Share of Americans with no religious affiliation is growing, data show
David Crary Associated Press
The portion of Americans with no religious affiliation is rising significantly, in tandem with a sharp drop in the percentage that identifies as Christians, according to new data from the Pew Research Center. Based on telephone surveys conducted in 2018 and 2019, Pew said Thursday that 65% of American adults now describe themselves as Christian, down from 77% in 2009. Meanwhile, the portion that describes their religious identity as atheist, agnostic or ''nothing in particular,'' now stands at 26%, up from 17% in 2009. Both Protestant and Roman Catholic ranks are losing population share, according to Pew. It said 43% of U.S. adults identify as Protestants, down from 51% in 2009, while 20% are Catholic, down from 23% in 2009.
Read the rest here.
Granted that this is hardly news to us, but that the above headline was the lead story, PAGE ONE, above the fold on this morning's Plain Dealer speaks volumes to me. It is one more reminder that organized religion in the US is on the decline and that irreligiosity, irregular religious practice or NONE AT ALL is becoming more and more prevalent in the United States.
I have little doubt but that the fundamentalists and evangelicals will dispute these numbers, though even some evangelicals themselves have made similar observations in the past, while generally failing to recognize what is causing their loss of followers. In any case, it's also entirely possible that such reports will act to increase friction between the Religious Reich and secular government (witness Project Blitz), at least in the near term.
My advice is simple: watch this space ... because this business isn't over by a long shot.
I hope it changes! In the meantime I don't like " I'm nothing" - a rather stupid way of describing non-religious people.
I agree, and for a fairly long time, I've had little issue in identifying as an atheist. Someone doesn't like it? That's THEIR problem.
Sounds good, but atheist is fine for me.
Hidden in the article: the proportion of outright atheists actually doubled.
"Self-described atheists now account for 4% of U.S. adults, up from 2% in 2009; agnostics account for 5%, up from 3% a decade ago; and 17% of Americans now describe their religion as “nothing in particular,” up from 12% in 2009."
The article at Joe.My.God. had the perfect illustration for this survey from Pew Research: a photo of empty pews.