Poll Reveals 45% of Americans Think the US Should be a Christian Nation

A Pew Research poll published on October 27 revealed that nearly half of Americans believe the US should be a “Christian nation.” However, 45% of Americans do not agree on a definition of what that label means.

The study found that 60% of Americans believe that the founders intended a Christian nation, and 33% of Americans believe that it is a Christian nation right now.

Ideas about what the label means are fleshed out by the fact that out of the respondents who want or already believe we have a Christian nation, more than half say the federal government should not declare it so nor advocate for Christian values. Further, slightly more respondents think the separation of church and state should be enforced (39%) than those who do not (31%).

In fact, many practicing American Christians think Christian Nationalists are downright dangerous. Christians Against Christian Nationalism launched in July 2019. Their mission statement reads, in part, “Christian Nationalism demands Christianity be privileged by the state and implies that to be a good American, one must be Christian. It often overlaps with and provides cover for white supremacy and racial subjugation. We reject this damaging political ideology.”

The Pew poll further supports this position in respondents' overwhelming agreement that the Supreme Court should not decide cases based on the judges’ religious views (83%) and that churches should not endorse political candidates (77%).

Christian Nationalists, though a minority, hold extreme views, such as imposing Biblical mandates over the will of the people and a total abortion ban no matter the circumstances. Several Republicans running in the 2022 midterm elections have embraced and propagated the label. The public policies they support include ultra-restricted voting and the freedom to discriminate against anyone who hurts their religious sentiments, such as LGBTQ people, women, and those of a different religion. Christian Nationalists advocate for church teachings over science and want evolution out of the public classroom and replaced with Biblical creationism. The anti-science rhetoric has led many to anti-vaccine stances while propagating other dangerous conspiracy theories, including the 2020 election’s “Big Lie,” which misled some Americans about a stolen election that led to the January 6 insurrection at the US Capital.

For all the reporting on Christian Nationalism in mainstream media over the past few years, one of the most surprising reveals of the Pew poll is that 54% of US adults have never heard of it.

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