Thursday, April 5, 2007

What Do Polls Say About Atheists?

On March 31st, Newsweek released the results of a poll done by Princeton Survey Research Associates International. (Their expertise is implied by the use of the word "Princeton" in their name; perhaps this blog should be renamed the "Princeton faQster".)

From this poll, we learn that:

- 3% percent of Americans say they are atheists.

- Oddly, 49% say that they personally know an atheist. If 49% of the population personally knows someone from the 3%, then that, it appears, doesn't add up.

- 26% of Americans say that atheists cannot be moral, and another 6% would have to think about it. Are these people from the 49% who personally know atheists, or from the other 51% who only know them from TV (or whatever)?

- 62% would not vote for an atheist, and another 9% would have to think about it. (Replace "atheist" with "black", "Jew", "woman", or even "Muslim" and see how that sounds. Is there any group, other than, say, child rapists, who would be as automatically disqualified?)

- The survey also says that
4% of "Evangelical Protestants" feel that God had no part in the origin and development of humans.

4% of Evangelical Protestants say that God had no part? They would be interesting people to meet.

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