AMERICAN SECULARISM CULTUR AL CONTOURS OF NONRELIGIOUS BELIEF SYSTEMS. Joseph O. Baker & Buster G. Smith

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1 AMERICAN SECULARISM CULTUR AL CONTOURS OF NONRELIGIOUS BELIEF SYSTEMS Joseph O. Baker & Buster G. Smith

2 American Secularism: Cultural Contours of Nonreligious Belief Systems Joseph O. Baker and Buster G. Smith Data Analyses Appendix Contents: Description of Content of the Tables 1 Question wordings for classifying secularity with different datasets 3 Distribution of secularities in 2007 in the U.S. using four national datasets 4 Religious and spiritual attributes of secular Americans 5 Life satisfaction, views of science, and social conflict among secular Americans 6 Ordinal logistic regressions of self-rated satisfaction and happiness 7 Ethnicity, social class, and immigrant status in relation to secularities 8 Binary logistic regressions of secularity and infrequently attending religious services 9 Socialization, familial attributes, and social network patterns of secular Americans 10 Sexual orientation and secularity 11 Martial and relationship statuses for secular Americans by gender 12 Childhood religious or secular socialization and adult secular or religious status 13 Political views of secular Americans 14

3 1 Description of Tables Table A.1 provides information on the specific questions that were used to classify secularity for each of the primary data sources analyzed, while Table A.2 shows descriptive information on the proportion of respondents classified as atheist, agnostic, nonaffiliated believer, culturally religious, and actively religious in the GSS, 2007 Pew Religious Landscape Survey, 2007 Baylor Religion Survey, and 2006 Faith Matters Survey. Tables A.3 and A.4 show analyses discussed in Chapter 5 on ideologies of secularities, with data taken from the waves of the GSS, the 2007 Pew RLS, and the 2007 BRS II. Column percentages are shown (e.g., the percentage of atheists who never attend religious services). Chi square tests were significant at the.01 level for the differences between the different secular categories for all questions shown on the tables. 1 Table A.5 shows the results of ordinal logistic regression models predicting self rated life satisfaction from the 2007 Pew RLS and happiness from the waves of the GSS, which are discussed in Chapter 5. Unstandardized coefficients are shown, which were used to solve the regression equations and derive the predicted probability of being in specific categories for the different categories of secularity. 2 The actively religious were used as the reference category in these models, meaning the coefficients shown for the secular categories represent the difference between the actively religious and the category in question. Table A.6 shows results discussed in Chapter 6. The left side of the table breaks down the percentage within the lowest and highest quartiles of social class (standardized measures of education and income levels) by ethnicity. For example, the percentages shown for low SES white Americans represent the frequency distribution of secularists and the actively religious with those characteristics; for instance, 2% of low SES whites are atheists, compared to 6% of high SES whites. The right side of the table shows the percentages for the frequency distributions of secularities within 1 st, 2 nd, and 3 rd or later generations of immigrants, again broken down by ethnicity. Data for the analyses were taken from the 2007 Pew RLS for white, African, and Asian Americans, and from the 2011 Pew Survey of Latinos for Latino Americans. Table A.7 shows the results of binary logistic regressions predicting claiming no religion (vs. being religiously affiliated), infrequently attending religious services (vs. more frequent attendance), and being an atheist, agnostic, or nonaffiliated believer (vs. claiming a religious identity). Results from these models are presented in Chapter 7. Each model includes the triple interaction term between gender, education level, and political identity, as well as the lower order terms necessary for properly testing for this relationship. 3 Unstandardized coefficients are presented, which were then used to determine the probability of being in each of the outcomes based on gender, education, and political identity. Data for claiming no religion and infrequently attending religious services were taken from the waves of the GSS, while the data on claiming a secular identity were taken from the 2007 Pew RLS. Table A.8 presents the frequency distributions for secularities among Americans who selfidentify as homosexual, bisexual, and heterosexual using data from the waves of the GSS. The differences in the distributions between the categories of sexual orientation were statistically nonsignificant (p =.745), indicating that there is greater similarity than difference for patterns of secularity based on sexual orientation. This information is also discussed in Chapter 7.

4 2 Table A.9 presents the percentages within each secular category and the actively religious regarding patterns of religious socialization, familial conflict, and social network composition. Chi square tests were significant at the.001 level for the differences between the different types of secularity for all questions shown on the table. Data on the socialization of children and the religious preference of one s spouse were taken from the 2007 Pew RLS. Data on parents religious affiliations, use of corporal punishment by parents, and selecting family as the most important social status were taken from the 2007 BRS II. Data on the religious composition of friendship networks were taken from the 2006 Faith Matters Survey. Table A.10 presents the frequency distributions of secularity within specific categories of marital or relationship status, with men and women analyzed separately. Table A11 presents patterns of adult secularity and active religiosity within specific categories of those raised atheist, agnostic, or nothing in particular. The data for Tables A.10 and A.11 were taken from the 2007 Pew RLS. Information in Tables A.9, A.10, and A.11 is discussed in Chapter 8. Table A.12 presents the percentages of those within each secular category and the actively religious who select specific options on survey questions about politics and government, which are discussed in Chapter 9. Data on Americans views of and satisfaction with government were taken from the 2007 Pew RLS, while views of specific policy issues involving of sexuality and gender, as well information on voting patterns, were taken from the waves of the GSS. Chi square tests for the differences between categories of secularity were significant at the.01 level for all questions about general views of governance or voting patterns. There were not statistically significant differences between secularists for some matters of gender and sexuality, such as view about the morality of premarital sex, allowing abortion in cases of rape, and gender roles for women. For these items, there was more of a general division between actively religious and secular Americans than between types of secularities. 1 To be clear, this means a chi square test between only the four primary categories of secularity and the full outcome variable in question. All analyses including the actively religious as a category were highly significant because of the substantial differences between actively religious and secular Americans on the outcomes of interest. 2 For primers on logistic regression and predicted probability, see J. Scott Long, Regression Models for Categorical and Limited Dependent Variables (Thousand Oaks: Sage Publications, 1997); Scott Menard, Logistic Regression: From Introductory to Advanced Concepts and Applications (Thousand Oaks: Sage Publications, 2010). 3 For primers on interaction effects in multivariate regression models, see Leona S. Aiken and Stephen G. West, Multiple Regression: Testing and Interpreting Interactions (Thousand Oaks: Sage, 1991); James Jaccard and Robert Turrisi, Interaction Effects in Multiple Regression, 2 nd edition (Thousand Oaks: Sage, 2003).

5 3 Table A.1: Question Wordings for Classifying Secularity with Primary Data Sources Secular Category 2010 GSS 2007 Pew RLS 2007 BRS 2006 Faith Matters Atheist Question Response Agnostic Question Response Nonaffiliated Believer Questions Which statement expresses your belief about God? I don t believe in God Which statement expresses your belief about God? I don t know whether there is a God What is your religious preference? + Which statement expresses your belief about God? Responses None + Belief in God Culturally Religious Questions How often do you attend religious services? + About how often do you pray? Responses Once a year (or less) + Less than once a week What is your present religion, if any? Which statement comes closest to your personal beliefs about God? How sure are you about belief in God? Atheist OR Nothing in particular + No belief in God I am an atheist Don t believe What is your present religion, if any? Agnostic What is your present religion, if any? + Do you believe in God or a universal spirit? Nothing in particular + Belief in God How often do you attend religious services? + Outside of religious services, how often do you pray? Seldom or never + Seldom or never Which statement comes closest to your personal beliefs about God? I don t know and there is no way to find out With what religion do you most closely identify? + Which statement comes closest to your personal beliefs about God? No religion + Belief in God How often do you attend religious services? + About how often do you pray or meditate outside of religious services? Once or twice a year (or less) + Only on certain occasions or never How sure are you about belief in God? Not at all sure + Not quite sure What is your religious preference? + How sure are you about belief in God? Nothing in particular + Belief in God How often do you attend religious services? + How important is religion in your daily life? Once or twice a year (or less) + Not at all important

6 4 Table A.2: Distribution of Secularities Using Four National Datasets Category GSS 2007 Pew RLS 2007 BRS 2006 Faith Matters Atheist Agnostic Nonaffiliated believer Culturally religious Actively religious

7 5 Table A.3: Religious and Spiritual Attributes of Secular Americans (Column %) Outcome Atheist Agnostic Nonaffiliated believer Culturally religious Actively religious Does not believe in god or universal spirit Never attend services Never pray Hardly any confidence in religion Religion causes conflict Find little truth in any religion Not a member of a congregation Religion not at all important Meditate at least once a month Feel spiritual peace at least once a month Feel deep sense of wonder once a month Religious supernatural beliefs (mean) Paranormal supernatural beliefs (mean) Sources: GSS for attendance, prayer, and confidence; average supernatural belief from 2007 BRS; all others from 2007 Pew RLS Note: Chi square tests are significant at the.001 level for differences between secular categories for all questions

8 6 Table A.4: Personal Satisfaction, Views of Science, and Perceptions of Social Conflict among Secular Americans (Column %) Outcome Atheist Agnostic Nonaffiliated believer Culturally religious Actively religious Satisfaction Very satisfied with personal life Very dissatisfied with personal life Very happy Very satisfied with family life Very satisfied with standard of living Feel life has purpose Science Science and Religion are incompatible Accept human evolution Support teaching creationism Science will solve human problems Science questions answered correctly (mean) Social Conflict Perceive conflict with being secular Perceive conflict with being religious Conflict with family about religion Feel views are ridiculed by the media Have kept religious beliefs from others Consider themselves critical Sources: Satisfaction and conflict perception from 2007 Pew RLS; Sense of purpose, science attitudes and familial conflict from 2007 BRS; Science knowledge from 2008 GSS; Happiness from GSS Note: Chi square tests are significant at the.01 level for differences between the secular categories for all questions.

9 Table A.5: Ordinal Logistic Regressions of Self Rated Satisfaction and Happiness (Unstandardized Coefficients) Variable Life Satisfaction Happiness Atheist a Agnostic a.124*.199 Nonaffiliated Believer a.145***.165 Culturally Religious a.210***.238* Age.002**.004* Female.105***.095 Black b.423***.189* Asian b.354*** Hispanic b.311*** Other Race b.183***.140 Politically liberal.100***.047* Education.054***.117*** Income.134***.005*** South Married.534***.872*** Children Clear standards of morality.134*** Model Stats Cut (constant) Cut (constant) Cut (constant) N log likelihood Nagelkerke R Sources: Satisfaction from 2007 Pew RLS; Happiness from GSS *** P.001 ** P.01 * P.05 (two tailed tests) a: Actively religious are reference category b: White is reference category 7

10 8 Table A.6: Ethnicity, Social Class, and Immigrant Status in Relation to Secularity (Column %) Social Class Immigrant Generation Low SES High SES 1 st generation 2 nd generation 3 rd + generations Whites Atheist Agnostic Nonaffiliated believer Culturally religious Actively religious African Americans Atheist Agnostic Nonaffiliated believer Culturally religious Actively religious Asian Americans Atheist Agnostic Nonaffiliated believer Culturally religious Actively religious Latino/a Americans Atheist Agnostic Nonaffiliated believer Culturally religious Actively religious Sources: 2007 Pew RLS for white, black, and Asian; 2011 Pew National Survey of Latino/as

11 9 Table A.7: Binary Logistic Regression Models Predicting Secularity and Infrequent Religious Service Attendance by Gender, Education Level, and Political Identity (Unstandardized Coefficients) Variables No Religion Non Attendance Secular Identity Female.888***.366**.235 Degree.248*** *** Politically liberal.265***.140***.149*** Year.037***.016*** Age.018***.005***.019*** Black a.574***.853***.404*** Asian a.026 Other race a.280***.474***.029 Hispanic a.619*** Divorced b.439***.512***.194*** Separated b.586***.302***.117 Never married b.181***.134***.267*** Widowed b Cohabitating b.528*** Children.147***.099***.002 Midwest c.336***.143***.153*** Northeast c.474***.342***.124*** West c.902***.651***.506*** Family income Hours worked Mother s degree *** Father s degree.054**.013 Interactions Gender X degree.267**.128*.218*** Gender X political ID *** Degree X political ID.049**.042***.075*** Gender X degree X political ID.087***.040*.066*** Model stats N Constant log likelihood Nagelkerke R Data sources: No Religion and Non Attendance GSS; Secular Identity 2007 Pew RLS *** P.001 ** P.01 * P.05 (two tailed tests) a: Reference category is white b: Reference category is currently married c: Reference category is South

12 Table A.8: Sexual Orientation and Secularity (Column %) Secular/Religious Category Homosexual Bisexual Heterosexual Atheist Agnostic Nonaffiliated Believer Culturally Religious Actively Religious Source: GSS Note: Chi square = 5.12; df= 8; p =.74 10

13 11 Table A.9: Religious Socialization, Familial Attributes, and Social Network Patterns of Secular Americans (Column %) Outcome Atheist Agnostic Nonaffiliated believer Culturally religious Actively religious Prays with Children Send children to religious programs Father had no religion Mother had no religion Attended weekly at age Parents used corporal punishment Have at least one close friend who is not religious Have conflict with family over religion Family is most important to identity Have no close friends Spouse s Religion or Secularity Atheist spouse Agnostic spouse None spouse Catholic spouse Protestant spouse Other religious spouse Sources: Socialization of children and spouse s religion from 2007 Pew RLS; Parents religions, use of corporal punishment, status salience from 2007 BRS; Attendance as child from 2008 GSS; Friendship questions from 2006 Faith Matters Note: Chi square tests were significant at the.001 level for the differences between secular categories on all questions.

14 12 Table A.10: Marital and Relationship Statuses for Secular Americans by Gender (Column %) Men Women Rel./Secular Never Married Divorced/ Cohabitating Widowed Never Married Divorced/ Cohabi Widowed Identity Married Separated Married Separated tating Atheist Agnostic Nonaffiliated Cul. Religious Actively Religious Source: 2007 Pew RLS

15 13 Table A.11: Childhood Socialization and Adult Secular or Actively Religious Identity (Column %) Adult Secularity/ Religiosity Raised Atheist Raised Agnostic Raised Nothing Raised Catholic Raised Protestant Raised Mormon Raised Jewish Atheist Agnostic Nonaffiliated Believer Culturally Religious Actively Religious Source: 2007 Pew RLS

16 14 Table A.12: Political Views of Secular Americans (Column %) Outcome Atheist Agnostic Nonaffiliated believer Culturally religious Actively religious General Views of Government Very dissatisfied with things in the U.S Very dissatisfied with U.S. political system Want smaller gov. with less services Gov. should do more to help the needy Want stricter environmental policies Favor diplomacy over military strength Favor interventionist foreign policy Very interested in international politics Follow public affairs most of the time Gov. too involved in issues of morality Voted for Kerry in 2004 election Voted in 2008 election Views of Sexuality and Gender Same sex relations not at all wrong Same sex marriage should be allowed Abortion should be legal in all cases Abortion should be legal in cases of rape Birth control should be available to teens Premarital sex not wrong at all Porn should be illegal Women not suited for politics Men should work, women stay home Preschool kids hurt by mother working Sources: Satisfaction and views of government from 2007 Pew RLS; Voting patterns, sexual policy and gender role questions from GSS Note: Chi square tests are significant at the.01 level for differences between secular categories on all questions, except for views of premarital sex, abortion in cases of rape, questions about gender roles.

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