So I’m reading/hearing about something flaring up in Texas again in regards to Creationism. I always get these strange “articles” in my RSS for the “evolution” query on Google Alerts where an uninformed columnist rambles on how the theory has been disproved or brought into doubt. These arguments are not my brief, I’ll leave that to Josh Rosenau et al. Nevertheless one of the interesting things about the discussion in regards to Creationists has been the reality that the United States is swarming with them, though there are Creationists elsewhere, especially in the Islamic world. It is a difference of degree, not kind.
Attitudes toward Creationism vary across European countries, and even within European countries. But what about the United States? It’s not a coincidence that the same states crop up when it comes to Creationism vs. Evolution flair ups.
The General Social Survey has several variables which ask about evolution. SCITESTY, SCITEST4, EVOLVED and CREATION. Additionally it has regional divisions which break down along Census parameters:
Here are the results from the questions above by region:
|Humans Evo. From Animals||Man has Evo.||Humans Developed From Earlier Species Of Animal||Human Developed From Animals|
|Def. True + Prob True||Yes||Def True + Prob True||True|
|E North Central||44||55.2||45.4||50.5|
|W North Central||48.2||60.9||49.6||55.5|
|E South Central||31.7||46.5||19.1||27.2|
|W South Central||41||43.9||34.5||38.9|
I assume no one is surprised, as I’ve reported similar results before. The United States is a big country with 300 million citizens and a lot of cultural diversity, even among those who are white (I want to make clear here that I’m not using diversity as a euphemism for colored people). Now I’ve taken two of the questions above which are similar to survey from a few years ago among European nations, with the different American regions included.
As you can see, Blue America overlaps to a great degree with Europe. American exceptionalism is then more a function of Red America.