecht says in the segment, the culture is just crawling its way out of the religious tensions associated with the Cold War (“godless communism” vs. American Judeo-Christianity) and 9/11, and that the time really has come for nonbelieving politicians to make themselves known. [Read more…]


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