The Czar has spoken in the past, quite authoritatively, that Americans remain a very religious lot: we are, by our nature, a church-slash-temple-slash-synagogue-slash-mosque-going people.
Every so often, a bit of political theater calls this into question. Anytime a quasi-religious or full-on religious issue hits the newsin the most recent case from about a fortnight ago, should religions be forced to obey the law regardless of First Amendment guaranteesa pattern occurs. Democrats make a populist speech (in this case, Hillary’s disastrous claim that religions must be forced to update with the times, thank you very little), and about two weeks later, a poll is revealed showing how few Americans really believe in religion.
Well, right on cue comes the poll: Pew finds the number of Americans spurning religion reaches a record high. The Czar loves the CBS hyperbole here:
The number of Americans who don’t affiliate with a particular religion has grown to 56 million in recent years, making the faith group researchers call “nones” the second-largest in total numbers behind evangelicals, according to a Pew Research Center study released Tuesday.
Or to put it another way, the vast majority of Americans still believe in religion. Here’s what the poll shows: between 2007 and 2014, Note there are about 18 million more Americans than there were in those 7 years, so that percentage isn’t as high as it seems. In fact, if you read the actual Pew analysis, they’re clear to point out that religious Americans have decreased only about 5 million, net.
That’s a relatively small chunk of the country, folks. CBS says this makes non-religious Americans the second-largest in total numbers behind evangelicals! But that’s a fudgy interpretation as well: Evangelicals are only above half of all Protestants, and just a bit above Catholics. The point is that if you subdivide the Christians as much as the Pew study does, the finding becomes relevant only if you lump all unaffiliated religious people together. Agnostics and “nothing in particular” people outweigh atheists: just because you don’t identify with one of the preset categories doesn’t mean you aren’t religioussomething Pew acknowledges openly and readily in its analysis, but something that CBS’ own analysis is down-playing.
Two thoughts follow.
First, what the hell is the value of this spin? The Czar has no qualms with Pew or its methodology; in fact, the Pew analysis basically concludes that America remains religious and complicated. But CBS seems to be dry-washing its hands with glee, as if the Czar’s Lutheran neighbor, Baron von Murphy, will read this and immediately divest himself of all religion. Nothe CBS piece serves one function: to reassure liberals that’s it’s okay to dump their religious myths and embrace secularist liberalism because other Americans are doing it, too. That doesn’t happen: the Czar is curious if anyone has ever read a one-sided poll analysis and immediately changed his religious values based on it, just in time for a Democrat talking point. Short prediction: never. So why bother?
Second, the big losers among the Christian religions are a chunk of Protestant denominations not subdivided here. It’s no secret that the Methodists and particularly the liberal Presbyterians are bleeding members. Despite another Pew poll cited by CBS
The Pew poll acknowledges that the results are complex to decipher since Americans without religions do not become irreligious. They become lost. Unspoken in this analysis is that better questions need to be answered. Why have 5 million Americans left Christianity (other faiths remain largely unchanged) in 7 years?
Liberals, ever joyous that the bogey man of Christianity is losing a sliver of its proponents, may like that answer even less.
Божію Поспѣшествующею Милостію Мы, Дима Грозный Императоръ и Самодержецъ Всероссiйскiй, цѣсарь Московскiй. The Czar was born in the steppes of Russia in 1267, and was cheated out of total control of all Russia upon the death of Boris Mikhailovich, who replaced Alexander Yaroslav Nevsky in 1263. However, in 1283, our Czar was passed over due to a clerical error and the rule of all Russia went to his second cousin Daniil (Даниил Александрович), whom Czar still resents. As a half-hearted apology, the Czar was awarded control over Muscovy, inconveniently located 5,000 miles away just outside Chicago. He now spends his time seething about this and writing about other stuff that bothers him.