It's often about actually fomenting social problems, and the breakdown of families, rather than the encouragement of virtue. Why? In a word, fundamentalism:
Strayhorn compiled data from various data sets. The religiosity information came from a sample of nearly 36,000 participants who were part of the U.S. Religious Landscapes Survey by the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life conducted in 2007, while the teen birth and abortion statistics came from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
For religiosity, the researchers averaged the percentage of respondents who agreed with conservative responses to eight statements, including: ''There is only one way to interpret the teachings of my religion," and ''Scripture should be taken literally, word for word."
They found a strong correlation between statewide conservative religiousness and statewide teen birth rate even when they accounted for income and abortion rates.
One should remember that the very people who attack gay people for forming relationships and building families are the ones most responsible for teen births. Sarah Palin's pattern is not anomalous.
We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to the editor or write to firstname.lastname@example.org.