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?
Heard of Wandai Wrection? This Japanese Little Leaguer loves them (according to ESPN)…
CNN’s Saundra Young tells the compelling story of a couple who used medicinal marijuana to stop their 6-year-old daughter’s seizures. PRRI data shows eight-in-ten (80 percent) Americans favor the legalization of medical marijuana, while 19 percent oppose such legalization.
If you’re feeling exhausted and have a sudden hankering for a hamburger and a milkshake, check out this new study. It explores why our brains want fatty and sweet foods when we’re sleep-deprived, and why we don’t when we’re well-rested.
Remember hungering for the sweet, sweet taste of freedom that came with your shiny new driver’s license? A new study finds young adults today are less likely than they were 20 years ago to get driver’s licenses, with most citing the the process as too much of a hassle. Kudos, DMV!
And earlier this week, a herd of “eco-goats” roamed Washington’s Congressional Cemetery to eat up the vines, bushes and other harmful plants that could hurt the trees–an all-natural solution to pesticide-free pruning.