Your Take: Church and beer tweets study
July 11th, 2012
01:30 PM ET

Your Take: Church and beer tweets study

By Anna-Lysa Gayle, CNN

(CNN)–Twitter isn’t exactly scientific evidence, but it can produce conversation starters. Many readers registered a variety of responses to Dan Merica's recent story, about a study that said Americans tweeted more about church than beer.

The study was conducted by Floatingsheep.org, looking at geotagged tweets with the words "church" or "beer" in them.  Geotagging allows users of the social media site to indicate their precise location when they send a message.

More tweets about church than beer came from the southeastern United States. On the other hand,  more tweets about beer than church came from parts of the Northeast.

Stories that combine alcohol and religion always get lots of attention from our readers. Look no further than J. Wilson's beer-only lenten fast. His story about his 46-day beer-only fast racked up a ton of comments, tweets and Facebook recommends.

The beer/church Twitter comparison also got people typing.

Best-selling author Lee Strobel was interested in the geographic breakdown:
[tweet https://twitter.com/LeeStrobel/status/222708881648914432%5D

Strobel, a journalist turned pastor, has written several self-help guides for Christians to spread and rediscover their faith, including the popular "The Case for Christ."

For Belief Blog commenter Willow, the two words aren't an either-or proposition.

“This study has a fallacy. The two terms are not mutually exclusive, since most Christians I know also drink beer. It is the extremists who don't. Christianity does not in and of itself forbid alcohol; it's certain sects within it that do."

In the same vein, @Danny_Perez tweeted:

"Christian hipster" Brett McCracken chimed in on Twitter along the same lines.
[tweet https://twitter.com/brettmccracken/status/222431199866531842%5D

McCracken has previously noted on this blog that there are plenty of "Christian hipsters" who drink. "Christian hipsters tend to serve scotch at their small-group Bible studies, and are largely supportive of such things (mostly good things, I might add) as locally grown produce, thrift stores, fixed-gear bikes, Jon Stewart, traveling abroad, Wes Anderson films, Wendell Berry books, and tobacco (in all forms except chewing).”

Others disagreed with the study's findings.

Commenter Derp thought the study was lacking detail.

“The study should have included all forms of religion.” Derp argued the study only used the “key word of 'church'. It did not use mosque or synagogue, or temple. So it only actually used one religion, Christianity.”

Lots of commenters on the story sought to combine church and beer.

"This is why churches need to drop the coffee and start serving beer... beer church tweets! Where do I sign up?"

And one of our favorite comments came from an anonymous commenter who put together a top ten list.

Ten Reasons Why Beer Is Better Than Religion

1. Both have a strange tendency to wear silly hats

The comments section is open here, so don't miss your chance to chime in.

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Uncategorized

soundoff (33 Responses)
  1. seo

    I love this! So amazing that I am definitely coming back again tomorrow. seo http://fiverr.com/twnseobacklink

    April 24, 2013 at 1:30 pm |
  2. Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things

    Prayer changes things

    July 12, 2012 at 8:52 pm |
    • Jesus

      Prayer does not; you are such a LIAR. You have NO proof it changes anything! A great example of prayer proven not to work is the Christians in jail because prayer didn't work and their children died. For example: Susan Grady, who relied on prayer to heal her son. Nine-year-old Aaron Grady died and Susan Grady was arrested.

      An article in the Journal of Pediatrics examined the deaths of 172 children from families who relied upon faith healing from 1975 to 1995. They concluded that four out of five ill children, who died under the care of faith healers or being left to prayer only, would most likely have survived if they had received medical care.

      The statistical studies from the nineteenth century and the three CCU studies on prayer are quite consistent with the fact that humanity is wasting a huge amount of time on a procedure that simply doesn’t work. Nonetheless, faith in prayer is so pervasive and deeply rooted, you can be sure believers will continue to devise future studies in a desperate effort to confirm their beliefs:!

      July 13, 2012 at 10:53 am |
    • Lily Chase

      Please stop posting this. I believe it as much as any Christian does, but you're being obnoxious and giving the rest of us a bad name.
      Stop contributing to the general stereotyping of those who pray in earnest.
      Thank you.

      July 13, 2012 at 11:48 pm |
  3. I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

    "Stories that combine alcohol and religion always get lots of attention from our readers."

    Not nearly as many comments about gay issues and religion!

    The original beer/church story garnered about 304 comments in approximately 55 hours. The "Episcopal Church approves same-sex blessing service" story accumulated 910 in just 35 hours, and that was relatively slow for such topics.

    Not a very insightful opinion there Ms. Gayle.

    July 11, 2012 at 9:27 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      Sorry – bad proofreading (due to having to circumvent the filter)

      "Not neally as many comments as stories about gay issues and religion!"

      July 11, 2012 at 9:29 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV


      Clearly I'm tired and should stop.

      July 11, 2012 at 9:30 pm |
  4. William Demuth

    catholic engineer

    New York City: Largest producer of wealth on the whole Planet!.

    The religious red states are the greatest debtor states in the union, feeding their indoctrinated children from the food stolen from the mouths of blue state children.

    The fundies don't get it. We marched south and burnt their civiization to the ground once, and some of us are iching to do it again.

    July 11, 2012 at 4:24 pm |
    • BG

      What does an "ich" feel like? The 'Union troops' are all sick to their stomach?

      Please don't throw up on the Confederacy.

      July 11, 2012 at 5:09 pm |
    • Mo Hammud Sizlack

      You've never heard of the Ichy & Scrachy show?

      July 11, 2012 at 5:59 pm |
    • Horst Nordfink

      I tell my girlfriend that when I call her a bich, it is a major compliment since Baron Bich made a huge fortune making the first commercially successful ballpoint pen, the bic, and I am actually colmlimenting her resourcefulness and insight.

      July 11, 2012 at 6:19 pm |
    • lol

      next time you think you're funny, reconsider.

      July 11, 2012 at 6:28 pm |
  5. ME II

    Since the original article only brought in 300-400 comments, I suspect that this article was posted mainly for the purpose of posting Lee Strobel's tweet.

    July 11, 2012 at 4:00 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      @ME II,

      that's a reasonable observation. The original post was not very popular with commenters. They could well be trying to emphasize the relevance? of a tweet on a study of tweets.

      Twitter – one more sign that our machine overlords will rise imminently.

      July 11, 2012 at 4:34 pm |
  6. Honey Badger Dont Care

    CNN gets more bang for the buck by writing a story about the story that they wrote about using what we say about it.

    Lazy much?

    July 11, 2012 at 2:41 pm |
    • sam


      I think the best part, though, is how much trolling they likely had to wade through to pick out choice comments.

      July 11, 2012 at 3:05 pm |
    • Harvey Wallbanger

      Based on the comments they chose, I think it is safe to say that they didn't read them, but instead threw darts at a few pages printed up, and used those with so slap-dap filler to link them.

      July 11, 2012 at 3:22 pm |
  7. catholic engineer

    As a catholic in the Bible belt, I've noticed a thing or two. In the American Southeast, people are producers: oil, gas, cattle, wheat, corn, cotton, hogs, dairy products etc. This is work. When there's a ripple in the economy, these folks are the first to feel it. It makes people conservative. It causes them to think about a higher power. In other sections of the country, people are mainly consumers. Well provided for, mere consumers have more leisure to think about beer and other comforts. To them, we don't need an oil industry. A gallon of gas originates at the corner store.

    July 11, 2012 at 2:17 pm |
    • I'm not a GOPer, nor do I play one on TV

      @catholic engineer,

      what a preposterous post. As an engineer you should be a better analyst of data.

      All those midwestern farmers don't produce corn, milk, cheese, wheat, barley, etc, etc? They're only consumers? Absurd!

      The highest concentration of more "beer" tweets versus "church" tweets is Wisconsin. Plenty of agricultural producers there.

      ps. They produce beer in Milwaukee.

      July 11, 2012 at 2:25 pm |
    • Righteo

      That's so true. Only people in the South work. The rest of us are regularly sent checks so that we can sit around and consume, believing that oil comes from the magic oil fairy at the corner store.

      What an impressive intellect you have!

      July 11, 2012 at 2:26 pm |
    • Bootyfunk

      yeah? where'd you get the computer you're typing on? where was the technology developed? where were the satellites developed and assembled that allow you to use the internet?

      you say people in the NE and the west don't produce? because they work developing computers and not in a mine means they don't produce? that's such cr@p. and i guess you buying those computers and using the internet don't make you a consumer?

      we get tired of hearing you guys are the only hard workers in the country. that's small minded propaganda.

      July 11, 2012 at 2:32 pm |
    • sam

      Holy crap. Dafuq did I just read??

      July 11, 2012 at 3:03 pm |
    • Rynomite

      Largest Producers of Natural Gas: Texas, Wyoming
      Largest Producers of Oil: Texas, Alaska
      Largest Producers of Cattle: Texas, Nebraska
      Largest Producers of Wheat: Kansas, North Dakota
      Largest Producers of Corn: Iowa, Illinois
      Largest Producers of Hogs: Iowa, North Carolina
      Largest Producers of Dairy: California, Wisconsin

      With the exception of North Carolina, no South East States are a top 2 producer of any of the commodities you just mentioned. Others have pointed out your flawed thinking even if they were top producers, but I felt you would probably want to be educated in the fact that your stats are totally wrong regardless. Looks like the Midwest and West are producing everything while the Southeast sits on their butts and reads bibles!

      July 11, 2012 at 3:26 pm |
    • Answer

      Stupid religious d-o-u-c-h-e-s are all the same.. making up stuff just to satisfy their silly religion.

      July 11, 2012 at 4:11 pm |
    • ME II

      @catholic engineer,
      So are you saying that people that don't labor, don't work?

      July 11, 2012 at 4:11 pm |
    • Sim34

      catholic engineer
      Hate to tell you this, but everyone else here is right. The Southeast produces little, which is why there is so much unemployment. This desperation explains why they cling to their bibles and guns, as a wise man once observed.

      July 13, 2012 at 8:26 am |
  8. Bootyfunk

    this worthless story is up twice? w.t.f. CNN? ran out of real news?

    July 11, 2012 at 2:10 pm |
    • John Thomas

      Fluffy analysis of a fluffball story.

      CNN must get let the journalism club at the local junior high produce these pieces.

      July 11, 2012 at 2:29 pm |
  9. Doc Vestibule

    Unibroue has a beer for every Christian!
    Waiting for The End Times? Have some "Fin Du Monde".
    Enjoy condeming sinners from a fiery pulpit? Have some "Maudite".
    Perhaps you're in need of an exorcism? Pop the cork on a bottle of "Eau Benite".
    Remember that your time on Earth is but a passing thought – get a taste of oblivion with "Ephemere".
    or simply revel in the divine gifts that are hops and barley with a pint of "Don de Dieu".

    Careful though – these brews from Quebec pack a wallop!

    July 11, 2012 at 2:00 pm |
    • Nii

      Canadians need help with Doc on their shores! lol

      July 11, 2012 at 2:09 pm |
    • hawaiiguest


      Trying to be a cheap knockoff of cappie and others tells us more about you than anything else you've written.

      July 11, 2012 at 2:12 pm |
    • Horst Nordfink

      That's not true, HawaiiGuest! Nii has said much crazier things than that! The hilarious part is that Nii lives in Ghana and has never seen Canada. But not having the slightest clue of what you are talking about is a common characteristic of religious fanatics.

      July 11, 2012 at 6:13 pm |
    • derp

      "Remember that your time on Earth is but a passing thought – get a taste of oblivion with "Ephemere"

      I keep this on tap at home.

      Unibrou makes fantastic brews.

      July 12, 2012 at 2:37 pm |
About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.