The Nones have just passed the Catholics in numbers, at least according to one survey. And the Evangelical Protestants may have passed their peak. That’s all good news.
It looks like a lot of the gains among the nominally godless have come from the Mainline Protestants, though — so, basically, the people with a pragmatic, already fairly unsuperstitious perspective have shifted labels, abandoning a specific church affiliation. In that sense it’s not a major transition.
Note also the absence of the label “atheist”. It’s kind of padding the ranks to just lump together all the diverse beliefs ranging from outright denial of all gods and supernatural powers to blissful confidence in a divine creator who is not accurately represented by established religion into one catch-all category, “no religion”. The message isn’t so much that more and more people are adopting rationality as it is that more and more people are finding the spectacle of religious fanatics unsavory. That orange line is an impressive granfalloon.
But I’ll take it. It’s a good step forward. Now if only we could put an end to organized atheism’s embrace of the unsavory, too.