Religious ‘nones’ plateau in US

by ian

The rise of religiously unaffiliated Americans is beginning to taper off.

For years we’ve reported on the increasing numbers of the so-called “religious nones”- Americans who aren’t necessarily atheists, but who don’t identify with any religion. But religion data analyst Ryan Burge says that could be “largely over ” or at the very least won’t be rising at the same levels we’ve seen over the last few decades.

Multiple surveys suggest the number of non-religious Americans has remained largely stagnant in recent years. For example, the 2023 Cooperative Election Study showed 36% of Americans claiming to be non-religious. It’s a number largely unchanged from 2020.

Compare that to the period between 2008 and 2013, when religious nones jumped from 21% to 30%. Burge says the data suggests the end of nominal religion in the US, thereby revealing the true believers.

“The loose topsoil has been scooped off and hauled away, leaving nothing but hard bedrock underneath,” Burge said.