Education and Beliefs About Evolution, to be perfectly clear

Proportion believing humans evolved from other species by education

Wackjob survey industry whores are constantly trotting out ridiculous numbers, usually because someone paid them to show that “most people believe X.” And, even when  they have no concrete interest. it is always good to muck things up by acting like some anomalous estimate from a non-representative survey is indicative of some kind of “trend” in public opinion. That’s their bread and butter. If it isn’t new, it isn’t a finding. It doesn’t matter if it’s accurate, much less relevant. Lately some of the survey whores have been claiming that even educated Americans are stupid enough to believe in creationism. And, the drunken British press has chimed in. But, the estimates they present are absolute farce.

Above you can see the true distribution of a the estimated proportion of respondents who believe that humans evolved from other life forms by educational attainment and year of the General Social Survey. You can see that the pattern is mostly consistent over years, except that people who have not graduated from high school are increasingly in line with the scientific consensus rather than religious nonsense. Further, people with college degrees are more likely to believe that humans evolved from other life forms, and people with graduate degrees are substantially more supportive than are those with BA/BS degrees. That education produces support for scientific explanations should not be surprising, but what seems lost on most people talking about this issue is that more than half of respondents from all levels of educational attainment now agree that the creationist myths of the Abrahamic tradition are bullshit, and about three fourths of the most educated reject the creation myths of the Abrahamic tradition.  Yet, many more states are wasting time passing laws to force schools to teach Christian creation myths in public schools.

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One Response to “Education and Beliefs About Evolution, to be perfectly clear”

  1. James Sweet Says:

    Yeah, I was baffled when the article asserted “only one in four American voters who have been awarded Masters degrees accepts the Darwinian line on evolution.” The other statistics asserted in that (atrocious) article could at least be twisted around to maybe kinda sorta reflect reality, but where the hell are they getting THAT?

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