Wednesday, December 10, 2008
The Harris Poll released a new nationwide survey of 2,126 U.S. adults surveyed online between November 10 and 17, 2008. Some of the results:
-- 80% of adult Americans believe in God - unchanged since the last time we asked the question in 2005. Large majorities of the public believe in miracles (75%), heaven (73%), angels (71%), that Jesus is God or the Son of God (71%), the resurrection of Jesus (70%), the survival of the soul after death (68%), hell (62%), the Virgin birth (Jesus born of Mary) (61%) and the devil (59%).
-- Slightly more people - but both are minorities - believe in Darwin's theory of evolution (47%) than in creationism (40%).
-- Sizeable minorities believe in ghosts (44%), UFOs (36%), witches (31%), astrology (31%), and reincarnation (24%).
-- Catholics are more likely than Protestants to believe in Darwin's theory of evolution (by 52% to 32%), ghosts (by 57% to 41%), UFOs (by 43% to 31%), and astrology (by 40% to 28%). Protestants are slightly more likely than Catholics to believe in creationism (by 54% to 46%).
But maybe this is the most telling result of the poll:
-- only 26% of all adults believe that the Torah is the word of God, even though it is the same as the first five books of the Old Testament. Presumably many people do not know this.
I doubt that a single Founding Father could've been elected as President in the past few election cycles. Would be interesting to do a hypothetical match-up between some of our best Presidents and some of the worst dictators, much like what that poll did with the Bill of Rights. I wonder how these folks would feel having voted for Hitler?