Thursday, June 18, 2009

the church's future strength in america?

Just finished commenting on a thread over at Novaseeker's (see previous post for link) and figured I'd post it in slightly expanded form here too. An anonymous commenter over there made some interesting remarks...

...[T]he blue-state white birthrate is far below replacement.

What you are going to get are red-state Jesus-freak women who do indeed breed at replacement levels. The GenX and GenY women simply aren't making enough babies to clone themselves in 30 years time. Only about 70 of them will be "here" out of the 100 that you see now, easily outnumbered by Hispanic, Black, and Muslim cultural adherents.

White Jesus freaks, who are building an insular culture, will still be here then. In a way, SWPL-ism is a huge generational scam/fraud practiced on its own adherents. People with a birthrate of 1.6 children per female pretty much half their youth in what...70 years? We are in about years 15-20 of this trend now. We probably have maybe 15-20 more years for it to turn around before the demographic momentum damns these people (SWPLS-and-secular whites) to political irrelevance...

I live near two large churches. The parking lot is full of kids. If anything, I'd guess those folks have about 2.5 kids per family, and they provide all sorts of "social stuff" to keep the kids there from what I've been told... These folks will still be around electorally...but these Power Grlzzzz will not be around in 40 years.

As Sailer has noted again and again, who controls the future is who shows up for it.

Good observations, but he misses the mark significantly as a result of his unfounded assumption that all of those children born into "Jesus Freak" households will grow up to be strong Christians themselves. History doesn't support this, nor do current societal trends. I don't see Christians becoming a more influential voting bloc through the demographic suicide of other ideologies; instead, its influence will also wan over time due to its "spiritual birth rate" being well below replacement from generation to generation. I hope he's right and Christianity makes a resurgence, and it's certainly never impossible, but I can't say I'm expecting it either.

Just look at recent decades as an example. Children attending church used to be a most common thing in America. And look how well that has held up to the feminist onslaught over the years. I don't see the coming generations of churchgoers, who will have been raised in ever-weakening churches and an ever-desensitizing culture, holding onto that faith in droves. Christianity will continue its decline in the U.S. I think, for at least the short term and for the worse for the country. Again, I hope I'm wrong, but I don't see how.

For one, most of these children attend public schools. Not all, and there are many who don't, but most do. So they're getting all the indoctrination they need to rebel against whatever mores their parents try to instill. And this goes many times more so for those who attend mainstream universities. It's a well-known statistic within church circles that more than half of churched kids who attend college turn their backs on their faith by the time they graduate--regardless of public, private, or home/group schooling. And folks like me, who only started attending post-childhood, are rare, and I'd say exceedingly rare if my own anecdotal evidence mirrors my generation's trend.

In light of that, I think it's fair to speculate that as a generation moves from youth to young adulthood to middle age, its overall percentage of traditional religious belief (i.e. not trendy or modern but handed down from previous generations) declines significantly. Many people drop those beliefs and much fewer take them up.* In recent times the churches in our society have not done a great job of providing foundations for lasting faith in young people, due in no small part to the steeping of the young (not to mention their parents) in secular thinking.

Also, more government presence and oversight in society will result in less devotion to religion as a source of morals and truth about the world, if history is any indicator. (Not only does the 20th-century U.S. come to mind but also Rome under Julian the Apostate; we in the States are merely stealing pages from his book.) While I suppose this might not be the case if we end up with an Islamic theocracy or variant thereof when the smoke clears, that would of course bring issues of its own and the resulting power structure would not at all resemble what we have today. So, does anyone really see government presence in and control of daily life abating or even slowing anytime soon? At the current pace that won't happen until we have anarchy, and even that "freedom" will only last until some strong-man or group can establish dominance at the controls.

Those are a couple of starting points; there are more. So let it suffice to say that I don't think we can look at the number of children being raised in churchgoing families as a prelude to what our culture will be shaped by. After all, had that held in the recent past then we wouldn't even be having this discussion.


* This may not be true as people move past middle age into their elder years, but that would be beyond the time frame we're talking about wrt today's generation of children. And I can't imagine it being significant enough to offset the lack of said beliefs among the younger crowd anyway.


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