Faith and Freedom Go Together
Per a new report from Gallup, the percentage of Americans now saying they believe in God is the lowest since they first started doing the survey.
In 2022, 81% of Americans say they believe in God.
When Gallup first asked this question in 1944, 96% said they believed, and in the early 1950s, it was up to 98%. It remained over 90% until 2013, when it dipped down to 87%.
The current 81% is a 6-point drop from the last time Gallup asked the question in 2017.
Digging down into the data, we get a mixed message about what it tells us about the future.
On the one hand, the age group with the lowest percentage saying they believe in God is the youngest -- 18 to 29. Only 68% say they believe. Given that these young people reflect our future, we must assume that, with no change in their views, the country will continue its purge of religion from our lives.
On the other hand, the ethnic cross section with the highest percentage saying they believe is what Gallup defines as "people of color." I assume this means Blacks and Hispanics. This group registers 88% belief, 9 points higher than "white," who register 79%.
Given that that the demographic "people of color" is growing faster than "white," and becoming each year a larger percentage of our population, this could point to a strengthening of faith, on average, in our population as we move into the future.
Why should we care about this?
From a practical point of view, faith translates into behavior, and as faith diminishes, the incidence of behaviors that once were viewed as morally unacceptable increases.