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Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Real Clear Religion

Here's a helpful website that I just learned about from a Research on Religion podcast (see below): Real Clear Religion for those of you interested in religion. It is an information aggregation site that seeks to identify and provide links to interesting and high quality articles on religion. For instance, I was quickly able to find good articles on religion and science as well as an editorial by Jimmy Carter on the death penalty. Here is how Real Clear Religion describes itself:
Real Clear Religion is a catch-all source for religion stories, opinion and controversy. Everyday the Real Clear Religion team scours the Web to find the best religion news and analysis to help readers of all faiths better understand one another. We cover religion in itself and religion as it touches our lives through music, books, business, history and -- yes, sigh -- politics.
It is actually part of a much larger site, which dedicates itself to a number of different topics (e.g., Real Clear Sports, Real Clear Science, Real Clear Politics, etc.)

The editor, Jeremy Lott, occasionally writes his own articles, either for the site or for another outlet to which he then provides a link. Here's an interesting one he wrote just prior to President Obama's State of the Union address: "Is the Era of Big Religion Over," which (amongst other things) dispels such myths as the US is becoming more secular and that people of higher education and income attend church at lower rates than people of lower education and income (just the opposite is true). Here's an interesting fact: Did you know that 21% of self-described atheists believe in God (gotta wonder about the education level of some atheists since they don't seem to know what the word "atheist" means).

Lott was recently interviewed by Anthony Gill of Research on Religion ("Jeremy Lott on Real Clear Religion"), which is how I learned about the website. Here's a description of the interview from the Research on Religion website:
If you need to get a daily fix of religious-related news, where are you going to go? Real Clear Religion, of course! Jeremy Lott, the editor of Real Clear Religion and other related news portals, joins us to chat about how the Interwebs have changed the way we hear about religious news. He reveals the history of the “Real Clear” network of news sites (or “intelligent aggregators”) and how RCR fits into that general model of internet sites. We then talk about the various media trends Jeremy has seen over the years, including some discussion on the state of religion & politics and the upcoming election.

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