White Evangelicals More Open to Political Violence Than Non-Christians

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White evangelical Americans are more willing to endorse political violence than their non-Christian counterparts, according to a new survey from the Public Religion Research Institute (PRRI).

Concerns about political violence have been on the rise since the January 6, 2021, attack on the U.S. Capitol, when supporters of former President Donald Trump violently stormed the building in an ill-fated attempt to overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election. White evangelicals, while not collectively responsible for January 6 attack, are among Trump’s most loyal supporters.

The PRRI poll, released on Wednesday, included what it called “disturbing” results that found almost one-fourth of all Americans agree with the following statement: “Because things have gotten so far off track, true American patriots may have to resort to violence in order to save our country.” The new survey found that 23 percent of respondents agreed in 2023, up from 15 percent in 2021.

Among white evangelical Protestants, 31 percent supported the statement—significantly more than non-Christians and religiously unaffiliated Americans, both groups that were open to political violence at the average level of 23 percent. Every other Christian group surveyed supported political violence at rates significantly lower than evangelicals, with some of the groups also supporting the statement less than non-Christians.

The statement was supported by 25 percent of white non-evangelical Protestants and 24 percent of Black Protestants. Only 21 percent of Hispanic Catholics and 20 percent of white Catholics were in favor of potential violence. The survey notes that there were “no differences by church attendance” in the results among white Christians, without specifying whether attendance affected results from the other races surveyed.

Content retrieved from: https://www.newsweek.com/evangelicals-political-violence-non-christians-1838384.

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