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Posted by: Brother Of Jerry ( )
Date: April 17, 2023 11:24PM

https://religionnews.com/2023/04/12/we-know-americans-have-become-less-religious-surprising-new-data-shows-us-where/

I found the data fascinating, but then, graphical representation of data is one of my favorite things. I spent a fair amount of my working years in the northern Plains, so I looked at that area pretty closely. And of course Utah and Idaho had some interesting revelations (revealing data is about the only kind of revelation they have anymore, eh?)

I note that the entire column from Amarillo TX north to eastern ND is pretty highly affiliated with churches. Western ND (the oil patch) not so much, but still more than much of the country. Southern MN was very high too (no surprise to me), but northern MN not so much (that was a surprise). I guess the iron miners who lost their jobs were annoyed with God.

Montana had relatively low rates of religious affiliation except for a few counties, Most, especially 1 large county in the NW, the other in the SE are thinly populated, and are Reservations. One high affiliation county looks like it is near, but not including Billings. I have no idea what the situation is there.

The Bible Belt is a little farther west than I realized. I would have centered it in western South Carolina. Looks like the core is Tennessee down into TX.

Counties that gained adherents - the counties in ID and the one county in Utah that had a jump in adherents are the counties with hardly any people in them, so it would take very little to increase the percentage of adherents.

The upper Midwest had a major drop in church affiliation too. Not much of a surprise there for me.

Utah seems to have lost a lot of adherents in the central counties south of Utah County. Not that there is much population there, but I would expect those counties to be very conservative, so I am somewhat surprised. Looks like Pocatello and Twin Falls ID both lost significant membership. That’s a surprise. Maybe Idaho Falls too. Rexburg picked up membership. Blech.

And Jackson, WY picked up church affiliates. Who’d have thunk?! Must be Rubicon's influence. :) So did the Bighorn Basin (Powell, Lovell), but that is not a surprise.

The Blackfeet Reservation in NW MT started high, and went higher. Hmmm. Ditto the Crow Reservation east of Billings. And the Turtle Mountains Reservation in NCentral ND

Eastern MT and western ND took a big hit in losing adherents. I think the oil patch had a great deal to do with that, importing lots of single men who had a lot of money in their pockets, and working shifts that included weekends - not esactly a church-going crowd.

Iowa looks like they fell off a cliff, losing adherents. Unlike western ND and eastern MT, there are people in Iowa, so that is a significant shift.

The Bible Belt looks like it held its ground pretty well. That's unfortunate. If anybody was going to hold their ground, I’d prefer the Minnesota Lutherans. They are not crazy. A little peculiar perhaps, but not crazy.

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Posted by: summer ( )
Date: April 17, 2023 11:55PM

It looks like Utah is losing its religion rapidly except for one small oasis in the southern part of the state.

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Posted by: Beth ( )
Date: April 17, 2023 11:56PM

Thanks for the link.

I wish for the old days where scatter plot dots were the same size. These bigger/smaller bubbles makes we want to dig out a ruler.

Why the bubbles? Why?!? <— serious question

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Posted by: dagny ( )
Date: April 18, 2023 12:12AM

Jinx! I just complained about the same thing before I saw your comment.

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Posted by: Beth ( )
Date: April 18, 2023 12:17AM

Phew! I’m in good company!

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Posted by: dagny ( )
Date: April 18, 2023 12:12AM

I don't completely understand the scatter chart at the bottom. He says, "I created a scatter plot of the relationship between the vote share in the 2020 presidential election and the growth or decline in religion between 2010 and 2020."

I think(?) each dot is a county? Wouldn't the populations of various counties vary significantly? Urban blue dots might represent 100 times the population of a rural red dot. It seems difficult to assess the "bigger" scatter circles above and below his 0% line. I'm not sure if that is significant in any way, but something doesn't smell right about his claim that the relationship between red and blue areas and religion is essentially non-existent.

Also, he said the source is the Association of Statisticians of American Religious Bodies. "This group has just released preliminary data from its collection efforts in 2020." Wouldn't that have been impacted by the pandemic?

I think other important variables he does not address are education and access to information about religions. Also, over the last generation, employment has greatly impacted our ability to live where we want. Corporations often move their employees all over the place.

Interesting. Thanks.

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Posted by: Beth ( )
Date: April 18, 2023 12:22AM

Bubbles are supposed to be good illustrations of the relationship of three variables, but you need a damn legend!

https://chartio.com/learn/charts/bubble-chart-complete-guide/



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 04/18/2023 12:23AM by Beth.

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Posted by: dagny ( )
Date: April 18, 2023 12:26AM

Right.
I looked but didn't see a legend. Maybe the size of the county isn't important, but if not, why the bigger bubbles? He called it a scatter chart which made me think the bubble size wasn't the focus. I don't get it, but it wouldn't be the first time.

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Posted by: Beth ( )
Date: April 18, 2023 12:30AM

it seems you would compare them by area. I’m not pi r squaring anything that isn’t related to portholes in the new duck house I'm thinking about building.

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