Is religion toxic or a tonic for our nation's civic life? The question often inspires passion, and vitriol, on both sides. Professional atheists like Christopher Hitchens argue that "religion poisons everything," while advocates for religion, like Glenn Beck, see faith in God as the antidote to all that ails America. To understand religion's role in America today, we have spent the last five years exhaustively examining the many ways that religion affects American society — from our families to our politics to our communities. We have done so with what we believe to be the most comprehensive survey of religion in America ever done, supplemented by every other source of relevant data we could find. The result is our new book, American Grace: How Religion Divides and Unites Us. Our objective is not to take sides on religion, but only to report what the data say.
Campbell, David E., and Robert D. Putnam. "Religious People are 'Better Neighbors'." USA Today, November 15, 2010.