Published On: Sat, Apr 27th, 2013

More Than Half of Evangelicals In America View Islam As a “Violent Religion”, Report


By Mourad Anouar

Morocco News Tribune

Oklahoma, U.S.A |As Americans of all ages are fairly split on how they perceive Islam, the general trend reveals that older Americans have a less positive impression of Islam, according to a new report from Barna Group.

David Kinnaman, president of Barna Group, commented on the findings. “The study raises questions for Christians in America. While Muslims remain a very small part of the entire U.S. population, the world is shrinking in many ways. Events like those in Boston focus the public’s attention on Islam,”

Increasing immigration of Muslims into the country changes population densities. The Internet and social media bring human beings of different faiths and contexts into closer digital proximity. And the implications of events in predominantly Muslim nations, including the Middle East, affect millions around the world. For example, how do U.S. Christians help support persecuted Christians who live in other countries, without demonizing Muslims at the same time?,”

The recent Barna study suggests one-third of Americans (33%) have a favorable perception of Islam, while slightly more (36%) say they have an unfavorable perception of the religion.

Only 5% of Elders—adults who are 67 or older—say they have a “very favorable” perception of Islam, compared to 14% of Mosaics—ages 18 to 28—who say the same. About one in five Elders also say they have a “very unfavorable” perception of Islam (21%), while less than one in eight Mosaics feel that way (13%),”

As for the role of politics in defining people’s perception of Islam, the research indicates that the only group with a lower response of “very favorable” than Elders were Republicans or those who define themselves as so.

Half of political conservatives (50%) say they have at least a somewhat unfavorable perception of Islam, while only about in five (22%) political liberals say the same,” the report said.

The report also examines perceptions based on religious affiliation where Evangelical Christians have the most unfavorable perception of Islam, with two-thirds of evangelicals saying they have an unfavorable impression (62%), and with four in ten evangelicals holding a very unfavorable perception (39%).

Barna Group, a private, non-partisan, for-profit organization Located in Ventura, California, has been conducting and analyzing primary research to understand cultural trends related to values, beliefs, attitudes and behaviors since 1984.