Friday, 20 December 2013

Religious numbers declining in the US

If you live in the US, or want to, there’s a good argument for living in these places…

California’s Alpine County, Hawaii’s Kalawao County, Nevada’s Esmeralda County, New York’s Bronx and Richmond counties, Michigan’s Macomb County and Nevada’s Clark County.


Because they are the parts of America with the lowest religious participation per capita.

But there are other parts of the US with low participation, as you can see on this map here from the Washington Post(more red equals more religious participation, the paler it is, the less interest there is):

It’s a map that has some folk running scared. It “shows how washed out and feeble Catholicism and mainline Protestantism have become,” says one. “They may occupy the same territory that they did 50 years ago, but the … map [above]tells a dismal story.”

Sad, isn’t it.

And it’s not just religious participation that’s declining. American atheism is on the rise. It’s still only one in five, but it is “the fastest growing ‘religious’ group in America.” So a trend is evident.

The job remaining is to offer those increasing numbers shunning religion something better to replace it than just sheer nihilism. That’s where a rational philosophy comes in.

[Hat tip Stephen Hicks]


  1. That map is interesting; much of the 'bible belt' is not as dark red as I would have expected which is a good sign.

    I think that when religious leaders are promoting ideas which divide people, or put people into categories and encourage their followers to hate those people (for hate it is) then it is a considerable turnoff.

    Well done America for turning to common sense and abandoning supernatural witchcraft.

  2. I have visited the USA many times, and spent a good deal of time there. It's nice to know there are still places in America where you don't need to lock your doors at night and can leave your car parked out on the street without fear of theft or vandalism. However these places don't exist in the regions you have highlighted.

  3. The Bible says this will happen so its not unexpected to anyone on either side.


  4. The above decline does not seem to be reflected in Gallup and Pew e.g. polls. So you get 45% belief that modern humans only 10,000 years old [who cavorted with dinosaurs] in line with Bible quoters teaching of young earth. High numbers of believers in what seems weird to secular NZers still get recorded

  5. I get snarky with young earthers and ignorant people who laugh at them for thinking the Bible says the earth is young. A proper study of Genesis in the context of the people to whom it was written reveals scientific truths as far as could be expected at the time. It makes no comments at all about age in any scientific sense and to claim it does completely misses the point.


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