Pew and the media have a history of spinning Pew polls to attack people of faith. One study by Pew falselyimplied that atheists have more religious knowledge than do religious people. Another appeared to show that Americans are abandoning belief in God by combining people who believe in God but who aren’t part of an organized religion with atheists and agnostics. Pew calls this hodgepodge group “nones,” apparently to imply that they are lacking in faith, but the reality is that only a small part of this group actually lacks a belief in God – which a close reading of the Pew reports shows that even Pew agrees with.
Pew raises that old canard again in claiming that Americans have gotten less religious under Obama. The reality is that while the percentages of atheists and agnostics have stayed low, many religious people are saying they’re not affiliated with a particular faith.
Basically, the “nones” are an example, in large part, of people either rejecting formal church structures or people for whom religion is not a major part of their lives, not people who deny the existence of God.
Pew apparently tries to inflate the number of truly non-religious people in America by writing:
When it comes to the nation’s religious identity, the biggest trend during Obama’s presidency is the rise of those who claim no religion at all. Those who self-identify as atheists or agnostics, as well as those who say their religion is “nothing in particular,” now make up nearly a quarter of the U.S. adult population, up from 16% in 2007. When it comes to the nation’s religious identity, the biggest trend during Obama’s presidency is the rise of those who claim no religion at all. Those who self-identify as atheists or agnostics, as well as those who say their religion is “nothing in particular,” now make up nearly a quarter of the U.S. adult population, up from 16% in 2007.
Essentially, by adding people not affiliated with a particular denomination and those who don’t think religion is an important part of their lives to the 3.1% of Americans who reject God, Pew seems to be trying to convince us that religion in America is rapidly dying. After all, it would be pretty earth-shaking if 25% of Americans no longer believed in God.
Clearly, if people were really rejecting God in great numbers, one would expect to see a far greater growth in the number of atheists. Yet atheists are a minuscule portion of the American population.
This is a standard liberal tactic of using fake news to convince people they don’t agree with – conservatives and Christians, for example – that hardly anyone is like them, and everyone is like the liberals.
By attempting to make it embarrassing to admit being Christian, liberals are trying to drive religions other than their own materialistic hedonism out of the public square.
Just as liberals try to silence the voices pointing out the racism of Democrat policies by labeling all who don’t toe the liberal line racists, they use Pew’s results to make it uncool to profess one’s faith.
Of course, that tends to distort poll results, just as the polls missed the support for Trump because people didn’t want to publicly admit supporting him.
While Obama did work hard to persecute religious people during his eight years in office, there is no data to support any massive change in American’s traditional deep-seated religious beliefs. People of faith are not dodos, nor are they on the verge of extinction. After all, Pew admits that 71% of Americans are Christians – hardly a minority.
To be fair, Pew’s most extreme claims appear in their titles, and a close reading of the actual material reveals a number of hedging comments. But given that it’s the headlines that drive the narrative in many cases, the reality is that Pew certainly appears to be distorting the implications of its polls in a manner designed to normalize the liberal narrative and ostracize those who reject the bicoastal elites’ beliefs.
Pew’s spinning is probably the result of its staff being trapped in the east-coast elite liberal bubble rather than any deliberate intent to mislead, just as the Washington Post’s failure to cover a pro-life march in D.C., which featured hundreds of thousands of protesters, wasn’t because of deliberate bias, but because no one on the Post’s editorial team is pro-life, and none of them even knew anyone who is pro-life. Because no one in the Post’s bubble knew that the massive protest was going to occur, the Post didn’t even know there was anything to cover until after the march had occurred.
Irrespective of the cause, however, the key take away is that one should never trust any conclusions that Pew puts forth on any topic. You need to dig down into the details to see what their data really says to ensure that you aren’t getting fake news.