GettyImages 514451786 300x187 Atheists Overwhelmingly Prefer Hillary Clintonby Michael Avramovich

On these pages, I posted an article about how pro-abortion advocates overwhelmingly support Hillary Clinton’s candidacy for president. But there is another growing demographic group that also enthusiastically supports the candidacy of Hillary Clinton. The Secular Coalition for America, a lobbying group that represents atheists, agnostics, and “free-thinkers,” recently released a presidential voting guide on those issues deemed to be most important to atheists. Candidates were evaluated on their public position on a host of issues, including their views of the separation of church and state, appointment of non-theists to governmental positions, whether religious views should impede reproductive health care access and comprehensive sex education in government schools, whether religious charities that receive government money for social services be mandated to support policies that conflict with the charity’s religious beliefs, whether the candidate would appoint “humanist” chaplains for the military, and whether human activity is the primary cause of global climate change. Donald Trump earned a low “F” grade, according to the atheist group because he has been “generally or consistently hostile or negative” regarding his stance on these issues. Hillary Clinton, on the other hand, earned an “A” grade. As one example of the difference in their viewpoints, Ms. Clinton said that the United States was founded on the “separation between church and state,” whereas Mr. Trump has said that the United States was founded as a Judeo-Christian nation.

According to a recent survey, nearly 1 in 4 Americans now have no affiliation with any religion. And of those, one-half of Americans who have left their church no longer believe in God, with another 20 percent say that they do not like organized religion. So there is a new emerging demographic group in the United States of those who are leaving organized religion and even giving up on God. A July 2016 Pew Research Center poll found non-religious voters prefer Mrs. Clinton to Mr. Trump by an overwhelming 67 to 23 percent margin proving that large numbers of non-religious voters and atheists are also conservative.

Even to a casual observer, the religious landscape in the United States is changing. In addition to new religious traditions including Islam, Buddhism, Hinduism, and Sikhism, there are growing numbers of persons in non-institutional belief systems such as humanism, atheism, and subjective spirituality. I could afford a nice vacation if I had a small coin for every person who told me over the years that they are not religious, but are instead “very spiritual.” Of course, each non-institutional belief system, including humanism and atheism, follow the same philosophical pattern as do most religions. For instance, humanism and atheism each deal with the important existential questions of origin, meaning, morality, and destiny.

In a recent article, Daniel Cox noted:

Diversity is now simply a fact of American religious life. It does not signal the end of religion, but it may make it easier for Americans to abstain from religious involvement and encourage other types of spiritual and philosophical explorations. It may also make atheists more willing to “come out.” . . . Organized religion has never been in jeopardy of dying out due to a single traumatic event. Instead, it is a cumulative series of unanswered challenges that pose the greatest risk. Religious diversity might not represent a dramatic threat to religion, but it may represent another small hole in an already sinking ship.

I suspect that Mr. Cox may not be right in that history is never linear. After all, predictions about the demise and disappearance of religious faith in society have been made and promoted, often with disastrous results, for a long time. And non-believing clergy have certainly not helped the cause of Jesus Christ. It is said that in 2012, millions of American Christians did not vote. Perhaps for many, there was less enthusiasm to vote because Mr. Romney was a Mormon. But for those of us who believe in God, and are citizens of a representative republic, voting is part of our spiritual duty. But if most Christians voted, then I think that the result of elections in this country would be much different. But for our atheist, agnostic, and “free-thinking” friends, I am reminded of the writings of C.S. Lewis, who wrote in The Problem of Pain, “A man can no more diminish God’s glory by refusing to worship Him than a lunatic can put out the sun by scribbling the word ‘darkness’ on the walls of his cell.”