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Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Religious Freedom and Human Rights

In previous posts, I have written about the virtues of religious freedom ("A Case for Religious Freedom," "Religious Freedom and Religious Violence"). Religious freedom is positively associated with political freedom, freedom of the press, gender empowerment, and longevity of democracy, while religious restrictions are positively associated with religious persecution and violence.

Here (i.e., below) is a TEDx Talk ("The Number of Religious Freedom") on the state of religious freedom around the world by Brian Grim, PhD, the Director of Cross-National Data and Senior Researcher in Religion and World Affairs at the Pew Research Center's Forum on Religion & Public Life in Washington, D.C. He is also the co-author of "The Price of Freedom Denied" with Roger Finke. LIke all TED talks, it is just under 20 minutes long.

As an interesting aside, this TEDx Talk was held at a location along the Via della Conciliazione (i.e., the Road of the Conciliation), which is a street approximately 500 meters (1,600 ft) in length that connects the Vatican and the center of Rome. In other words, the conference was held in Vatican City, but from what I've heard, the powers that be among the TEDx community thought it would be unpopular to say they were holding a TEDx event at the Vatican. This is because TED events tend to attract a disproportionate share of the irreligious or the "spiritual but not religious" crowd.

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