Friday, February 13, 2009

40% believe in evolution, but only 25% do not!

Gallup released a poll, that coincides with Darwin's birthday, which examines American's belief in biological evolution. It is a great poll, breaking down belief patterns across education attainment, age , religiousness, etc.

However, several reports and blogs about this poll disparage Americans for their lack of scientific sophistication, but I think that the results are far more positive then I would have guessed. Only 25% outright deny evolution! I would have thought a clear majority would take this stance as was shown in 2005. A further 36% do not have an opinion, and as scientists and educators, these folks are the reason why we educate and hold events like Darwin Day. Thank you to all those who work so tirelessly promoting science education and literacy, like those at NCSE.

2 comments:

Lyndell said...

Does the poll use the term "believe" in evolution? Because right away I see a problem. We believe in things we cannot see or prove. We accept theories of scientific concepts. It's really common to see "believe in evolution" but I think that just sets up evolution to be the polar opposite of religion. You know, either you believe in evolution or you believe in God.

Marc Cadotte said...

I disagree, I think believe is an appropriate word, and believing things we can't see is faith. Beliefs are the foundation of how we view the world and so question is not whether we believe, but the methodology by which we form beliefs (i.e., epistemology).