Growing Extremism: The Hidden Roots of White Supremacy with Robert P. Jones
PRRI’s President and Founder Robert P. Jones recently was a guest on Jennifer Rubin’s Green Room Podcast to discuss his forthcoming book The Hidden Roots of White Supremacy and the Path to a Shared American Future, which examines the religious origins of white supremacy in our country and its lingering impact on today’s growing Christian nationalist movement. Jones stated: “Frederick Douglass’ first autobiography published in 1845 has this searing passage at the end where he documents that the slave auctioneer’s bell and the church bell rang together. They were selling human beings to raise money for the spread of the gospel. This is Douglass’ real-time witness of early Christianity in this country.” Read more about the interview in Jones’ #WhiteTooLong Substack, and pre-order the book here.
F.D.A. Approves First U.S. Over-the-Counter Birth Control Pill
Pam Belluck for The New York Times reports that the FDA approved a birthcontrol pill, Opill, to be sold without a prescription for the first time in the U.S. yesterday, a milestone that could significantly expand access to contraception. The medication is set to become the most effective birth control method available over the counter. Frédérique Welgryn, Perrigo’s global vice president for women’s health, stated that the company is committed to making the pill “accessible and affordable to women and people of all ages” and that the company would have a consumer assistance program to provide the pill at no cost to some women. PRRI research finds that the vast majority of Americans oppose laws (84%) that restrict what types of birth control can be used to prevent pregnancy.
Mormon Leaders Push Back Against One-Party Politics
David Campbell of Notre Dame University discusses the shifting ideological affiliation of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints for the Conversation. Despite the church being on par with white Evangelicals in their support of the GOP, church leaders recently released letters telling members not to vote solely for one party, saying that doing so was “a threat to democracy and inconsistent with revealed standards,” and also in part due to a decline in church attendance among members of the faith. While Latter-day Saints are typically conservative on many issues – PRRI has found that only 32% believe that abortion should be legal in all or most cases – LDS members are more accepting of immigrants. Our data also show that LDS members arealso more likely than white Evangelicals to support non-discrimination protections for LGBT people.
Pope Francis Appoints Men and Women To Build a Synodal Church
Thomas Reese for The Religion News Service writes that Pope Francis has recently been busy appointing men and women who support his vision of a synodal church to positions where it matters, such as the college of cardinals, the synod, to the Roman Curia and to archdioceses. Reese explains that 72% of the current cardinal electors have been appointed by Francis, which makes it more likely that the next pope will continue the direction Francis has charted for the church. Francis has appointed more than 50 women as voting members of the synod from different countries, cultures and generations. PRRI’s Health of Congregations study found that 44% of white Catholics and 64% of Hispanic Catholics say they wish their church had more women in positions of leadership.
Read PRRI’s spotlight “Student Loan Debt Is More Burdensome to People of Color and Younger Americans” here.