What would Darwin think?
That's one way of looking at it. A recent Pew survey, for example, found 42 percent of Americans believe humans have existed in their present form only (i.e., are creationists). But we really shouldn't be too surprised. Several polls have looked into the level of atheism and religiosity in the early 21st century, and most generate consistent results: between 39 and 44 % of Brits do not believe in God (compared with single digits in the U.S.). That leaves upwards of 61 % who are susceptible to supernatural explanations of things like the diversity of life.
I know that mixing disparate poll results is bad form -- differences in sampling techniques can play havoc with meta-results, for one thing -- but if we assume all the stats are representative, then it would appear that only two-thirds of the U.K. faithful are creationism junkies. The numbers in the U.S. aren't exactly the same, but they show a similar trend. With near 90 % of the populace calling itself religious, only 65 % of the country wants creationism taught, either alone or along with evolution.
What does this say about the never-ending debate we science bloggers are having on this side of the pond over the compatibility of science and religion?