Sunday, November 8, 2009

Out with the Nones!

A 2009 report by Trinity College researchers based on the American Religious Identification Survey 2008 profiles the “no religion population” and finds that they are no longer a fringe group. The no religion segment of the U.S. population, or “Nones,” far exceed the combined total of all the non-Christian religious groups in the U.S. and is likely to increase as non-religious young people replace older religious people. This report aims to profile the Nones and try to predict their likely impact on where society is headed.

Among the report’s more interesting highlights were:
· 1 in 6 Americans is presently of No Religion in terms of Belonging (self-identification).
· 1 in 4 Americans is presently of No Religion in terms of Belief and Behavior.
· 15 percent of the total adult U.S. population self-identify as Nones or 34 million adults.
· 22 percent of Americans aged 18-29 years self-identify as Nones.
· 660,000 the annual increase of adult Americans joining the ranks of Nones since 2001. The number has halved from 1.3 million annually in the 1990s.
· 59 percent of Nones identify as agnostics and deists rather than atheists or theists.
· 61 percent of Nones believe in human evolution while 38 percent of the general American public believes in human evolution.
· 60:40 the gender ratio among male and female Nones (19 percent of American men are Nones while 12 percent of American women are Nones).
· 32 percent of current Nones report they were None by age 12, making most Nones first generation.
· 21 percent of the nation’s Independents are Nones.
· 16 percent of the nation’s Democrats are Nones.
· 8 percent of the nation’s Republicans are Nones.

1 in 6 Americans is presently of No Religion in terms of Belonging (self-identification). Why? Do the Nones represent the dying gasp of organized religion? (The Week November 6, 2009 p.13) Belonging, what does that mean? Is belonging subjective in character?

I know someone who has recently joined the Nones. Comment from the person, “I hate the politics and the favoritism in the church I use to attend. I did not belong.” The person went on to tell me that there was a singing out for voicing concerns about protocol.

I have been reading about the Nones for two years and have watched there growth. What is at stake? The character of the nation, a secular culture, a rise in liberalism, religious indifference as is in Europe, etc.? (The Week November 6, 2009 p.13)

Belonging!!?? What does it take to belong?


1 comment:

Wizard said...

I think Christians need to consider that as knowledge of science increases, religion will decrease proportionately