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1 dragonfire1981  Sun, Jun 26, 2011 9:23:51am

Where's the percentage of people who don't give a crap about a President's religion so long as he or she can do the job?

2 Achilles Tang  Sun, Jun 26, 2011 9:57:37am

re: #1 dragonfire1981

Where's the percentage of people who don't give a crap about a President's religion so long as he or she can do the job?

That would be something under 49%, who would vote for an atheist, since that is the minimum number that appears to have no biases, although some of those would probably also not vote for one or more of the other categories so the real number could be well under 49%.

The survey doesn't answer the question.

It could be under 5-10% (the estimated percentage of atheists), since even some atheists will be biased against the others.

3 Artist  Sun, Jun 26, 2011 10:03:32am

I think somebody screwed up there on the athetist and homosexual polls.
67 + 32 + 2 = 101
49 + 49 + 3 = 101

4 (I Stand By What I Said Whatever It Was)  Sun, Jun 26, 2011 10:34:58am

re: #3 SteelPH

I think somebody screwed up there on the athetist and homosexual polls.
67 + 32 + 2 = 101
49 + 49 + 3 = 101

Rounding errors. Pretty common in that field.

5 Artist  Sun, Jun 26, 2011 10:56:05am

re: #4 000G

I stand corrected!

6 CuriousLurker  Sun, Jun 26, 2011 10:56:45am

I wonder why there's such a strong bias against atheists?

Assuming the source used for the Wiki page is accurate, it can't all be religious if 83% of Americans claim to belong to a religious denomination, but only(!) 49% claim they wouldn't vote for an atheist.

I'm somewhat surprised to see Jewish fall between Baptist and Hispanic given that, according to the FBI stats for 2009, 71.9% of religious hate crimes were due to anti-Jewish bias. And that leaves out the more subtle and widespread forms of anti-Semitism.

7 Varek Raith  Sun, Jun 26, 2011 11:04:11am

re: #6 CuriousLurker

I wonder why there's such a strong bias against atheists?

Assuming the source used for the Wiki page is accurate, it can't all be religious if 83% of Americans claim to belong to a religious denomination, but only(!) 49% claim they wouldn't vote for an atheist.

I'm somewhat surprised to see Jewish fall between Baptist and Hispanic given that, according to the FBI stats for 2009, 71.9% of religious hate crimes were due to anti-Jewish bias. And that leaves out the more subtle and widespread forms of anti-Semitism.

Because we're frightening!
OOGA BOOGA!
/
:)

8 Etaoin Shrdlu  Sun, Jun 26, 2011 11:30:31am

re: #6 CuriousLurker

I wonder why there's such a strong bias against atheists?

I think it's the whole baby-eating thing, where the media took a handful of isolated incidents and blew them completely out of proportion.

9 CuriousLurker  Sun, Jun 26, 2011 11:32:11am

re: #8 Etaoin Shrdlu

I think it's the whole baby-eating thing, where the media took a handful of isolated incidents and blew them completely out of proportion.

Oh, THAT—I'd totally forgotten about it. LOL

10 CuriousLurker  Sun, Jun 26, 2011 11:43:56am

re: #7 Varek Raith

Because we're frightening!
OOGA BOOGA!
/
:)

Dude, I went googling for a "scary atheist" pic and it seems you have got nothin' on the Easter Bunny. *whimper*

11 Winny Spencer  Sun, Jun 26, 2011 11:47:08am

I'm Mormon by heritage and still care about the faith.

Disappointing but hardly surprising.

12 CarolJ  Sun, Jun 26, 2011 1:27:55pm

I suspect that those who wouldn't vote for a Jew wouldn't vote for the other categories as well. Judging from the numbers, I guess America just needs the Jewish equivalent of Obama to get a Jewish President.

Atheists will have to get past those who have memories of Madelyn Murray O'Hare to get past 50%, and some of the more bombastic ones like Harris.

13 jc717  Sun, Jun 26, 2011 1:43:04pm

I'm actually shocked that the Atheist number is only 49%.
I would have guessed that it would be much higher. Progress!!!

14 Prononymous, rogue demon hunter  Sun, Jun 26, 2011 1:58:09pm

Christians will have to get past those who have memories of Fred Phelps to get past 50%, and some of the more bombastic ones like Pat Robertson.

15 EiMitch  Sun, Jun 26, 2011 6:47:59pm

49% won't vote for us atheists, huh? What, have we got ethereal cooties?

Do you think that supernatural hypocrites have a monopoly on morality? Like Gingrich and the Koch brothers?

Do you still believe that cold-war era McCarthy bullcrap about how anyone who doesn't believe in god is a Marxist taking orders from the Kremlin? But if you're expecting everyone to think the same or else be cast out, then what right have you to label anyone "socialist" or "communist"?

Or maybe, because I oppose fundies trying to cram the bible down my throat, you think that means I'm out to take your bible from you? Because there are no middle-ground options like "live and let live, and let each believe what they will"?

Perhaps, you think that if everyone was an evolution denying, bible-pounding, gay-bashing, xenophobic fundie, then everyone would magically return to being decent, moral people? Is your idea of morality all about people's beliefs, and little about how we treat one another?

Seriously, grow up right-wingers. The causes of, and solutions to, societies problems are not that simple. Nor have they ever been. Otherwise, we wouldn't have called western civilizations most devout times "The Dark Ages."

16 b_sharp  Sun, Jun 26, 2011 6:51:20pm

re: #6 CuriousLurker

I wonder why there's such a strong bias against atheists?

Assuming the source used for the Wiki page is accurate, it can't all be religious if 83% of Americans claim to belong to a religious denomination, but only(!) 49% claim they wouldn't vote for an atheist.

I'm somewhat surprised to see Jewish fall between Baptist and Hispanic given that, according to the FBI stats for 2009, 71.9% of religious hate crimes were due to anti-Jewish bias. And that leaves out the more subtle and widespread forms of anti-Semitism.

Apparently, we have no moral compass.

17 CuriousLurker  Sun, Jun 26, 2011 7:31:59pm

re: #16 b_sharp

Apparently, we have no moral compass.

I keep forgetting about that. Most of you guys seem so decent & rational that it's easy to forget what degenerates you are. I have one, but since I'm Muslim that means it's all effed up and spins crazily out of control.

Hey, I heard Bryan Fischer has a big shiny one with a really strong magnet. Maybe if we go visit him he can give you one of his and repair mine. ///

18 Gus  Sun, Jun 26, 2011 8:02:12pm

Since we're going down the rabbit hole regarding why people remain biased against atheists as potential presidential candidate I thought I'd post this awkward and poorly put together analysis on some of the reasoning as written by Michael Medved. This was in response to a similar poll done by Zogby in 2008.

Americans Are Right To Resist An Atheist As President
Michael Medved

Despite the recent spate of major bestsellers touting the virtues of atheism, polls show consistent, stubborn reluctance on the part of the public to cast their votes for a presidential candidate who denies the existence of God.

[...]

It’s no accident that all three remaining Presidential contenders speak passionately and extensively about their faiths and all three (McCain, Obama, Clinton) identify themselves as serious, faithful, regularly praying Christians. Meanwhile, the members of Congress may hardly qualify as saintly or angelic, but of the 535 men and women in the House and Senate, only one (the shameless radical rabble-rouser Fortney “Pete” Stark of Oakland, California) openly describes himself as an atheist.

[...]

Actually, there’s little chance that atheists will succeed in placing one of their own in the White House at any time in the foreseeable future, and it continues to make powerful sense for voters to shun potential presidents who deny the existence of God. An atheist may be a good person, a good politician, a good family man (or woman), and even a good patriot, but a publicly proclaimed non-believer as president would, for three reasons, be bad for the country.

Hollowness and Hypocrisy at State Occasions. As Constitutional scholars all point out, the Presidency uniquely combines the two functions of head of government (like the British Prime Minister) and head of state (like the Queen of England). POTUS not only appoints cabinet members and shapes foreign policy and delivers addresses to Congress, but also presides over solemn and ceremonial occasions. Just as the Queen plays a formal role as head of the Church of England, the President functions as head of the “Church of America” – that informal, tolerant but profoundly important civic religion that dominates all our national holidays and historic milestones. For instance, try to imagine an atheist president issuing the annual Thanksgiving proclamation. To whom would he extend thanks in the name of his grateful nation –-the Indians in Massachusetts?

[...]

Disconnecting from the People. The United States remains a profoundly, uniquely religious society: “a nation with the soul of a church” in Tocqueville’s durable phrase. A president need not embrace one of the nation’s leading faiths: the public accepted two Quaker presidents (Hoover and Nixon) despite the tiny number of our citizens who identify with the Society of Friends, and polling on candidates like Romney and Lieberman indicated that the their devout membership in minority religions hardly disqualified them. There’s a difference between an atheist, however, and a Mormon or a Jew – despite the fact that the same U.S. population (about five million) claims membership in each of the three groups.

[...]

19 Gus  Sun, Jun 26, 2011 8:05:03pm

And the third reason which of course is in regard to the usual Bible thumper's hallucinatory assessment of how atheists see anti-Jihadism.

Winning the War on Islamo-Nazism. On one level, at least, the ongoing war on terror represents a furious battle of ideas and we face devastating handicaps if we attempt to beat something with nothing. Modern secularism rejects the notion that human beings feel a deep-seated, unquenchable craving for making connections with Godliness, in its various definitions and manifestations. For Osama bin Laden and other jihadist preachers, Islam understands that yearning but “infidel” America does not. Our enemies insist that God plays the central role in the current war and that they affirm and defend him, while we reject and ignore him. The proper response to such assertions involves the citation of our religious traditions and commitments, and the credible argument that embrace of modernity, tolerance and democracy need not lead to godless materialism. In this context, an atheist president conforms to the most hostile anti-America stereotypes of Islamic fanatics and makes it that much harder to appeal to Muslim moderates whose cooperation (or at least neutrality) we very much need. The charge that our battle amounts to a “war against Islam” seems more persuasive when an openly identified non-believer leads our side—after all, President Atheist says he believes in nothing, so it’s easy to assume that he leads a war against belief itself. A conventional adherent of Judeo-Christian faith can, on the other hand, make the case that our fight constitutes of an effort to defend our own way of life, not a war to suppress some alternative – and that way of life includes a specific sort of free-wheeling, open-minded religiosity that has blessed this nation and could also bless the nations of the Middle East.

In response to the current rejection of a potential atheist president, secular enthusiasts may insist that some of our past leaders actually fit in to the long tradition of free-thinking and unorthodox religiosity – making it likely that we’ve already had a (mostly quiet) atheist president. That assumption, however, flies in the face of the evidence: the status of several founding fathers as so-called “Deists,” for instance, might make them less than conventional Christians, but hardly identified them as non-believers. Even Jefferson, in many ways the most daring theological thinker ever to occupy the White House, made a point of convening Christian church services in the Capitol Building and attending them regularly. Whatever their disagreements about miracles, the trinity, and the inerrancy of Scripture, the Founders certainly agreed about the usefulness and blessings associated with a faithful and Biblically-literate populace. Thomas Paine and even Ben Franklin might question some elements of traditional Christianity, but all the Constitutional fathers expressed unwavering faith in the necessity of a religious population in order to sustain their republican experiment.

[...]

20 b_sharp  Sun, Jun 26, 2011 8:06:05pm

re: #17 CuriousLurker

I keep forgetting about that. Most of you guys seem so decent & rational that it's easy to forget what degenerates you are. I have one, but since I'm Muslim that means it's all effed up and spins crazily out of control.

Hey, I heard Bryan Fischer has a big shiny one with a really strong magnet. Maybe if we go visit him he can give you one of his and repair mine. ///

Nah. I just pin him to a wall and torture him with the FSM. It's what we atheists do.

21 b_sharp  Sun, Jun 26, 2011 8:10:30pm

re: #18 Gus 802

I've listened to Medved several times on the subject of religion/atheism. He's an idiot.

22 Gus  Sun, Jun 26, 2011 8:12:50pm

re: #21 b_sharp

I've listened to Medved several times on the subject of religion/atheism. He's an idiot.

Amazing isn't it? I'll highlight this passage, I mean stupidity:

A conventional adherent of Judeo-Christian faith can, on the other hand, make the case that our fight constitutes of an effort to defend our own way of life, not a war to suppress some alternative – and that way of life includes a specific sort of free-wheeling, open-minded religiosity that has blessed this nation and could also bless the nations of the Middle East.

23 b_sharp  Sun, Jun 26, 2011 8:16:07pm

re: #22 Gus 802

Amazing isn't it? I'll highlight this passage, I mean stupidity:

The man is oblivious to his own words. He's an obliviot.

24 EiMitch  Sun, Jun 26, 2011 9:40:49pm

MM is such a moron. His "3 reasons" are just unimaginative reiterations of just 1 argument: that his prejudice against atheists is self-justifying.

According to him, no value or idea counts or even exists, unless god is attached to it. His definition of "open-minded" is: Orwellian buzzword used to convince suckers that you're not demanding conformity.

25 shutdown  Sun, Jun 26, 2011 11:47:52pm

I have to admit that I, too, would have to hesitate before pulling the lever in favour of a practising Mor...- oh, wait. Never mind. It says Mormon; I thought it said Moron.

26 CarolJ  Mon, Jun 27, 2011 5:03:19pm

re: #15 EiMitchI don't, but there is a broad swath of older Americans who do, and of course there are younger fundamentalists as well who also vote. Whatever O'Hare's beliefs were, she was no expert at public relations and I think needlessly alienated a lot of people by her style and attitude. She practically invented the image of the atheist as a hectoring kill-joy and antisocial clod. Younger, more affable types who have a more "whatever gets you through the night" attitude towards people who have religion or some sort of a belief system, and who focus on their own freedom much more, will help get past the 50%. Even then, I suspect the first openly atheist President will still give more than a nod to tradition, just as the British Royal Family gives nod to tradition, whatever their private beliefs happen to be.


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