Among the many surprises I had while conducting the Non-Believing Clergy study, was that it was routine for people who entered the clergy in the south not to have received legitimate science education in public school. Call me naïve, but I thought that textbooks had to teach facts. It was shocking to hear these clearly intelligent people acknowledging the gaps in their science education regarding evolution.
Something else that I found shocking was listening to religious programming on the radio as I drove through the south on my way to interviews. Some of it I really liked – the lovely Gospel melodies that were so soothing, memorable and easy harmonize with. But the stories on the radio were horrendous.
It’s not called the Bible Belt for nothing, and it’s not a coincidence that every social and family pathology ever named is most acute across the South.