6.01.2012

American Idiots: 46% Of Americans Hold Creationist View of Human Origins

If the recent political climate has you feeling that not much has changed in the past 30 years, the latest Gallup poll will come as no surprise.

According to Gallup:
Forty-six percent of Americans believe in the creationist view that God created humans in their present form at one time within the last 10,000 years. The prevalence of this creationist view of the origin of humans is essentially unchanged from 30 years ago, when Gallup first asked the question.

It's amazing, right? Despite the oceans of data supporting evolution, nearly half of all Americans believe humans were created in their present form. If Gallop had dug a little deeper, we would have learned that these folks believe that men were molded out of dirt, and that women were an afterthought, fashioned from Adam's rib.

Half of all Americans believe that National Geographic, The Smithsonian, The Science Channel, the Discovery Channel, and PBS are all part of a vast secular conspiracy (along with an overwhelming majority of scientists and every major US scientific organization).

Denial is a powerful drug.

We shouldn't be surprised, then, to learn that "the more religious the American, the more likely he or she is to choose the creationist viewpoint."
Two-thirds of Americans who attend religious services weekly choose the creationist alternative, compared with 25% of those who say they seldom or never attend church. The views of Americans who attend almost every week or monthly fall in between those of the other two groups. Still, those who seldom or never attend church are more likely to believe that God guided the evolutionary process than to believe that humans evolved with no input from God.
Now, if I were to ask you whether Republicans or Democrats were more likely to be creationists -- that's a no-brainer, right? Right.

"58% of Republicans believe that God created humans in their present form within the last 10,000 years."

Now, before you start laughing at the Republicans' ignorance, get this: "39% of independents and 41% of Democrats agree [that God created humans in their present form within the last 10,000 years.]"

We have a serious problem in America. It's a phenomenon unlike anything else in the world.

We are a different animal altogether.
All in all, there is no evidence in this trend of a substantial movement toward a secular viewpoint on human origins.

Most Americans are not scientists, of course, and cannot be expected to understand all of the latest evidence and competing viewpoints on the development of the human species. Still, it would be hard to dispute that most scientists who study humans agree that the species evolved over millions of years, and that relatively few scientists believe that humans began in their current form only 10,000 years ago without the benefit of evolution. Thus, almost half of Americans today hold a belief, at least as measured by this question wording, that is at odds with the preponderance of the scientific literature.



5.29.2012

The Bible Belt's Real Threat To Marriage: Divorce

According to a new report from the U.S. Census Bureau, the Bible Belt has a divorce problem:
Of the 14 states reporting divorce rates for men that were much higher than the U.S. average -- ranging from 10.0 to 13.5 per 1,000 -- most were in the South. They included Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Oklahoma, Tennessee and Texas.

In contrast, men in the Northeast divorced less than the national average. Five of the nine states that had divorce rates for men significantly below the U.S. average -- ranging from 6.1 to 8.5 -- were the Northeastern states of Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Jersey , New York and Pennsylvania.

The same was true for Southern women. Nine of the 14 states with divorce rates for women above the U.S. average, ranging from 10.7 to 16.2, were in the South. They included Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Texas and West Virginia.

By comparison, four of the 10 states with below-average divorce rates for women, ranging from 6.0 to 8.9, were in the Northeast: Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York and Pennsylvania.
Let's take a look at the maps:



It's pretty clear from these maps that the Bible Belt states (and others, to be fair) have a problem staying married.

If I remember correctly, it seems that most folks in these Bible Belt states feel that that they need to ban same-sex marriage in order to protect marriage.

Let's have a look at the status of same-sex marriage in the US (orange and red denotes constitutional amendments banning same-sex civil unions and marriages, respectively):


Looks kinda familiar, right?

Of course, we all know that the Bible Belt is the most religious section of the United States, as detailed in this map depicting US religiosity by state:


Again, looks pretty familiar, right?  Do these highly religious folks not realize that their Bible forbids divorce?

The data is quite telling. While certainly there are many factors to consider when making correlations (i.e. people in the Bible Belt marry at younger ages than their Northern counterparts), this data underscores the blatant hypocrisy associated with much of the Bible Belt's religious, anti-LGBT population.

While their religion dictates that they discriminate against gays and lesbians, they don't seem to care what the Bible has to say about divorce and re-marriage. Or perhaps they choose to believe that the anti-divorce stuff in the Bible belongs in that pile of stuff that we don't follow anymore. But the anti-gay stuff? Totally still relevant.

Funny how they pick and choose based on their own circumstances.

While they claim that the real threat to marriage is allowing same-sex couples to marry, we can clearly see that the real threat to marriage is divorce.