News / USA

Study Shows Shift in US Religious Attitudes

VOA News
A new study shows a significant increase in the number of Americans who say they are not affiliated with a particular religion.
 
The findings of the Pew Research Center indicate nearly 20 percent of all Americans now consider themselves agnostics, atheists or "nothing in particular" when it comes to religious affiliation, a rise from 15 percent five years ago.
 
Researchers say the number of religiously unaffiliated Americans is even higher among younger adults, accounting for 32 percent of those under the age of 30.
 
The study, released Tuesday, could have implications for the presidential race between U.S. President Barack Obama and Republican challenger Mitt Romney, as their campaigns seek to strengthen their appeal to voters ahead of the November election.
 
The study found almost a quarter of registered voters who identify themselves either as Democrats or Democratic "leaning" say they are religiously unaffiliated, a rise from 17 percent five years ago.
 
Among Republican and Republican "leaning" voters, the percentage of those describing themselves as religiously unaffiliated grew from 9 to 11 percent over the past five years.
 
Researchers say the factors behind the increased number of religiously unaffiliated people in America, historically a deeply religious nation, include "generational replacement" — the gradual replacement of older generations by newer ones — and a rise in the number of Americans raised without a religious affiliation.
 
In spite of the increase, researchers say not all of the religiously unaffiliated are strictly secular, with many saying they do believe in God, pray daily or consider themselves "spiritual but not religious."
 
The findings are based on several broad surveys conducted by Pew and the PBS television series "Religion and Ethics Newsweekly."

You May Like

Turkey: No Ransom Paid for Release of Hostages Held by IS Militants

President Erdogan hails release of hostages as diplomatic success but declines to be drawn on whether their release freed Ankara's hand to take more active stance against insurgents More

Audio Sierra Leone Ebola Lockdown May Be Extended

Lockdown, which started Friday, aims to allow health workers to locate hidden Ebola patients, educate others on how to avoid the deadly disease More

US Pivot to Asia Demands Delicate Balancing Act

As the tumult in the Middle East distracts Obama, shifting American focus eastward appears threatened More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Godwin from: Nigeria
October 11, 2012 6:21 AM
Too bad for America. In truth of the expectation of the antichrist rising from here, religious leaning of America will even go down at a faster rate than 5yrs. But it is shameful that while leaning toward innocuous religions wanes, the growth of aggressive and destructive "peaceful" ones escalate. It is a failure of the older generation of Americans to give direction to the younger ones. The end result is chaos! No one will be surprised soon to see America remove 'IN GOD WE TRUST' from its constitution.

Less surprising too if America wakes up one morning to declare it illegal to believe in God. It did happen in the medieval and also in USA's parent country England. It's the practice to hound Christians in all of Asia, Middle East and Europe. If it rises again, it'll be history repeating itself. But worse still, it will be the end of the American Empire. It's just the work of the antichrist to use America to achieve its end, and America's acceptance of the destructive role, but everything depends on the same God that America rejects: He will bring the ancient serpent to subjection in due time for the benefit of humanity, not just for America. Righteousness exalts a nation, sin is a reproach to a nation that rejects God.


by: Jeff Kuryk from: Western Canada
October 10, 2012 11:40 AM
Find out what social scientists discovered by exploring the concept of meaning by checking out the YouTube video, "What is the Meaning of Life 101?"


by: Michael from: USA
October 10, 2012 2:53 AM
Giving up a belief based on the belief that such belief is an illusionism is not to say anything about virtue ethics, so this data cannot mean widespread immorality


by: Zado from: AZ
October 09, 2012 3:08 PM
Well, it looks like egonovism is on the rise.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Natural Gas Export Plan Divides Maryland Towni
X
Deborah Block
September 21, 2014 2:12 PM
A U.S. power company that has been importing natural gas now wants to export it. If approved, its plant in Lusby, Maryland, would likely be the first terminal on the United States East Coast to export liquefied natural gas from American pipelines. While some residents welcome the move because it will create jobs, others oppose it, saying the expansion could be a safety and environmental hazard. VOA’s Deborah Block examines the controversy.
Video

Video Natural Gas Export Plan Divides Maryland Town

A U.S. power company that has been importing natural gas now wants to export it. If approved, its plant in Lusby, Maryland, would likely be the first terminal on the United States East Coast to export liquefied natural gas from American pipelines. While some residents welcome the move because it will create jobs, others oppose it, saying the expansion could be a safety and environmental hazard. VOA’s Deborah Block examines the controversy.
Video

Video Fears Ebola Outbreak ‘Beyond Our Capability to Contain’

Each day brings with it new warnings about the deadly Ebola outbreak already blamed for killing more than 2,600 people across West Africa. And while countries and international organizations like the United Nations are starting to come through on promises of help for those most affected, the unprecedented speed with which the virus has spread is raising questions about the international response. VOA's Jeff Seldin has more from Washington.
Video

Video Difficult Tactical Battle Ahead Against IS Militants in Syria

The U.S. president has ordered the military to intensify its fight against the Islamic State, including in Syria. But how does the military conduct air strikes in a country that is not a U.S. ally? VOA correspondent Carla Babb reports from the Pentagon.
Video

Video Iran, World Powers Seek Progress in Nuclear Talks

Iran and the five permanent members of the U.N. Security Council plus Germany, known as the P5 + 1, have started a new round of talks on Iran's nuclear program. VOA State Department correspondent Pam Dockins reports that as the negotiations take place in New York, a U.S. envoy is questioning Iran's commitment to peaceful nuclear activity.
Video

Video Alibaba Shares Soar in First Day of Trading

China's biggest online retailer hit the market Friday -- with its share price soaring on the New York Stock Exchange. The shares were priced at $68, but trading stalled at the opening, as sellers held onto their shares, waiting for buyers to bid up the price. More on the world's biggest initial public offering from VOA’s Bernard Shusman in New York.
Video

Video Obama Goes to UN With Islamic State, Ebola on Agenda

President Obama goes to the United Nations General Assembly to rally nations to support a coalition against Islamic State militants in Iraq and Syria. He also will look for nations to back his plan to fight the Ebola virus in West Africa. As VOA White House correspondent Luis Ramirez reports, Obama’s efforts reflect new moves by the U.S. administration to take a leading role in addressing world crises.
Video

Video Migrants Caught in No-Man's Land Called Calais

The deaths of hundreds of migrants in the Mediterranean this week has only recast the spotlight on the perils of reaching Europe. And for those forunate enough to reach a place like Calais, France, only find that their problems aren't over. Lisa Bryant has the story.
Video

Video Westgate Siege Anniversary Brings Back Painful Memories

One year after it happened, the survivors of the terror attack on Nairobi's Westgate Shopping Mall still cannot shake the images of that tragic incident. For VOA, Mohammed Yusuf tells the story of victims still waiting for the answer to the question 'how could this happen?'
Video

Video Militant Assault in Syria Displaces Thousands of Kurds

A major assault by Islamic State militants on Kurds in Syria has sent a wave of new refugees to the Turkish border, where they were stopped by Turkish border security. Turkey is already hosting about 700,000 Syrian refugees who fled the civil war between the government and the opposition. But the government in Ankara has a history of strained relations with Turkey's Kurdish minority. Zlatica Hoke reports Turkey is asking for international help.
Video

Video Whaling Summit Votes to Uphold Ban on Japan Whale Hunt

The International Whaling Commission, meeting in Slovenia, has voted to uphold a court ruling banning Japan from hunting whales in the Antarctic Ocean. Conservationists hailed the ruling as a victory, but Tokyo says it will submit revised plans for a whale hunt in 2015. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video A Dinosaur Fit for Land and Water

Residents and tourists in Washington D.C. can now examine a life-size replica of an unusual dinosaur that lived almost a hundred million years ago in northern Africa. Scientists say studying the behemoth named Spinosaurus helps them better understand how some prehistoric animals adapted to life on land and in water. The Spinosaurus replica is on display at the National Geographic museum. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Iraqi Kurdistan Church Helps Christian Children Cope find shelter in churches in the Kurdish capital, Irbil

In the past six weeks, tens of thousands of Iraqi Christians have been forced to flee their homes by Islamic State militants and find shelter in churches in the Kurdish capital, Irbil. Despite U.S. airstrikes in the region, the prospect of people returning home is still very low and concerns are starting to grow over the impact this is having on the displaced youth. Sebastian Meyer reports from Irbil on how one church is coping.


Carnage and mayhem are part of daily life in northern Nigeria, the result of a terror campaign by the Islamist group Boko Haram. Fears are growing that Nigeria’s government may not know how to counter it, and may be making things worse. More

AppleAndroid