Wednesday, September 28, 2005

EMOTIONAL INTELLIGENCE - UK Study: Societies Worse Off When They Have God on Their Side

“The study shows that England, despite the social ills it has, is actually performing a good deal better than the USA in most indicators, even though it is now a much less religious nation than America.”

A study released September 27, 2005 by The Times in the UK is making headlines.
Conclusion of the study: The US is not doing as well in reducing social ills as other countries such as the UK, France, Japan and Scandanavia. “The non-religious, proevolution democracies contradict the dictum that a society cannot enjoy good conditions unless most citizens ardently believe in a moral creator. The widely held fear that a Godless citizenry must experience societal disaster is therefore refuted.”

According to a recent study, religious belief can case damage to a society, contributing towards high murder rates, abortion, sexual promiscuity and suicide, according to research published today. In fact, they think belief in and worship of God may actually contribute to social problems.

The study compares the social peformance of Britain and other relatively secular countries with the US, where (according to the study) the majority believes in a creator rather than the theory of evolution. Many conservative evangelicals in the US consider Darwinism to be a social evil, believing that it inspires atheism and amorality.

Many liberal Christians and believers of other faiths believe their religion makes them "better" people, and has been described as “spiritual capital”. However, the study claims the opposite.

The paper, published in the Journal of Religion and Society, a US academic journal, reports: “Many Americans agree that their churchgoing nation is an exceptional, God-blessed, shining city on the hill that stands as an impressive example for an increasingly sceptical world.

“In general, higher rates of belief in and worship of a creator correlate with higher rates of homicide, juvenile and early adult mortality, STD infection rates, teen pregnancy and abortion in the prosperous democracies.

“The United States is almost always the most dysfunctional of the developing democracies, sometimes spectacularly so.”

Gregory Paul, the author of the study and a social scientist, used data from the International Social Survey Programme, Gallup and other research bodies to reach his conclusions, comparing murder rates, abortion, suicide and teen pregnancy and other social indicators.

The study concluded that:
  • the US was the world’s only prosperous democracy where murder rates were still high, and that the least devout nations were the least dysfunctional.
  • rates of gonorrhoea in adolescents in the US were up to 300 times higher than in less devout democratic countries.
  • US adolescent and adult syphilis infection rates, and adolescent abortion rates are "uniquely high"
  • “The study shows that England, despite the social ills it has, is actually performing a good deal better than the USA in most indicators, even though it is now a much less religious nation than America.” (quoting Mr. Paul)
  • the disparity was even greater between the US and other countries, including France, Japan and the Scandinavian countries. These nations had been the most successful in reducing murder rates, early mortality, sexually transmitted diseases and abortion, he added.
  • “I suspect that Europeans are increasingly repelled by the poor societal performance of the Christian states,” Mr. Paul added.

    Mr Paul delayed releasing the study until now because of Hurricane Katrina. He said that the evidence accumulated by a number of different studies suggested that religion might actually contribute to social ills.

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