A 2005 survey by the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life found that nearly two-thirds of Americans endorse the simultaneous teaching of creationism and evolution in public schools. How can citizens know what creationism means, or make an informed decision about whether it belongs in classrooms, if fewer than half can identify Genesis? No doubt the same proportion of Americans think that Thomas Edison said, "Let there be light."
Approximately 75 percent of adults, according to polls cited by Prothero, mistakenly believe the Bible teaches that "God helps those who help themselves." More than 10 percent think that Noah's wife was Joan of Arc. Only half can name even one of the four Gospels, and -- a finding that will surprise many -- evangelical Christians are only slightly more knowledgeable than their non-evangelical counterparts.
It is less surprising but more dangerous, given America's role in the world, that the public knows even less about Islam, Buddhism, Confucianism and Hinduism than it does about Christianity and Judaism. As Prothero notes, President Bush repeatedly declared that "Islam is peace" in the months after 9/11, while the prophet Muhammad was called a "terrorist" by the Rev. Jerry Falwell. "Who was right?" Prothero asks. "Unfortunately, Americans had no way to judge."
Interesting and depressing statistics.
One has to wonder, why follow something you know nothing about?
The condition Prothero describes in Religious Literacy is unquestionably one manifestation of a more general decline in the public's cultural and civic knowledge. According to polls conducted by the National Constitution Center, only one third of Americans can name even one of the rights guaranteed by the First Amendment. Is it any more startling that only one third can identify the preacher of the Sermon on the Mount?
Millions follow a country they know nothing about, millions do nothing but live a machine life - living to survive, instead of living to live.
It's sad, to know so many are so ignorant, and even worse, that they don't care. All that matters is a pack of Bud in the fridge, the game on tv, enough entertainment and sex to keep them distracted enough while they slowly drift everyday into the yawning abyss of nothingness.
How can we jolt America to life?
It's no guess that thousands of those called "christian", walk around and hate-monger any and everything, while attending a church on Easter and Christmas, half asleep, waiting to get home to dive into candy and presents.
66% of American's don't know a single right guaranteed by the First Amendment? And yet, I bet most would know every character on Lost or Grey's Anatomy, or the latest gossip from hollywood.
What has gotten this country so ignorant and blind?
well...I have an idea... and it's been a battle for ages...