Pay Attention to Religion in America: Even If You Don’t Drive You Can Get Hit By a Car

by Bob Schwartz

Pew Research Center

The final report of the Pew Research Center 2014 Religious Landscape Study has just been released: “This report focuses on Americans’ religious beliefs and practices and assesses how they have changed in recent years.” (For those who don’t like to read, here’s a topline video.)

No matter your own religious inclinations, investigate. This is the best overview of religion in America, a survey of more than 35,000 U.S. adults.

Why should you care?

Let’s say you don’t have much to do with cars. You don’t own one. Maybe you even live in a city where you don’t need one, and in fact it is trouble to have one. You think that cars are a problem, not a solution. Anything having to do with cars is totally outside your area of interest.

Except that everywhere you go, the phenomena of cars surround you as part of your world. Streets, traffic, traffic lights, energy, etc. You can’t escape it. Why? Because hundreds of millions of Americans own and use hundreds of millions of cars that occupy a huge piece of our economic, social, psychic, cultural, legal space.

You don’t have to believe in cars, but you should not ignore or dismiss them or the people who own and use them. You don’t have to be an expert on cars, but it might be helpful to have some basic understanding and interest.

Because whether or not you believe in cars, if the traffic light is broken when you cross the street, you will believe in the car that hits you.