Citations for studies cited in FFRF’s spring/summer 2023 membership appeal letter: “Democracy needs you and so does FFRF”

Studies and links are given in order of reference in FFRF’s Spring / Summer 2023 Appeal.

The “Nones” are rising. The “Nones” (religiously unaffiliated) continue to outrank any other single “denomination” (at between 27-29 percent of the adult population). Pew (Dec. 14, 2021) finds 3-in-10 (29 percent) of U.S. adults are nonreligious. PRRI 2022 Census of American Religion (Feb. 24, 2023) finds 27 percent.

There are more atheists, agnostics or “nothing in particulars” than Roman Catholics or Southern Baptists or any other sect. PRRI 2020 Census of American Religion (July 8, 2021)

At least 34 percent of Generation Z (those born after 1995) profess no religion The Survey Center on American Life (March 24, 2022). Analyzing the Cooperative Election Study raw data from October and November 2022, researcher Ryan P. Burge finds that Nones overall are 36 percent of the population, and that a whopping 48.5 percent of the youngest adult generation are Nones.

About 22 percent of voters in the 2022 midterms were “Nones.” Unaffiliated voters supported abortion rights “by staggering percentages” and made the difference in key races, according to Associated Press’ definitive APVoteCast survey of 94,000 voters nationwide.

But Christian nationalists are ruling. White evangelicals (most of whom accept Christian nationalist precepts) are at most 15 percent of the population.

More data documenting the face-off between U.S. seculars and Christian nationalists. The Nones at 92 percent are the largest group to emphatically reject “Christian nation” lies. Nearly two-thirds of white evangelical Protestants embrace some forms of Christian nationalism. See PRRI study on Christian nationalism.

The Nones are the largest group in support of marriage equality. A majority of White Christian evangelicals oppose same-sex marriage rights. See: PRRI: Survey on LGBTQ rights, March 23, 2023. (While Jewish Americans are tied with Nones in support of marriage equality, which is nice, there are far more Nones at one-third of adults than UU members, who are 2.4 percent of all U.S. adults. By the way, this survey shows that the religiously unaffiliated at 97 percent are by far the most supportive of broad LGBTQ nondiscrimination protections. Interestingly, however, a majority of religious individuals, even Mormons and white evangelical Protestants, showed broad support. But the “Nones” lead the pack.)

The Nones (at 85 percent) are the largest group by religious identification in support of abortion rights. Fully 71 percent of white Christian evangelicals believe abortion should be illegal in most or all cases. See PRRI’s “Abortion Attitudes in a Post-Roe World,” Feb. 23, 2023. (Note that while Unitarian Universalist, a creedless sect, support to keep abortion legal in all or most cases and are tied with the Nones at 85 percent, there are far more Nones at one-third of adults than UU members. The U.S. Religious Landscape Survey identified the portion of UU members at .3 percent of the adult population.)

Atheists and agnostics, who comprise about a third of the religiously unaffiliated, are even more committed overall than the Nones. See YouGov America survey. Among FFRF’ers, 98.8 percent support abortion rights and 98.9 percent support marriage equality, according to our major 2020 survey.

To quote academic researcher Ryan Burge, we punch way above our weight.

Freedom From Religion Foundation