Accurate, Focused Research on Law, Technology and Knowledge Discovery Since 2002

A Christian Nation? Understanding the Threat of Christian Nationalism to American Democracy and Culture

PPRI: “The rising influence of Christian nationalism in some segments of American politics poses a major threat to the health of our democracy. Increasingly, the major battle lines of the culture war are being drawn between a right animated by a Christian nationalist worldview and Americans who embrace the country’s growing racial and religious diversity. This new PRRI/Brookings survey of more than 6,000 Americans takes a closer look at the underpinnings of Christian nationalism, providing new measures to estimate the proportion of Americans who adhere to and reject Christian nationalist ideology. The survey also examines how Christian nationalist views intersect with white identity, anti-Black sentiment, support of patriarchy, antisemitism, anti-Muslim sentiments, anti-immigrant attitudes, authoritarianism, and support for violence. Additionally, the survey explores the influence Christian nationalism has within our two primary political parties and major religious subgroups and what this reveals about the state of American democracy and the health of our society.

Measuring Christian Nationalism – To measure Christian nationalism, the PRRI/Brookings Christian Nationalism Survey included a battery of five questions about the relationship between Christianity, American identity, and the U.S. government. Respondents were asked whether they completely agree, mostly agree, mostly disagree, or completely disagree with each of the following statements:

  • The U.S. government should declare America a Christian nation.
  • U.S. laws should be based on Christian values.
  • If the U.S. moves away from our Christian foundations, we will not have a country anymore.
  • Being Christian is an important part of being truly American.
  • God has called Christians to exercise dominion over all areas of American society.
  • The answers across all five questions are highly correlated, with a Cronbach’s alpha of 0.92, and they were combined to create a Christian nationalism scale. The Christian nationalism scale combines answers to these questions using an additive scale and recalibrates the scores to values from 0 (low) to 1 (high). Appendix A contains a more in-depth explanation of scale construction…”

Sorry, comments are closed for this post.