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Old 09-28-2015, 11:53 AM   #1
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How secular family values stack up

Very good article which to me states the obvious, but I realize to many people, that may not be the case.

How secular family values stack up - LA Times

Quote:
For nearly 40 years, Bengston has overseen the Longitudinal Study of Generations, which has become the largest study of religion and family life conducted across several generational cohorts in the United States. When Bengston noticed the growth of nonreligious Americans becoming increasingly pronounced, he decided in 2013 to add secular families to his study in an attempt to understand how family life and intergenerational influences play out among the religionless.

He was surprised by what he found: High levels of family solidarity and emotional closeness between parents and nonreligious youth, and strong ethical standards and moral values that had been clearly articulated as they were imparted to the next generation.

“Many nonreligious parents were more coherent and passionate about their ethical principles than some of the ‘religious' parents in our study,” Bengston told me. “The vast majority appeared to live goal-filled lives characterized by moral direction and sense of life having a purpose.”


...

The results of such secular child-rearing are encouraging. Studies have found that secular teenagers are far less likely to care what the “cool kids” think, or express a need to fit in with them, than their religious peers. When these teens mature into “godless” adults, they exhibit less racism than their religious counterparts, according to a 2010 Duke University study. Many psychological studies show that secular grownups tend to be less vengeful, less nationalistic, less militaristic, less authoritarian and more tolerant, on average, than religious adults.

...

Secular adults are more likely to understand and accept the science concerning global warming, and to support women's equality and gay rights. One telling fact from the criminology field: Atheists were almost absent from our prison population as of the late 1990s, comprising less than half of 1% of those behind bars, according to Federal Bureau of Prisons statistics.
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Old 09-29-2015, 03:59 AM   #2
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“Many nonreligious parents were more coherent and passionate about their ethical principles than some of the ‘religious' parents in our study,”
Note the complete absence of shock on my face at this discovery.

Quote:
Studies have found that secular teenagers are far less likely to care what the “cool kids” think, or express a need to fit in with them, than their religious peers.
Basic human nature 101 at play as well. The more parents restrict the sorts of things their children are allowed to experience or explore, things that dare to go against their particular worldview, the more curious their children will be when they finally come in contact with those forbidden things. Especially when their friends make it sound so much more fun and cool than what they'd been led to believe from their parents and religious leaders.

And since children who grow up in ultra-restrictive households have absolutely no basis for figuring out how to handle dealing with this "no-no" stuff other than, "It's bad/just don't do or support it because...reasons!", that'll only add to whatever problems arise as a result. And they won't be able to talk about their experiences with their parents without fear of being shamed or shunned for going "against their faith" and "sinning". Just look at the Duggar family for a classic example of this very thing in action.

Plus, it's just flat out insulting for people to presume that because someone isn't religious, that naturally means they have no morals or reason for being a good, decent person. I don't get how people who think like that honestly believe that there's absolutely no other possible way for non-religious people to learn how to be good, upstanding members of society.
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Old 09-29-2015, 01:21 PM   #3
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People that are brought up with a religious background believe that the core of their moral values are based on religious teachings. Reasonable, because that is the context in which they were taught those values. Having sex outside of a committed relationship or taking something that does not belong to them is immoral because it is a sin. They see non-religious people doing these things without any concern for eternal damnation.

Religion will be winning this argument for the time being.
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Old 09-29-2015, 01:50 PM   #4
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my guess is that class and geography may have more than a little to do with this.
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