I think the words above from Marian Lee, who self-identifies as a Progressive Christian, deserve to stand on their own, so I won’t add too much here.
I can still remember the whinging that seemed to be a constant thing in our weekly Bible classes. The “Poor Me” syndrome was annoying even then, but it is especially loud today from White Evangelicals. If only they would start taking the lessons Jesus tried to teach them seriously, they would get some respect.
Let’s close out this post with some facts from my friends at RedLetterChristians:
- White evangelical Protestants now make up 14% of the population, down from 23% in 2006. On the other hand, white mainline Protestants have now surpassed white evangelicals, with 16% of the population (up from 13% in 2016).
- With an average age of 56, white evangelical Protestants are the oldest religious group in America. (White Catholics are next, at 54.) More than this, white evangelicals constitute only 7% of Americans between the ages of 18 and 29. while 12% of this age group are white mainline Protestants and 8% are white Catholics. Most striking. 36% of Americans in this age group identify as “nones,” i.e., religiously unaffiliated.
- Overall, the percentage of Americans who are “nones” has dropped from 26% in 2018 to 23% in 2020. Regarding one of the above headlines, I don’t think this qualifies as a “shrinking,” given that the religiously unaffiliated is easily the largest “religious” group in the United States (white mainline Protestants are second), and given the dramatic rise of the “nones” over the past three decades.
- 51% of white evangelicals identify as Republican, while only 22% identify as Democrat. On the other hand, white mainline Protestants and white Catholics lean toward the Democratic party as opposed to the Republican party (35% v. 33% and 38% v. 32%, respectively). Christians of color are overwhelmingly Democratic, as are the “nones.”
We shouldn’t let the tail wag the dog as far as those claiming the Christian label…