yeah this could go here or P&CE, but I think it will get less rude answers here
Pew study came out yesterday with the whole religious breakdown of congress, comparing what's there now to what was there last year.
It is choc full of all kinds of fun charts and graphs to geek out on (which is why I got so distracted I never got around to posting this yesterday when I first read it). Bottom line, though - in switching from liberal to conservative control there was basically NO real change in the makeup of it. A couple more Catholics replaced a few Protestants, that's about it.
Then today I read this and decided it was something to discuss after all.
"In all but thirteen states—in the West and Northeast—the "unaffiliated" are no more (and mostly less) than 20 percent of the population. What's more, a large majority of Americans—61 percent, including 15 percent of self-identified atheists and agnostics—say that it is important for members of Congress to have strong religious beliefs. If this preference is even moderately intense, the skeptic who wants to be a senator will have an incredibly difficult time finding an electorate to fit her minority beliefs, even in states with a higher-than-average population of "unaffiliated" people.
Is this a form of the "closet," as Andrew Sullivan describes? Perhaps. Non-belief is definitely an obstacle for an aspiring politician, and there really isn't any benefit in "coming out" as an atheist or agnostic. The United States is still too religious for that to be viable in anywhere but the most liberal enclaves, where non-belief is acceptable. Yes, the population of "unaffiliated" people is growing, but the strong cultural legacy of religious belief might keep that from translating into greater openness for less religious candidates. But we'll see."
Why is it that, even as one party clings to the call of "diversity" while another is written off (incorrectly or not) as the party of the religious right, the party in control has virtually zero impact on the religious makeup of the elected representatives that are "supposed" to represent everyone? (nevermind the serious lack of other world religons). The study clarifies that there is one single congressman who identifies as an atheistic Unitarian Universalist, so he's one of the ones counted in the "other faiths" category where they include Unitarians. Where is the equal representation here? And how do we change it?
Answer by mommy_of_two388 at 6:00 PM on Jan. 6, 2011
Answer by scout_mom at 6:15 PM on Jan. 6, 2011
Answer by Alanaplus3 at 6:16 PM on Jan. 6, 2011
Answer by mommy_of_two388 at 6:17 PM on Jan. 6, 2011
Answer by Anonymous at 6:18 PM on Jan. 6, 2011
It has been said Atheists are highly intelligent and usually very honest so maybe Atheists cannot stomach a job where being a moron and lying all the time is necessary for survival. lol
Answer by Anonymous at 6:20 PM on Jan. 6, 2011
Answer by Freela at 6:46 PM on Jan. 6, 2011
Answer by Freela at 6:48 PM on Jan. 6, 2011
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