I just don't know where all this is coming from. I just don't remember this growing up--people went to church, but other than that, I don't remember this constant preachy stuff. Of course, I grew up in Minnesota (which used to be fairly normal) and now live in a small town (700 people) in the buckle of the bible belt, but still...
I attended my 2nd grader's spring concert tonight. The music teacher said that the children would be performing a song about gratitude (right then I had an awful feeling). He said while they were learning the song he had them write something they were grateful for (oh, oh) and that he picked several of the children to come to the mic and say what they had written. I knew this wouldn't be good--the music teacher is in a local xtian band and volunteers for the local xtian athlete group. So up comes a little girl who says she is grateful for jesus. The place went nuts--people screaming "halleluiah", "Now, that's what I'm talking about". Then comes a little boy who says he's grateful for god. More yelling--"you tell them!" and "amens" and thundering applause. I have been considering 'coming out' for a while now, but after sitting there tonight with nearly the whole town there going wacky I realize that this is something I will not be able to do. I have to admit, sometimes I feel awfully lonely--I sensed something not so friendly during this display of amens, etc.
Thanks for being here to listen to me!
I'm going to answer your question with the title of a book: The Age of American Unreason. It is a book written by Susan Jacoby. The U.S. is in an 'anti-intellectual' phase and religious fundamentalism has run rampant:
"Modern media, with their overt and covert appeal to emotion rather than reason, are ideally suited to the propagation of a form of faith that stands opposed to most of the great rationalist insights that have transformed Western civilization since the beginning of the Enlightenment...(AND)
more than half of American adults believe in ghosts, one third believe in astrology, three quarters believe in angels, and four fifths believe in miracles." (P 18)
Our nation seems hopelessly spiraling away from Science and into the lap of Superstition.
Chances are it's just a desperate push from the religions as they fade out.
I don't expect religion to go out quietly, I expect them to get crazier as their numbers dwindle.
At the moment we're seeing them panic and in a way, they've begun shouting to make sure we still hear them. I won't be surprised when their numbers are down to a few hundred left and they start shooting just to remind us they're still here... just like any other whack-job cult. The only reason they're not quite so nutty right now is because they have enough numbers that they don't need to be.
Like an attention starved child. They will get louder.