Daily Archives: September 28, 2005

New study shows religion is bad for society 1

A new study published in the Journal of Religion and Society shows that religion is not necessary for a moral, healthy society. In fact, all the evidence seems to point to a direct relationship between how religious a society is and rates of violent crime, abortion, early mortality, std rates and teen pregnancy. People in developed countries that are more secular have less crime, live longer and have fewer societal ill in general. Maybe when people people realize that they are responsible for the well being of their society, rather than some amorphous god with a “grand plan” they start to behave in a way that is better for the health of the society as a whole. They do things to make the lives of their citizens better, like make sure that they have health care, and conserve natural resources.

The United States is by far the most religious developed country in the world, and we have the shortest lifespan, highest violent crime rates, worst health care (while spending far and away the most on it), and the biggest debt. We have 5% of the population and use 25% of the worlds energy resources. And we have 58 million people that voted for the dimbulb George W Bush. If that last item isn’t enough to convince you that religion is bad for society that you are beyond help anyway. As I have said before, defining standards of behavior (which is what morals are) is just common sense in order for groups of people to live together. Actually all species that live in social groups have standards of behavior. This is how they survive. Just look at packs of dogs, lions or chimps. They all have social rules, obviously not the same as human rules, but rules nonetheless.

American society has some great features, most notably our constitution and bill of rights. The ideas expressed in these documents are what make the US special. They were created by people that recognized that religion must be kept separate from the state in order to thrive. We must get back to the ideals of Jefferson and Adams. We must get away from religion.