Tuesday, March 31, 2009
Despite the Catholic Church's official opposition to abortion and embryonic stem-cell research, a Gallup analysis finds almost no difference between rank-and-file American Catholics and American non-Catholics in terms of finding the two issues morally acceptable.
An analysis of Gallup surveys conducted in 2006, 2007, and 2008 has found that Catholics are more likely to believe that abortion, sexual relations between unmarried people, divorce, embryonic stem cell research, and homosexual relations are morally acceptable than are non-Catholics. Although practicing Catholics are more likely than the non-Catholic population as a whole to adhere to Catholic and traditional Christian teaching on these matters, they are less likely to believe these acts are immoral than are non-Catholics who attend church regularly. For example, 53% of Catholics who attend church regularly believe that sexual relations between unmarried people is morally acceptable-- compared to 30% of non-Catholics who attend church regularly.
The accompanying chart shows the percentage of Catholics and non-Catholics who find each of the moral issues morally acceptable. Catholics are at least slightly more liberal than non-Catholics on the issues of gambling (an issue to which the Catholic church is not totally opposed), sex between an unmarried man and woman, homosexual relations, and having a baby out of wedlock. Catholics are essentially tied with non-Catholics on the moral acceptability of abortion, divorce, and stem-cell research using human embryos. Only on the death penalty are Catholics slightly less likely than non-Catholics to find the issue morally acceptable.
Click on the headline to read the complete report.
Posted by Harry Liggett at 4:46 PM