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How Religions Impact Americans Politically, Socially and Economically - Essay Example

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Religion is a set of world views, beliefs and cultural systems that humanity uses as a medium to relate to the supernatural, moral values, and spirituality (Farlee, 1999). …
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How Religions Impact Americans Politically, Socially and Economically
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Download file to see previous pages Statistics released by the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) in 2012 have shown that out of the world’s total population, 59 percent is religious, and, the United States, unlike several other Western countries, remains a religiously overwhelming society. This paper will discuss the political, social and economical impact religion has had on the American society, with specific focus on Christianity, Judaism and Hinduism. As a nation, the United States founding was on religion. Majority of the American population is Christian, predominantly 30 percent White Evangelical Protestants, 20 percent Liberal Protestants and 8 percent African-American Protestants. 2 percent practices Judaism and 0.5 percent are Hindus. Most of the non-Christian religions in the United States found their way there after the 1965 Immigration and Nationality Act that removed restrictions that previously limited foreigners who could immigrate. As portrayed by Farlee (1999), the American society has grown into a successful multi-cultural, multi-ethnic and multi-religious nation. From the nation’s founding fathers to present day presidents, the American leadership has portrayed the significance of redirecting public policy towards enhancing the future health of the nation in religion, especially Christianity, though not to dictate that it is a Christian nation. Many political and social goals have been achieved through the practice of religion, even if it was indirectly. Christianity and the influence of Jewish ideas are clearly manifested in the fundamental political framework of America, as is evident in the opening statement of the Declaration of Independence. It is declared, just like in the bible, that men were all created equal and endowed with unalienable rights including life and the pursuit of liberty and freedom. Even from the early days of the Puritan settlers, the scripture determined the legislation. As concurred by Ballo (1976), they believed that the scripture held the moral rules for the government and direction of humans in their duty to fellow man and God and subsequently adopted a legal code with 79 statutes, of which half bore biblical references. The Republican coalition and the pact with the Christian Right were splintered by President Obama’s election in 2008. This opened up the opportunity to the new coalition between the new evangelical Christians and the Democratic Party. Although the new evangelical Christians identified themselves as progressive and politically moderate, it was evident from the 2008 poll that the Democratic Party had openly adopted Christian foundations. This showed its effect in another unexpected manner when previously separate religious groups joined forces based on political allegiances to fight the unbiblical gay marriage. This saw the Mormons and conservative Catholics come together to front the California’s Proposition 8 that fought gay marriages, also including international policy among Jews and Protestants. Although the government’s religious connections have been growing, causing a slight relationship sway with the Protestants, they (Protestants) remain intact in their presumption of the politics of the US, with their visions still upheld regarding gender and sexuality. Quite notably, Hinduism has no significant impact on the American political system as much as do Christianity and Judaism, but might be remotely playing smaller roles through the strong presence of Hinduism in the American ...Download file to see next pages Read More
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