Myth or Fact: African-Americans Are More Likely to Be Religious
- A large majority of African-Americans who are unaffiliated with any particular faith (72%) say religion plays at least a somewhat important role in their lives; nearly half (45%) of unaffiliated African-Americans say religion is very important in their lives, roughly three times the percentage who say this among the religiously unaffiliated population overall (16%).
- African-Americans express a high degree of comfort with religion's role in politics, with roughly six in ten saying that houses of worship should express their views on social and political topics and roughly half saying that there has been too little expression of faith and prayer by political leaders. At the same time, most African-Americans support certain restrictions on the mingling of politics and religious institutions, with nearly six in ten (58%) saying that churches and other houses of worship should refrain from endorsing political candidates.
- The link between religion and some social and political attitudes in the African-American community is similar to that seen among the population overall. For instance, just as in the general public, African-Americans who are more religiously observant are more likely to oppose abortion and homosexuality and more likely to report higher levels of conservative ideology.
- On a variety of other questions, including political party identification and opinions about the proper role of government in providing services to the citizenry and assistance to the poor, there are few differences in the views of African-Americans across religious groups. Perhaps most strikingly, the partisan leanings of African-Americans from every religious background tilt heavily in the Democratic direction.