North Carolina: A very religious state

I’ve always been interested in the insertion of religious beliefs into civic affairs. Even though the Bible says something, that doesn’t necessarily mean that the law of North Carolina should say the same thing. And because the Bible has so many interpretations, it has always seemed that reasonable people can disagree on how a passage reflects on the civic debate.

I have been thinking about it now especially in light of the debate raging in letters to the editor about whether God approves, disapproves or even addresses same-sex marriage.

Today a Gallup Poll sheds a bit of light on it. Half of North Carolinians say that religion is an important part of their daily life and that they attend religious services every week or almost every week. Wow. I admit to be surprised that 50% of the state’s residents attend church or a synagogue or mosque most every week. I would have thought it would be lower.

2 thoughts on “North Carolina: A very religious state

  1. It most likely is — a lot lower. Gallup has come up with a consistent figure for years: 40 percent of Americans go to church each week. But that number has repeatedly been challenged by sociologists who say that people tend to mischaracterize their responses. They’d like to think they go to church each week; in fact, they do not. Two sociologists who reframed the question and counted heads found that the real figure is much close to 20 percent.

  2. Yonat (Hi, Yonat!) beat me to it.

    I would add that it certainly is plausible that the “real” percentage is higher in N.C. than for the nation as a whole. But 50%? Not likely.

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