Before I read this “Global Brief” from the December 2014 issue of Natural Awakenings (DC edition, free at Socialist-leaning organic food markets), I knew Christian whining about declining numbers, the “godless” agenda of the LGBT and Feminist communities (among others; see “HELL NEVER LOOKED SO GOOD” post), and shrinking relevance in the US was a load of hooey. “Holy Hooey,” if you will.
And thanks to a new Pew Research Center study, my belief has been validated:
“The United States is often described as a religiously free and diverse country, but a new Pew Research Center study (I told you) reveals that 95 percent of the populace identifies itself as either Christian or unaffiliated (atheist, agnostic or having no particular religion), like those non-denominational United Universalist heathens. This ranks the US 68 out of 232 countries and territories in the Pew Religious Diversity Index. Singapore is the world’s most religiously diverse country, followed by Taiwan and Vietnam.
The study treats Christian denominations as members of the same religions, which if counted separately, would increase the ranking. (Notice how the article’s author employs this “transparency” in journalism thing? I thought it’d gone the way of the dodo.) But Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism and Judaism all have internal diversity, as well, (good point), and are considered as single religions in the study.
There’s an important distinction between religious diversity and religious freedom (there certainly is), which the report does not measure. (Ooh, please measure it, Pew!) The First Amendment to the US Constitution guarantees the right to free exercise of religion, which is not always the case in other countries.” (18) (Source: PewResearch.org).
What it can’t guarantee is that Christians won’t remember the First Amendment, when they’ve memorized the others, or disregard it (or the above bible verse). Unlike The Beastie Boys’ insistence on partying, they shouldn’t push for “the right to fight” the right to free exercise of religion. Um, hello, that’s a big reason why “the thirteen original colonies” fought and won the war against British tyranny.
(Check out http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/American_Revolution for the exciting back story.) Singing it won’t help their cause. Trust me.
(Statements in bold are the 43YOV’s own.)