31st March 2011

“The strongly theistic, anti-evolution South and Midwest [states of the USA] have markedly worse homicide, mortality, sexually transmitted disease, youth pregnancy, marital and related problems than the North-East, where societal conditions, secularisation and acceptance of evolution approach European norms.”

Gregory Paul

11 Responses to “31st March 2011”

  1. r j Says:

    this comes as a surprise??????

  2. Thinker Says:

    While I would love for this to be true, I need to see the actual data. Anyone have some relevant links?

  3. Jezebel Says:

    Thinker, I don’t have any data on this. However, according to every documentary or article I’ve seen about serial killers, most of them have come from strictly religious families.

  4. Atheist MC Says:

    If anyone has the time or inclination, a trawl through here might enlighten.

  5. Atheist MC Says:

    Just had a quick look at the murder rates for the link above (I’m supposed to be working ffs) and the preponderance of high mrder rates is in southern or bible belt states.

  6. Xam Says:

    While it would be understandable, given the source of Christianity, e.g., the bible contains much immorality, could be the source of such behaviors, it is erroneous to assume that correlation equals causation.

  7. Atheist MC Says:

    I don’t think anyone is suggesting causality per se. But given the theist assumption that to be religious is to be moral, it is an interesting correlation to say the least.

  8. Jeff Says:

    Just an perspective on that last:

    Who will be more protective of the lives of fellow humans? One who believes that to take that life is consigning the person to oblivion, or one who believes that to do so is to send them to their ultimate reward or punishment?

  9. reetBob Says:

    @Jezebel, serial killers are almost always psychopathic, I’ve never heard of being religious as a prerequisite. Psychopaths are universally devious though, taking on whichever mask allows them to appear moral. I often wonder how many end up in the church. All that authority and all those secrets must draw them like a burning bush draws a moth in the dark.

  10. CaptainZero Says:

    Thanks for the stats AMC. I split the data by the last Presidential election and the results were surprising. The D states were actually collectively worse than the R states. A major part is the D.C. effect. D.C. is so bad it skews the picture seriously. To the quote’s point, sorting by total violent crime, you see southern red states disproportionately highly ranked and the new england states disproportionately ranked low. Also, religious belief does correlate with higher divorce rates. I think we’ve seen the stats here previously. I think there is a case to be made that belief, especially christian belief promotes an atmosphere of bad behavior. Or at my most charitable christian belief certainly does not moderate behavior to a significant degree.

  11. greateighthsin Says:

    Living in the northwest (Seattle, Washington), it’s extremely secular and liberal here. Everybody minds their own business and it’s rare to have someone knocking on your door proselytizing the “good word”. When I went south, this was amazingly different. You not only see the marks of poverty and violence, but the number of churches on every corner is astounding (for every 1 here, there’s 5 there) and you see crazies holding the “end is near” signs on every few blocks. It’s even rare to not see someone brandishing a cross on some form of jewelry. Couple all that in with still severe racial issues and it’s no surprise it’s like that.