The most distrusted minority in America

And I’m a proud member!

American’s increasing acceptance of religious diversity doesn’t extend to those who don’t believe in a god, according to a national survey by researchers in the University of Minnesota’s department of sociology.

From a telephone sampling of more than 2,000 households, university researchers found that Americans rate atheists below Muslims, recent immigrants, gays and lesbians and other minority groups in “sharing their vision of American society.” Atheists are also the minority group most Americans are least willing to allow their children to marry.

Even though atheists are few in number, not formally organized and relatively hard to publicly identify, they are seen as a threat to the American way of life by a large portion of the American public. “Atheists, who account for about 3 percent of the U.S. population, offer a glaring exception to the rule of increasing social tolerance over the last 30 years,” says Penny Edgell, associate sociology professor and the study’s lead researcher.

Sometimes I’m just amazed by the stupidity of my countrymen. I shouldn’t be, but I am.

But hey, maybe I’m just not looking on the bright side of this. I mean, before this, what could atheists lay claim to? We’re not the most evil group in the country. Nor the most irrational. We’re not the most violent, the most exclusionary, the most oppressive, or the most closed minded. It’s nice to lead the pack in something; and if being the most distrusted is all we can get, I say we should wear that badge with pride!

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