Traditional American Values

When I was recently a candidate to take many different and interesting people are exposed.

I did it a point to communicate with people about who I am, what I believe in, believe it or not, the negative responses I did not think that I had when I deferred law 17 was to be honest, but my lack of religious faith.

Actually, I was a little on the number of "shocked" looks like I have if I am the people I'm an atheist says. Although people seemed to get over itrather quickly after my state of discussion about religion and religious tolerance. But it was that the first "look" that really surprised me.

Now I have a good idea why.

A new study has been published:
Atheists identified as America's most distrusted minority, according to the new U of M study
What: U of M study shows America's distrust of atheism
Who: Penny Edgell, associate professor of sociology
Contact: Nina Shepherd, sociology, media relations,(612) 599-1148
Mark Cassutt University News Service, (612) 624-8038

Minneapolis / St Paul (3/20/2006) —
American's increasing acceptance of religious diversity extends not to those who do not believe in a God, according to a national survey by researchers at the University of Minnesota Department of Sociology.

From a telephone sampling of more than 2,000 households, university researchers found that Americans voteAtheists are among Muslims, recent immigrants, gays and lesbians and other minority groups in "sharing their vision of American society." Atheists and the minority that most Americans are least willing to marry their children.

Even though atheists are few, not formally organized and relatively hard to identify publicly, they are seen as a threat to the American way of life by a large segment of the American public. "Atheists, the billabout 3 percent of the U.S. population, offer a glaring exception to the rule of increasing social tolerance over the past 30 years, "says Penny Edgell, associate professor of sociology and director of the study researchers.

Edgell also argues that today's atheist the role that Catholics, Jews and communists in the past, they offer a symbolic moral boundary to membership in American society have played to play. "It seems that most Americans believe that diversity is fine as long aseach share a common 'core' of values that is credible and in America that "core" was religious in the past, "says Edgell. Many of the respondents of the study atheism associated with a series of moral indiscretions rampant between criminal behavior materialism and cultural elitism.

Edgell believes a fear of moral decline and resulting social unrest behind the results. "The Americans believe that they are more than rules and procedures with itsFellow citizens, they have a common understanding of right and wrong, "she said." Our results seem at a glance rest of atheists as self-interested individuals, does not concern the common good. "

The researchers also found acceptance or rejection of atheists related to and not only to personal religiosity, but is also exposed to one, the diversity, education and political orientation of higher education, East and West Coast Americans more accepting as the atheistsMidwestern colleagues.

The study is authored by Assistant Professor Joseph Gerteis and associate professor Doug Hartmann. It is the first in a series of national studies by the American Mosaic Project, a three-year project funded by the Minneapolis-based David Edelstein Family Foundation, based on race, religion and cultural diversity in today's looks like the United States. The study appears in the April issue of American SociologicalReview.

I thought it was important to understand a concern, other cultures and beliefs. I'm engrossed in learning about the different religions and religious history because we have a wide variety of religious and cultural differences in this country.

I guess religion has especially the freedom of religion of this country. Other parts of the world, including Afghanistan, have strict Islamic law, where a man in court for converting to Christianity and was facing the deathPunishment. A person like me would be executed for my lack of faith.

I bring this issue because I believe that people are basically good and tolerant. Consciousness is a key to understanding and that through raising awareness, I think some of these prejudices can be overcome.

Finally, we are not so different.

As atheists, we believe in things like:

Peace, joy, community, truth, goodness, beauty and freedom, these are attributes of human consciousness.We need to fight and protect them.

Marriage, family and commitment.

Religious freedom and liberty.

The separation of church and state.

Justice and forgiveness.

Fairness and competition.

Hard work and fair reward.

Helping others, by providing a hand up, not a hand out.

Education and lifelong learning.

The science and the scientific method.

We believe in the government for the people by the people.

Mankind mustProtection of the elderly, children and foundlings, or they will not be protected.

One must hear and help people.

We are responsible and must provide for the consequences of our actions.

Life is a struggle against avoidable and unavoidable situations.

Cooperation of humanity is the only hope of the world.

We must work to achieve our personal goals, now or never.

Again, we are so different?

This will hopefully help to raise awareness and helpto bring more understanding. By dialogue we can continue to have, and the mutual respect and tolerance that all people deserve to be increasing.

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