Study Shows Religion Has A Negative Correlation to Social Functionality

CivilLiberty

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Study Shows Religion Has A Negative Correlation to Social Functionality


A recent paper by Gregory S. Paul in the Journal of Religion and Society shows and interesting correlation between social dysfunction (crime, STDs, teenage pregnancy, etc) and religion.

While many religious adherents make the claim that "religion is good for society", this paper shows that the reverse is true:

http://moses.creighton.edu/JRS/2005/2005-11.html

[18] In general, higher rates of belief in and worship of a creator correlate with higher rates of homicide, juvenile and early adult mortality, STD infection rates, teen pregnancy, and abortion in the prosperous democracies (Figures 1-9). The most theistic prosperous democracy, the U.S., is exceptional, but not in the manner Franklin predicted. The United States is almost always the most dysfunctional of the developed democracies, sometimes spectacularly so, and almost always scores poorly. The view of the U.S. as a “shining city on the hill” to the rest of the world is falsified when it comes to basic measures of societal health. Youth suicide is an exception to the general trend because there is not a significant relationship between it and religious or secular factors. No democracy is known to have combined strong religiosity and popular denial of evolution with high rates of societal health. Higher rates of non-theism and acceptance of human evolution usually correlate with lower rates of dysfunction, and the least theistic nations are usually the least dysfunctional. None of the strongly secularized, pro-evolution democracies is experiencing high levels of measurable dysfunction. In some cases the highly religious U.S. is an outlier in terms of societal dysfunction from less theistic but otherwise socially comparable secular developed democracies. In other cases, the correlations are strongly graded, sometimes outstandingly so.

[19] If the data showed that the U.S. enjoyed higher rates of societal health than the more secular, pro-evolution democracies, then the opinion that popular belief in a creator is strongly beneficial to national cultures would be supported. Although they are by no means utopias, the populations of secular democracies are clearly able to govern themselves and maintain societal cohesion. Indeed, the data examined in this study demonstrates that only the more secular, pro-evolution democracies have, for the first time in history, come closest to achieving practical “cultures of life” that feature low rates of lethal crime, juvenile-adult mortality, sex related dysfunction, and even abortion. The least theistic secular developed democracies such as Japan, France, and Scandinavia have been most successful in these regards. The non-religious, pro-evolution democracies contradict the dictum that a society cannot enjoy good conditions unless most citizens ardently believe in a moral creator. The widely held fear that a Godless citizenry must experience societal disaster is therefore refuted. Contradicting these conclusions requires demonstrating a positive link between theism and societal conditions in the first world with a similarly large body of data - a doubtful possibility in view of the observable trends.


In his column, Martin Foreman makes this point:

http://www.humaniststudies.org/enews/index.html?id=219&article=7

Consciously or subconsciously, those who are "born again" or "chosen" have diminished respect for others who do not share their sect or their faith. Convinced that only the Bible offers "truth", they lose their intellectual curiosity and their ability to reason. Their priority becomes not the world they live in but themselves.

Indeed, in my study of the bible, I've read that it supports a "chosen one superiority", wherein the "chosen ones" have the right to annihilate the "non-chosen" ones. I'd submit that this attitude is at least partly behind much of the non-secular violence we see in the world today.


Andy
 

musicman

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CivilLiberty said:
From the first article (the link to which - BTW - I couldn't get to work; no big deal, though - I get the gist of it):"Higher rates of non-theism and acceptance of human evolution usually correlate with lower rates of dysfunction, and the least theistic nations are usually the least dysfunctional. None of the strongly secularized, pro-evolution democracies is experiencing high levels of measurable dysfunction. In some cases the highly religious U.S. is an outlier in terms of societal dysfunction from less theistic but otherwise socially comparable secular developed democracies. In other cases, the correlations are strongly graded, sometimes outstandingly so.

[19] If the data showed that the U.S. enjoyed higher rates of societal health than the more secular, pro-evolution democracies, then the opinion that popular belief in a creator is strongly beneficial to national cultures would be supported. Although they are by no means utopias, the populations of secular democracies are clearly able to govern themselves and maintain societal cohesion."
The conclusions here are necessarily flawed; they do not take all the important factors into consideration. Case in point: the "more secular, pro-evolution democracies" have, for the last sixty years, been allowed to exist - indeed, thrive - in economic and military unreality. They didn't have to expend their blood and treasure defending themselves against the principal threat of the postwar age - Soviet expansionism. Their dysfunctional cowboy pals across the pond(s) took care of all that.

In regard to Post-Christian Europe, at any rate - that addled, fat, self- satisfied beast born of assured security (and the inevitable laziness that follows such waking dreams) - I don't know that this was the kindest course for America to take. Whatever else you say about theistic societies, you have to admit that they're tough sons of bitches - always ready to defend themselves in the here and now. Can as much be said of Post-Christian Europe, in the face of the principal threat of THIS age - Islamofascism? Doesn't look that way to me; seems they're already looking for a place to lay down.

Perhaps being a "more secular, pro-evolution democracy" is a luxury that can be enjoyed only in the context of a strong, moral, God-fearing people who stand ready to face reality, and do the dirty work.
 

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I hear that Chinese anthropologists, free from all of the political BS taking place here, have said that Christianity is responsible for the prosperity of the west. If I can get a link, I'll post it.
 

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I hear that Chinese anthropologists, free from all of the political BS taking place here, have said that Christianity is responsible for the prosperity of the west. If I can get a link, I'll post it.
It is responsible for the prosperity of the west. The Protestant work ethic for example is one of the things that has made the western world great (Unfortunately its been lost).

The Bible is another thing that has helped our prosperity, not because of the morals (which of course has benefited the west), but because without the Bible the western literacy rate may never shot up once the printing press was built. A little known fact is there was actually a printing press in Korea prior to Europe. But it didnt have the same results as in the west. Because there was nothing all the population wanted to read. In the mostly Christian west, everyone, especially the lower classes of people taught themselves to read in order to study the Bible. The process wasnt immediate but the Bible was the catalyst.

Heck, the west wouldnt even exist anymore if it wasnt for the United States and does anyone honestly believe the United States could have been formed as it is without all the people who fled from religious persecution in Europe in hopes of freedom in the New World?

I think there are alot of people who want to dismiss religion outright so they wont look at the rich history that it has helped create.
 

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"True believers", whose rigid adherence to religious dogma blinds them to any other alternative, often lack the basic skills needed to function effectively in society. Namely the abilitiy to see another's point of view and strike a compromise...as in finding the middle ground, not in submission to another's will.

Also, individuals of this disposition aren't satisfied with mere respect for their religious views...They want them enforced. When religious dogma is given the force of law democracy becomes a thing of the past and totalitarianism, in the guise of religion, takes root. This is also known as a theocracy.
 

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"True believers", whose rigid adherence to religious dogma blinds them to any other alternative, often lack the basic skills needed to function effectively in society. Namely the abilitiy to see another's point of view and strike a compromise...as in finding the middle ground, not in submission to another's will.

Also, individuals of this disposition aren't satisfied with mere respect for their religious views...They want them enforced. When religious dogma is given the force of law democracy becomes a thing of the past and totalitarianism, in the guise of religion, takes root. This is also known as a theocracy.

That's also known as pro-homosexual agenda, liberals, and the KKK.

"Tolerants", whose rigid adherence to homosexual dogma blinds them to any other alternative, often lack the basic skills needed to function effectively in society. Namely the abilitiy to see another's point of view and strike a compromise...as in finding the middle ground, not in submission to another's will.

Also, individuals of this disposition aren't satisfied with mere respect for their homosexual views...They want them enforced. When homosexual dogma is given the force of law democracy becomes a thing of the past and totalitarianism, in the guise of Tolerance, takes root. This is also known as Fascism.

"Liberals", whose rigid adherence to liberal dogma blinds them to any other alternative, often lack the basic skills needed to function effectively in society. Namely the abilitiy to see another's point of view and strike a compromise...as in finding the middle ground, not in submission to another's will.

Also, individuals of this disposition aren't satisfied with mere respect for their liberal views...They want them enforced. When liberal dogma is given the force of law democracy becomes a thing of the past and totalitarianism, in the guise of Tolerance, takes root. This is also known as Fascism.

etc...
 

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I would like to see his list of "prosperous democracies" to determine who he is comaring with the United States.

Canada, UK, Japan, .....???
 

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"True believers", whose rigid adherence to religious dogma blinds them to any other alternative, often lack the basic skills needed to function effectively in society. Namely the abilitiy to see another's point of view and strike a compromise...as in finding the middle ground, not in submission to another's will.

Also, individuals of this disposition aren't satisfied with mere respect for their religious views...They want them enforced. When religious dogma is given the force of law democracy becomes a thing of the past and totalitarianism, in the guise of religion, takes root. This is also known as a theocracy.
And how many theocracies has the West produced?
 

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And how many theocracies has the West produced?
Well, let's see. There was Spain, and then there was, uh, I'll get back to you.

Most of the rest that people see as 'theocracies,' such as England, was more the state running the church than the other way around.
 
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CivilLiberty

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I hear that Chinese anthropologists, free from all of the political BS taking place here, have said that Christianity is responsible for the prosperity of the west. If I can get a link, I'll post it.

I'd like to see that - please post it if you can find it.

A
 

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That's also known as pro-homosexual agenda, liberals, and the KKK.







etc...
Let's see..."Liberal Fascism"--a contradiction in terms. "Rigid adherence" to "Tolerance?" I can't really understand how tolerating others can be labeled as "rigid adherence" to a "dogma" or how it could have negative connotations. Legal enforcement of homosexuality? What country do you live in? This sounds like a line from the SNL skit "Gays in Space."

Why do you hate homosexuals so much? And who was your fifth-grade social studies teacher? He/she should've taught you the difference between left and right-wing ideologies. And what's wrong with tolerating other people? :huh:
 

dmp

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Let's see..."Liberal Fascism"--a contradiction in terms.
It's not - not in terms of "Liberals" - who aren't into Liberalism, or if they ARE it's only Liberalism which they APPROVE of - which doesnt OFFEND...It's Their way, or Jail - at the extreme end.

"Rigid adherence" to "Tolerance?" I can't really understand how tolerating others can be labeled as "rigid adherence" to a "dogma" or how it could have negative connotations. Legal enforcement of homosexuality? What country do you live in? This sounds like a line from the SNL skit "Gays in Space."
Akin to Liberalism above - "Tolerance" is a Faith nowadays. The Tolerance Movement adheres to a dogma of "Do it OUR way! Accept and revere Other opinions, as LONG as they aren't those of Christians or white males." You are fooling yourself if you don't see that.

Why do you hate homosexuals so much? And who was your fifth-grade social studies teacher? He/she should've taught you the difference between left and right-wing ideologies. And what's wrong with tolerating other people? :huh:

I LOVE homosexuals, as people because I generally LOVE people. I HATE Homophiles who shove homosexual agendas upon our society. If it were MERELY tolerance Liberals were after, that'd be one thing. But, my friend, it's NOT tolerance Homophiles are after - it's Acceptance and Validity and Agreement with their behaviour choices.
 

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"Rigid adherence" to "Tolerance?" I can't really understand how tolerating others can be labeled as "rigid adherence" to a "dogma" or how it could have negative connotations.
This happens when the definition of "tolerance" is changed (in usage) to mean "Embracing MY point of view."

It's kind of like what happened down South, with the word "Coke." Everyone up north understands that a "Coke" is a cola beverage produced by the Coca-Cola corporation. But down South... even though they SAY "Coke," they really MEAN a variety of carbonated beverages.

They haven't changed the dictionaries, but what they MEAN by "tolerance" doesn't exactly match what you might find in Webster's.

:)
 
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Hagbard Celine

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It's not - not in terms of "Liberals" - who aren't into Liberalism, or if they ARE it's only Liberalism which they APPROVE of - which doesnt OFFEND...It's Their way, or Jail - at the extreme end.

Akin to Liberalism above - "Tolerance" is a Faith nowadays. The Tolerance Movement adheres to a dogma of "Do it OUR way! Accept and revere Other opinions, as LONG as they aren't those of Christians or white males." You are fooling yourself if you don't see that.

I LOVE homosexuals, as people because I generally LOVE people. I HATE Homophiles who shove homosexual agendas upon our society. If it were MERELY tolerance Liberals were after, that'd be one thing. But, my friend, it's NOT tolerance Homophiles are after - it's Acceptance and Validity and Agreement with their behaviour choices.
Conservatism is also a faith in your definition of the word, however I've seen you and others who share your point of view adhere to much stricter definitions when it suits your side of the argument. I could replace the words "Liberals" and "Homophiles" with "Conservatives" and "Neo-con Christians" just as you did in the post above and it would have the same meaning. There's a radical for every ideology. That's nothing new. Is this post just a soapbox sermon about your chosen radical groups to hate? "Homophiles" and "Liberals?" I take a small amount of offense with the latter. I consider myself a person with liberal views and though I may seem a bit pushy at times on this board, I certainly don't try to force my views onto others in real life. I think your hositility is a little over the top and your views about "Liberals" are myopic.
 

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Conservatism is also a faith in your definition of the word, however I've seen you and others who share your point of view adhere to much stricter definitions when it suits your side of the argument. I could replace the words "Liberals" and "Homophiles" with "Conservatives" and "Neo-con Christians" just as you did in the post above and it would have the same meaning. There's a radical for every ideology. That's nothing new.
Difference is... conservative Christians don't deny HAVING an ideology. :)
 

Hagbard Celine

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Difference is... conservative Christians don't deny HAVING an ideology. :)
It's impossible to not have an ideology. Even nihilists, who don't care about or believe in anything, have an ideology based on not believing in anything.
 

theHawk

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Let's see..."Liberal Fascism"--a contradiction in terms. "Rigid adherence" to "Tolerance?" I can't really understand how tolerating others can be labeled as "rigid adherence" to a "dogma" or how it could have negative connotations. Legal enforcement of homosexuality? What country do you live in? This sounds like a line from the SNL skit "Gays in Space."

Why do you hate homosexuals so much? And who was your fifth-grade social studies teacher? He/she should've taught you the difference between left and right-wing ideologies. And what's wrong with tolerating other people? :huh:
Because it isn't "tolerance".....

http://www.usmessageboard.com/forums/showthread.php?t=35335
 

dmp

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Conservatism is also a faith in your definition of the word, however I've seen you and others who share your point of view adhere to much stricter definitions when it suits your side of the argument. I could replace the words "Liberals" and "Homophiles" with "Conservatives" and "Neo-con Christians" just as you did in the post above and it would have the same meaning. There's a radical for every ideology. That's nothing new. Is this post just a soapbox sermon about your chosen radical groups to hate? "Homophiles" and "Liberals?" I take a small amount of offense with the latter. I consider myself a person with liberal views and though I may seem a bit pushy at times on this board, I certainly don't try to force my views onto others in real life. I think your hositility is a little over the top and your views about "Liberals" are myopic.

I'm not arguing some people who claim Christ, or claim to be Conservative don't share in the ideas expressed in changing Bully's words - I'm saying for him to single out what he did is denying what he said could be true of MOST groups - except Normal conservatives LOVE free-speech and the responsibilities which go along with the idea. I don't know many liberals who feel the same.
 

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It is responsible for the prosperity of the west. The Protestant work ethic for example is one of the things that has made the western world great (Unfortunately its been lost).

The Bible is another thing that has helped our prosperity, not because of the morals (which of course has benefited the west), but because without the Bible the western literacy rate may never shot up once the printing press was built. A little known fact is there was actually a printing press in Korea prior to Europe. But it didnt have the same results as in the west. Because there was nothing all the population wanted to read. In the mostly Christian west, everyone, especially the lower classes of people taught themselves to read in order to study the Bible. The process wasnt immediate but the Bible was the catalyst.

Heck, the west wouldnt even exist anymore if it wasnt for the United States and does anyone honestly believe the United States could have been formed as it is without all the people who fled from religious persecution in Europe in hopes of freedom in the New World?

I think there are alot of people who want to dismiss religion outright so they wont look at the rich history that it has helped create.
I doubt that we can create a scientific and statistical study of what has made America so wealthy and powerful. I think that many factors have influenced America. The protestant work ethic is probably one such factor. Another factor may be slave labor. Another factor may be the fertile land that was practically taken from those who were here before the European immigrants arrived. There are probably many more factors too.
 

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