New Pew Poll: 60 Percent of Americans Believe in Biological Evolution

Jesus on a dinosaurA report from Pew Research’s Religion and Public
Life Project, “Public’s
Views on Human Evolution,
” finds that 60 percent of adult
Americans believe that humans and other living things evolved over
time while 33 percent say that they existed in their present forms
since the beginning of time. Essentially there is no overall change
since the last Pew poll on this topic back in 2009. One change,
however, fewer Republicans now believe in evolution. From Pew:

There are sizable differences among partisan groups in beliefs
about evolution. Republicans are less inclined than either
Democrats or political independents to say that humans have evolved
over time. Roughly two-thirds of Democrats (67%) and independents
(65%) say that humans have evolved over time, compared with less
than half of Republicans (43%).

The size of the gap between partisan groups has grown since
2009. Republicans are less inclined today than they were in 2009 to
say that humans have evolved over time (43% today vs. 54% in 2009),
while opinion among both Democrats and independents has remained
about the same.

For more background see my article, “Are
Republicans or Democrats More Anti-Science?

The religious views of Americans have an impact on how they view
evolution. From Pew:

A majority of white evangelical Protestants (64%) and half of
black Protestants (50%) say that humans have existed in their
present form since the beginning of time. But in other large
religious groups, a minority holds this view. In fact, nearly
eight-in-ten white mainline Protestants (78%) say that humans and
other living things have evolved over time. Three-quarters of the
religiously unaffiliated (76%) and 68% of white non-Hispanic
Catholics say the same. About half of Hispanic Catholics (53%)
believe that humans have evolved over time, while 31% reject that

While a majority of Americans think that biological evolution
has taken place, a substantial proportion believe that the process
has been guided by the Deity. From Pew:

Those saying that human evolution has evolved over time also
were asked for their views on the processes responsible for
evolution. Roughly a quarter of adults (24%) say that “a supreme
being guided the evolution of living things for the purpose of
creating humans and other life in the form it exists today,” while
about a third (32%) say that evolution is “due to natural processes
such as natural selection.”

For some background, see my reporting from the 2005
Creation Mega-Conference
at Liberty University.

from Hit & Run

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