Sunday, December 22, 2013

The State of Religion In America Today

It ain't what it used to be:

Religion in America’s states and counties, in 6 maps
[...] With what is arguably the most widely observed holiday of the nation’s most popular religion right around the corner, now seems as good a time as any to look at the state of religion in America’s states and counties. All six of the maps and data below—which depict religious popularity, diversity and adherents—come from the “2010 U.S. Religion Census: Religious Congregations & Membership Study,” an every-decade research effort sponsored by the Association of Statisticians of American Religious Bodies, which gathers statistics for religious groups or scholars interested in such. [...]
Fascinating maps, of interesting categories.

The Telegraph newspaper examines some of the data in detail:

Lots of atheists, more Muslims, fewer Christians and Jews: this is the new America
[...] Did you know there are – possibly – now more religious Muslims than religious Jews in Florida? I know, it seems incredible. Miami Beach has had 15 Jewish mayors, there are getting on for 200 synagogues in South Florida – and, of course, it was the hunting ground of the despicable Bernie Madoff.


There are still more Jews than Muslims in Florida, loosely defined; these figures measure Judaism as a religion. That said, even to compare the two 20 years ago would have seemed ridiculous. Florida has a small but vibrant, growing Muslim community, half of it from India, followed by Pakistanis – only 150,000 registered voters to date. As you'd expect, 80 per cent voted for Obama in the last two elections; but in other elections they're swing voters, and in Florida you ignore those at your peril. As for the Jewish community, the retirement communities are reflecting the national picture. [...]
Read the whole thing for more interesting facts, figures and maps. And guess what is the most popular non-Christian religion in the American West? No wonder I love living out here. I can feel it.

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