Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Kentucky: Southern Bastion of Secularism...? Really?

The new issue of Skeptical Inquirer has a note about the findings of the 2008 American Religious Identification Survey (or ARIS). While the SI article was mainly interest in the survey is the overall increase in non-religious folk, something else caught my eye. Something surprising...

According to the Trinity College researchers that conducted the ARIS, Kentucky is the most secular state in the south! 13% of Kentuckians responding to ARIS in 2008 stated that they either had no religious preference or considered themselves to be agnostic/atheist. That's still well below states like Vermont, New Hampshire, and even Ohio (34, 29, and 17% respectively), but it also indicates that the number of secularists in Kentucky has nearly doubled since 1990 and is now nearly equal to the number of Catholics. I guess now I can quit bellyaching about how weird it is to be an atheist in Kentucky...which in a way is kind of a pity because that's one of my go-to topics.

Anyone interested in checking out the entire report on ARIS can do so here.

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