16th April 2014

“The more evenly divided a culture finds itself on the ultimate questions, the more likely politicians are to pursue 'strategic extremism' and mobilize one side against the other. Precisely this kind of polarization dominated European politics from the French Revolution until the middle of the 20th century, sparking regular clashes – Germany's Kulturkampf, France's Dreyfuss Affair, Spain's Civil War – between secular and religious ideologies. In other words, unless conservative religiosity goes into a steeper decline than is visible in the latest data the growth of 'Godless America' may only make the culture wars hotter over the short run.”

Ross Douthat