Gallup released poll results today that suggest more than half of all Americans (53 percent) reject evolution and scientific evidence. They agree with the statement, "God created man exactly how Bible describes it."
Another 31% allow for evolution, but claim it was "God guided." Only 12% back evolution and agree "God had no part."
Gallup summarized it this way: "Surveys repeatedly show that a substantial portion of Americans do not believe that the theory of evolution best explains where life came from." They are "not so quick to agree with the preponderance of scientific evidence."
Gallup found that 57 percent of Republicans support the statement, "God created human beings in present form," while only 44 percent of Democrats support the statement.
Support for this Bible view rises steadily with age: from 43% for those 18 to 29, to 59% for those 65 and older. It declines steadily with education, dropping from 58% for those with high school degrees to a still-substantial 25% with postgraduate degrees.Gallup has been asking this in various ways since 1982, and has found support for the statement that "God created man in present form" to be 45 percent or higher each year.
Newport wraps it up: "Several characteristics correlate with belief in the biblical explanation for the origin of humans. Those with lower levels of education, those who attend church regularly, those who are 65 and older, and those who identify with the Republican Party are more likely to believe that God created humans 'as is,' than are those who do not share these characteristics."
This makes me question the notion of whether or not that whole "cultural creatives" thing is really happening. It also lends support for my Who Owns God? series of articles (parts one, two, and three).
At least 53 percent of the population in this country still holds a pre-rational understanding of the world based in the Hebrew creation myth. Wilber/Beck (2000) had suggested that 40 percent of the population was still in the Blue meme of the Spiral. They had projected another 20 percent at Red and 10 percent at Purple, which would more than account for the numbers shown in the poll.
The problem is that they projected another 30 percent at Orange and 10 percent at Green. That leaves us with about 112 percent when you add in the 2 percent they projected at second tier. I'm guessing they were a bit optimistic with the Orange and Green numbers (I'm sure that Wilber has addressed this discrepancy somewhere.)
It's curious to look at the 53 percent number from the poll and realize that George Bush was able to garner 52 percent of the vote (if you overlook all the irregularities in the last election). What does that tell us about the voters in this country?
For those of us hoping to see a more evolved culture in this country, I am afraid it is much further off than we have thought. More than half of the people walking around on the street still believe the world was created in 7 days, approximately 6,500 years ago.
Be afraid. Be very afraid. These people vote.