Survey: One in five Americans has no religion

BIV

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#1
Note: This is not just Atheist/agnostic. It's anyone not affiliated with an organized religion. Hell, that's probably most of Wackbag.


Survey: One in five Americans has no religion

By Dan Merica, CNN
Washington (CNN) – The fastest growing "religious" group in America is made up of people with no religion at all, according to a Pew survey showing that one in five Americans is not affiliated with any religion.
The number of these Americans has grown by 25% just in the past five years, according to a survey released Tuesday by the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life.
The survey found that the ranks of the unaffiliated are growing even faster among younger Americans.
Thirty-three million Americans now have no religious affiliation, with 13 million in that group identifying as either atheist or agnostic, according to the new survey.
Pew found that those who are religiously unaffiliated are strikingly less religious than the public at large. They attend church infrequently, if at all, are largely not seeking out religion and say that the lack of it in their lives is of little importance.
And yet Pew found that 68% of the religiously unaffiliated say they believe in God, while 37% describe themselves as “spiritual” but not “religious.” One in five said that they even pray every day.
John Green, a senior research adviser at Pew, breaks the religiously unaffiliated into three groups. First, he says, are those who were raised totally outside organized religion.
Second are groups of people who were unhappy with their religions and left.
The third group, Green says, comprises Americans who were never really engaged with religion in the first place, even though they were raised in religious households.
“In the past, we would describe those people as nominally affiliated. They might say, 'I am Catholic; I am a Baptist,' but they never went" to services, Green says of this last group. “Now, they feel a lot more comfortable just saying, ‘You know, I am really nothing.’ ”
According to the poll, 88% of religiously unaffiliated people are not looking for religion.
“There is much less of a stigma attached" to not being religious, Green said. “Part of what is fueling this growth is that a lot of people who were never very religious now feel comfortable saying that they don't have an affiliation.”
Demographically, the growth among the religiously unaffiliated has been most notable among people who are 18 to 29 years old.
According to the poll, 34% of “younger millennials” - those born between 1990 and 1994 - are religiously unaffiliated. Among “older millennials,” born between 1981 and 1989, 30% are religiously unaffiliated: 4 percentage points higher than in 2007.
Poll respondents 18-29 were also more likely to identify as atheist or agnostic. Nearly 42% religious unaffiliated people from that age group identified as atheist or agnostic, a number far greater than the number who identified as Christian (18%) of Catholic (18%).
Green says that these numbers are “part of a broader change in American society.”
“The unaffiliated have become a more distinct group,” he said.
Pew's numbers were met with elation among atheist and secular leaders. Jesse Galef, communications director for the Secular Student Alliance, said that the growth of the unaffiliated should translate into greater political representation for secular interests.
“We would love to see the political leaders lead on this issue, but we are perfectly content with them following these demographic trends, following the voters,” Galef said.
“As more of the voters are unaffiliated and identifying as atheist and agnostics, I think the politicians will follow that for votes.
“We won’t be dismissed or ignored anymore,” Galef said.
The Pew survey suggested that the Democratic Party would do well to recognize the growth of the unaffiliated, since 63% of them identify with or lean toward that political group. Only 26% of the unaffiliated do the same with the Republican Party.
"In the near future, if not this year, the unaffiliated voters will be as important as the traditionally religious are to the Republican Party collation,” Green predicted.
Green points to the 2008 exit polls as evidence for that prediction. That year, Republican presidential nominee John McCain beat President Barack Obama by 47 points among white evangelical voters, while Obama had a 52-point margin of victory over McCain among the religiously unaffiliated.
According to exit polls, the proportion of religiously unaffiliated Americans who supported the Democratic presidential candidate grew 14 points from 2000 to 2008.
In announcing the survey’s findings at the Religion Newswriters Association conference in Bethesda, Maryland, Green said the growing political power of the unaffiliated within the Democratic Party could become similar to the power the Religious Right acquired in the GOP in the 1980s.
“Given the growing numbers of the unaffiliated, there is the potential that that could be harnessed,” he said.
Sorry about the trolling source:
religion.blogs.cnn.com/2012/10/09/survey-one-in-five-americans-is-religiously-unaffiliated/?hpt=hp_c1


 

BIV

I'm Biv Dick Black, the Over Poster.
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#6
I thought that I heard you laughing.


That's how the non-affiliated laughs.
 

whiskeyguy

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#7
This makes sense... organized religion has held itself back so much that it's quickly becoming a joke to even people who believe in a god/higher power.

I was surprised to see that only 13 million Americans are agnostic/atheist... that's only 4% of the population. For some reason I thought atheists/agnostics made up around 15% of Americans... but perhaps that was including the unaffiliated religious.
 

Motor Head

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#9
Oh Mighty Odin, watch over my family with a mighty sword to deliver a deathblow to those that would harm them. Let me bath in the blood of all those that stand in the way of my quest for beer and large breasts. When I die, let it be a horrible and blood spattering affair where my name will echo in your halls of lamented lore. Upon my arrival to Valhalla, let me battle other fallen warriors for your glory and let my reward of hot tubs filled with fat titted wenches as I suckle at their whiskey engorged teats never end! Let our snowballs fights be epic!!!
 

Wrecktum

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#11
This makes sense... organized religion has held itself back so much that it's quickly becoming a joke to even people who believe in a god/higher power.

I was surprised to see that only 13 million Americans are agnostic/atheist... that's only 4% of the population. For some reason I thought atheists/agnostics made up around 15% of Americans... but perhaps that was including the unaffiliated religious.
Most people I know only care about the jeeezoooos are the people that fear eternal damnnation if they don't at least side with the jeeezooos

Posted from smoke signal
 

Ballbuster1

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#12
I was raised Episcopalian but stopped going years ago.
I married a Catholic and we raised the kids that way
but that was the wife's wishes. I couldn't care less.
They way you live your life is way more important than
what you do 1 day a week and on certain holidays.
 

Lord Zero

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#13
Oh Mighty Odin, watch over my family with a mighty sword to deliver a deathblow to those that would harm them. Let me bath in the blood of all those that stand in the way of my quest for beer and large breasts. When I die, let it be a horrible and blood spattering affair where my name will echo in your halls of lamented lore. Upon my arrival to Valhalla, let me battle other fallen warriors for your glory and let my reward of hot tubs filled with fat titted wenches as I suckle at their whiskey engorged teats never end! Let our snowballs fights be epic!!!
P.S., And bring back Firefly and Clerks: The Animated Series.
 

Hudson

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#14
C N E Catholic here....went to Catholic school until College...wanted to become a priest in grade school. Jesuits, girls, and hormones fixed that.
 

Jacuzzi Billy

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#15
That's not good enough. Every answer other than agnostic is equally annoying to me.
 

whiskeyguy

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#16
That's not good enough. Every answer other than agnostic is equally annoying to me.
I'm extremely agnostic, but don't mind other answers as long as people aren't trying to force their opinion on me. I really have a problem when people start trying to ban crosses at the 9/11 memorial or teach Christianity as anything but philosophy in text books.
 

LiddyRules

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#18
 

Atomic Fireball

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After all the body blows science has dealt religion in the last 100 years it's amazing 80% still have an affiliation. The Old Testament used to be taken literally, but now most functional thinkers are forced to consider it "allegorical". I just read an essay by Mark Twain from about 1905 when his wife and all but one of his kids were dead and he was pretty grumpy about the Big Guy. Leeuwenhoek and Jenner had proved that there were millions of species of invisible bacteria on the planet, and Twain was contemplating how Noah must have handled them on the Ark. He concluded Noah and his family must have been swollen up like sausages for 40 days and nights, acting as hosts to millions of species of bacteria.
 

BIV

I'm Biv Dick Black, the Over Poster.
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#21
That's not good enough. Every answer other than agnostic is equally annoying to me.
Meanwhile, I find nothing to be more of a cop out than labeling yourself agnostic. I'd rather someone declare themselves non denominational. Agnostic just means you're too afraid to admit you're atheist, IMO.
 

Jacuzzi Billy

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#22
Meanwhile, I find nothing to be more of a cop out than labeling yourself agnostic. I'd rather someone declare themselves non denominational. Agnostic just means you're too afraid to admit you're atheist, IMO.
Why would a person be afraid to admit they are an atheist? If someone asks me what I believe, I never think myself, "Hurry, say agnostic instead of atheist or else you will pay!!!" And for me, agnostic and atheist have nothing to do with each other, I know they often get lumped together and that should't happen.
 

whiskeyguy

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#23
Agnostic just means you're too afraid to admit you're atheist, IMO.
I think you're wrong here. While people may claim to be agnostic out of laziness, it's a valid (probably the most valid) philosophical belief. Atheists believe there's no god, the religious believe there is. Agnostics simply acknowledge that there's not enough information, and that people are not smart enough, to make a determination. Some agnostics lean atheist, while others lean religious. I've bounced back and forth between the two, but have called myself agnostic since I took the time to actually consider/question religion in high school.

In my mind an atheist that makes a claim that god absolutely doesn't exist is just as intellectually dishonest as a Catholic that makes the claim that their god absolutely does exist.
 

Jacuzzi Billy

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#24
I think you're wrong here. While people may claim to be agnostic out of laziness, it's a valid (probably the most valid) philosophical belief. Atheists believe there's no god, the religious believe there is. Agnostics simply acknowledge that there's not enough information, and that people are not smart enough, to make a determination. Some agnostics lean atheist, while others lean religious. I've bounced back and forth between the two, but have called myself agnostic since I took the time to actually consider/question religion in high school.

In my mind an atheist that makes a claim that god absolutely doesn't exist is just as intellectually dishonest as a Catholic that makes the claim that their god absolutely does exist.
Stop being a pussy!!!
 

Creasy Bear

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#25
I'm an agnostic, but I call myself an atheist because the word annoys the type of people I love to annoy.