Evangelicals Score Highest on Patriotism
WASHINGTON (RNS)—When it comes to God and country, white evangelicals report the most intense patriotic feelings in a new poll, with more than two-thirds (68 percent) saying they are extremely proud to be an American.
That figure was markedly higher than for white mainline Protestants (56 percent), minority Christians (49 percent), Catholics (48 percent) and religiously unaffiliated Americans (39 percent), according to the study, conducted by the Washington-based Public Religion Research Institute in partnership with Religion News Service.
White evangelicals are also more likely than any other religious group surveyed to believe that God has granted the U.S. a special role in history (84 percent) and to say they will likely attend a public July 4th celebration (62 percent).
On the other end of the spectrum, relatively few religiously unaffiliated Americans believe in a God-given American exceptionalism, (40 percent) or plan to attend a public Independence Day celebration (48 percent).
Eric Metaxas, the popular Christian author and speaker, said evangelicals “are not patriotic and pro-American in a tribalistic, nationalistic, or jingoistic sense.
“But they do tend to be pro-America because they believe that the ideas of the Founders — religious liberty at the head of them — have been a huge blessing to those on our shores – and to those beyond them.”
“Like Gov. Winthrop of the Massachusetts Bay Colony in the 17th century,” Metaxas continued, “evangelicals see America as being blessed by God to be a blessing to others, to be a ‘city on a hill.’ And to the extent that that’s true, they celebrate that.”
But Dan Cox, PRRI’s research director, said the study of 1,007 adults might say as much about cultural and regional differences among Americans as religious distinctions.
“A lot of evangelicals live in the South, and flying a flag from your house or car, and singing the national anthem — not just standing for it — is infused in Southern life,” said Cox.
“In the South and in many rural areas, we see a cultural terrain that is more likely to embrace Americana in ways that people who live outside the South don’t get,” he said.
Similarly, a person’s lack of religiosity doesn’t necessarily signal a lack of patriotism.
Instead, the relative lack of a visible patriotism among the one in five Americans who are religiously unaffiliated may be better explained by their perceptions that they are culturally distinct from the rest of the country, Cox added.
The poll found that unaffiliated Americans are more likely than other religious groups to report that they are very different from the typical American, and Americans who believe they are atypical are also much less likely to say they are extremely patriotic (35 percent) than those who see themselves as typical (59 percent.)
It may also come down to politics: The unaffiliated tend to be liberal, and liberals tend to view their patriotism in different ways than conservatives, who, as the poll shows, are much more likely to embrace public displays of patriotism.
“Many liberals argue that they can be patriotic as they criticize their country, and exercise their First Amendment rights to express dissenting opinion,” Cox added.
In general, the poll found that Americans are proud to be Americans, with eight in 10 reporting that they are extremely (51 percent) or very proud (31 percent).
Asked what makes them proud to be an American, those surveyed said:
—Their military service or American military achievements, including the capture and killing of Osama bin Laden (17 percent)
—The nation’s response to the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks (14 percent)
—Freedom in American society (12 percent)
About one-third (31 percent) said there has been a time when they were not proud to be an American — the most cited reasons given were the wars in Iraq and Vietnam (29 percent) and poor treatment of minorities and racism (14 percent.)
The study, conducted June 5-9, had a margin of error of plus or minus 3.1 percentage points.
- Andrew MasonUncommon Gratitude http://andrewsmason.com/uncommon-gratitude/ #HappyThanksgiving
- Andrew MasonCreating A Small Group Curriculum Map by Ben Reed http://www.smallgroupchurches.com/creating-a-small-group-curriculum-map/
- Marcella WoodridgeThe longer I live the more I know I need GOD leading my life every step of the way.
- Octavia CarterHello I'm New Here!!
- Octavia CarterHello I'm New Here!!
- Octavia Carter just moved in. Take time to say hey.
- Debbie Harris published the blogpost May Jesus Christ Be The Ultimate Treasure We Always Seek by Debbie Harris..
- Debbie Harris published the blogpost Father Who Can We Graciously And Humbly Walk Beside Today Just To Love by Debbie Harris.
- Bryce Johnson just moved in. Take time to say hey.
- Bill Reichart published the blogpost 13 Resources For Ministry Leaders Who Struggle with Porn.
- Mike Liebler published the blogpost Expert Reveals Biggest Concern About Youngsters And Social Media.
- Mike Liebler published the blogpost Half (54%) Of US Teens Think Life Would Be Better Without Social Media.
- Jeffrey Totey published the blogpost Roy Lichtenstein's Most Popular Painting is Displayed.
- Mike Liebler published the blogpost After Confronting Campus Bully, HS Football Player Gets Suspended.
- Mike Liebler published the blogpost Conservative Student Is Victim Of ‘Racist Rape Apologist’ Attack Fliers.
- Mike Liebler published the blogpost Yik Yak app Putting Teens Behind Bars, Police Warn.
- Mike Liebler published the blogpost Hearing That Things Can Change Helps Teens Dodge Depression.
- Andrew Shivers just moved in. Take time to say hey.
- Daniel DeHart published the blogpost GIVEAWAY: Win a Framed “The Fault in Our Stars” FULL SIZE Movie Poster [Winner Chosen].
- Jeffrey Totey published the blogpost ‘Boxtrolls:’ Incredible Animation, Charmless Story.
- Jeffrey Totey published the blogpost Video of the Day: Dad Lip-Syncs Daughter's Tantrum.
- Michael Ernest published the blogpost SOTW: ‘Chasing After The Wind’ by Alan Powell (Free Friday Download).
- Matt Perman published the blogpost The Drive Video: If You Want Engagement, Self-Direction is Better.
- LuAnn Braley published the blogpost BOOK REVIEW/INTERVIEW: The Unexpected Earl by Philippa Jane Keyworth.
- Shane Blackshear published the blogpost Seminary Dropout 55: Gary Black Jr. – Co-author of The Divine Conspiracy Continued.
- Lori Fogleman published the blogpost ‘Believe Me': Alum’s thought-provoking film now in theaters.
- Michael Ramsey published the blogpost Stress Kills!!! Here's 3 Ways To Do Something About It.
- Larry Carter published the blogpost How The New Fall TV Season Reminds Me Of The Gospel.
- Brad Hambrick published the blogpost Overcoming Depression-Anxiety: A Suffering Paradigm (Seminar Videos).
- Brad Hambrick published the blogpost Overcoming Depression-Anxiety: A Personal Responsibility Paradigm (Seminar Videos).
- Brad Hambrick published the blogpost 20 Approaches to Battling Depression-Anxiety as Suffering.
- Daniel DeHart published the blogpost Review: ‘Hellion’ is A Wild, Family-Driven Ride Worth Taking.
- Daniel DeHart published the blogpost Review: ‘How to Train Your Dragon 2′ is Cool, Uncommitted.
- Daniel DeHart published the blogpost “Kidnapped for Christ” Review: The Terror of Teens.
- Daniel DeHart published the blogpost Review: ‘Guardians of the Galaxy’ Pieces Together a Winning Team.
- Ashley Howland published the blogpost Talking about cancer on WFAA’s ‘Two Chairs’ series.
- Daniel DeHart published the blogpost Get Excited: New ‘Believe Me’ Trailer Validates Everything We Thought.