In 1950, the Catholic leader -- Pope Pius XII -- publicly announced that creationism and evolution could co-exist. In 1996, Pope John Paul II went further and stated that evolution was more than a hypothesis. Despite these announcements, a quarter of American Catholics still do not believe in evolution in any form as of 2016.Continue Reading
The U.S. Constitution establishes freedom of religion and, because of this, states have frequently violated the law regarding the teaching of creationism alongside evolution. For example, in 1987, during the Edwards v. Aguillard case, the court ruled that it was unconstitutional for Louisiana state law to mandate the teaching of creationism and evolution.
Only 32 percent of Americans believe that human beings did not evolve by natural processes but were assisted along the way in some form. From the same poll, 33 percent of Americans reject evolution outright as a scientific theory, even though the theory is accepted by the vast majority of scientists.
Sixty-four percent of white evangelical Protestants in the United States believe that human beings existed in present form in the beginning. This contrasts with just 15 percent of mainstream Protestants, 26 percent white Catholic and 50 percent black Protestant. Hispanic Catholics are more likely to reject evolution than white Catholics.Learn more about Earth Science