Update: More Americans Believe Islam Encourages Violence

July 24, 2003

Source: Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life


On July 24, 2003 the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life reported that "a poll released today by the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life and the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press shows that there has been an important shift in public perceptions of Islam. Fully 44 percent of the American public now believes that Islam is more likely than other religions 'to encourage violence among its believers.' As recently as March 2002, just 25 percent expressed this view... 'Our findings in this area actually point in different directions,' said Melissa Rogers, executive director of the Pew Forum. 'On the one hand, there’s certainly an increase in the number of Americans who believe that Islam encourages violence. Yet at the same time, a narrow majority of the public continues to have favorable views of Muslim-Americans, and only 24 percent have an unfavorable view.'"