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(07/19/10) -

Britons and Canadians Side with Evolution, Not Americans

(Angus Reid Global Monitor) – Many people in Britain and Canada believe in the theory of evolution, according to a poll by Angus Reid Public Opinion. 68 per cent of Britons—and 61 per cent of Canadians—believe human beings evolved from less advanced life forms over millions of years.

(Angus Reid Global Monitor) – Many people in Britain and Canada believe in the theory of evolution, according to a poll by Angus Reid Public Opinion. 68 per cent of Britons—and 61 per cent of Canadians—believe human beings evolved from less advanced life forms over millions of years.

In the United States, 47 per cent of respondents believe God created human beings in their present form within the last 10,000 years.

Charles Darwin’s "The Origin of Species" was first published in 1859. The book details the British naturalist’s theory that all organisms gradually evolve through the process of natural selection. Darwin’s views were antagonistic to creationism, the belief that a more powerful being or a deity created life.

In the United States, the debate on the topic accelerated after the 1925 Scopes trial, which tested a law that banned the teaching of evolution in Tennessee public schools. In 2004, Georgia’s Cobb County was at the centre of a controversy on whether science textbooks that explain evolutionary theory should include disclaimer stickers.

Last month, Waterville Mayor Paul LePage—who is running for governor in Maine as a Republican—defended his support for the teaching of creationism in schools, saying, "Quite frankly, it’s a learning tool for our kids. I think we should teach them everything possible and let them make their own minds up on how they want to live their lives."

Polling Data

Which of these statements comes closest to your own point of view regarding the origin and development of human beings on earth?

 

CAN

USA

BRI

Human beings evolved from less advanced life forms over millions of years

61%

35%

68%

God created human beings in their present form within the last 10,000 years

24%

47%

16%

Not sure

15%

18%

15%

Source: Angus Reid Public Opinion
Methodology: Online interviews with 1,009 Canadian adults, 1,002 American adults and 2,011 British adults, conducted from Jul. 1 to Jul. 9, 2010. Margins of error are 3.1 per cent (CAN and USA) and 2.2 per cent (BRI).

Complete Poll (PDF)