Wake Up Call – Not Seen On TV – What You May Not Know About…
What You May Not Know About…
The Bible Belt
Having forged itself into a formidable player in U.S. politics over the past several decades, the Evangelical Christian movement trades heavily on its moral political capital with issues such as abortion and the sanctity of marriage. However, the Barna Group uncovered some surprising results in its survey of divorce statistics. Born-again Christians have a 35% divorce rate – the exact same amount as every other denomination in the country, including atheists and agnostics. Furthermore, 23% of the born-again demographic has had multiple divorces, making its claims of superiority in this realm less than convincing.
The vast land ruled by the proudly god- less Communist party since 1949 may officially seem a barren spiritual wasteland by Western standards. But in a society so large and complex, spirituality thrives with surprising regularity, as outlaw organizations such as the falun Gong have become standard-bearers for religious freedom in the country. Christianity continues to make its mark on the region as well with a second Vatican-approved bishop recently ordained by the state-run Catholic church. Christianity in China represents the third largest Christian population in the world, with some surmising that it may become the largest Christian population in the world.
In the past decade, the persistent problem of undernourishment in the developing world has been matched by the ironic emergence of a global obesity pandemic. Areas once known for severe famine now also battle the spectre of obesity caused by high fat and sugar in the foods available. In America, where many children still go to sleep hungry, one in four people deal with the problem of obesity. Much of the developed Western world, in areas such as Finland, Germany, Scotland and Australia, have obesity figures close to 20% of their populations. Food alone is clearly not the answer to the problem of malnutrition.
The Bush administration has been talking tough about Iran for years concerning their ability to produce nu- clear weapons with many pundits suspecting the potential for war on the horizon. Yet 16 U.S. intelligence agencies recently concluded that any Iranian covert programs to develop nuclear warheads ceased in 2003. The tough lessons from Iraq will undoubtedly make any further acts of aggression on our part more difficult to pass through Congress and the American people. Mending the international wounds that now exist between Iran and America will require some masterful diplomacy from the next administration, which will have to understand and balance the threat that Iran still poses to the region.
India’s success in becoming a global economic power in recent years, with oil barons such as Mukesh Ambani constructing a billion dollar 60-story home in Mumbai, has not yet addressed the problem of extreme poverty in the country. 35% of the Indian population survives on no more than one dollar a day. With a rising middle class in the oil and technology sectors, the public face of India has been one of cautious optimism. Yet 10% of the population still earns a third of the total income in the country, and the widening gap between rich and poor will have to be bridged in order for a true economic transformation.