Many Americans see religious discrimination in U.S.
Religion & Liberty Online

Many Americans see religious discrimination in U.S.

Americans say some religious groups continue to be discriminated against and disadvantaged, according to recent surveys by Pew Research Center. The surveys asked Americans which of three religious groups face discrimination: Jews, Muslims, and evangelical Christians.

More than three-in-four Americans (82 percent) say Muslims are subject to at least some discrimination, and a majority says Muslims are discriminated against a lot. These results have not changed since the question was asked in 2016.

Roughly two-thirds of Americans (64 percent) also say Jews face at least some discrimination in the U.S., with about one-in-four (24 percent) saying the group is discriminated against a lot. This result is up 20 percentage points from the last time this question was asked in 2016.

A majority of Americans also say that evangelicals suffer at least some discrimination, with nearly one-in-five (18 percent) saying such Christians face a lot of discrimination.

Perhaps not surprisingly in our hyper-partisan age, the results are heavily tilted by political affiliation.

Democrats and those who lean toward the Democratic Party are more likely than Republicans and Republican leaners to say Muslims face at least some discrimination in the U.S. (92 percent vs. 69 percent). Democrats also are more likely than Republicans to say Jews face discrimination (70 percent vs. 55 percent). When it comes to evangelicals, though, Republicans are much more likely than Democrats to say the group faces discrimination (70 percent vs. 32 percent).

Most Americans, though, agree that being Muslim comes with the most disadvantages. More than six-in-ten (63 percent) say that being Muslim hurts someone’s chances for advancement in American society at least a little, including 31 percent who say it hurts their chances a lot. In contrast, only one-in- say being Jewish hurts someone’s chances of getting ahead, while 15 percent say the same about being evangelical.

Joe Carter

Joe Carter is a Senior Editor at the Acton Institute. Joe also serves as an editor at the The Gospel Coalition, a communications specialist for the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention, and as an adjunct professor of journalism at Patrick Henry College. He is the editor of the NIV Lifehacks Bible and co-author of How to Argue like Jesus: Learning Persuasion from History's Greatest Communicator (Crossway).