Mark A. Smith is professor of Political Science and an adjunct professor of Comparative Religion and Communication at the University of Washington. His research focuses on economic and religious groups, ideas, and influences in American politics. In his new book, Secular Faith: How Culture Has Trumped Religion in American Politics, Dr. Smith argues that religion is not nearly the unchanging conservative influence in American politics that we have come to think it is and is best understood as responding to changing political and cultural values rather than shaping them.
Welcome to the Morning Buzz, PRRI’s morning dose of religion-related news with a shot of data – because what doesn’t liven up a morning round-up like some public opinion numbers?
A new report shows that UFO sightings in Canada doubled over the past year. Should the U.S. be worried that its northern neighbor is pulling ahead in extraterrestrial tourism?
Your economist friend is probably not your best source of advice when it comes to the stock market.
In the Congressional debate over immigration reform legislation, the Senate’s “Gang of 8″ has stymied Republican attempts to bolster enforcement provisions. For more on Americans’ perspectives on crucial elements of immigration reform, check out our recent survey. (Meanwhile, here is an exhaustive guide to the Senate’s amendments to the immigration bill.)
At USA Today, Jonathan Rauch makes what he calls the “conservative case for gay marriage.” Last week, Dr. Robert P. Jones and Daniel Cox showed that over the past decade, conservatives have grown increasingly supportive of civil unions, the middle ground between no legal recognition for gay couples and same-sex marriage that was once popular among moderates.
This terrifying piece shows that for some, dropping acid can be a lifelong experience.