56% of British Christians believe that the anti-capitalist Occupy London protestors at St Paul’s Cathedral should not have been evicted by police and bailiffs, according to a poll from the Bible Society. 29% backed their removal, with 15% unsure what to think.
The results were released on 28 February 2012, in the early hours of which the eviction occurred, following judgment against the protestors in the Court of Appeal on 22 February. The fieldwork was almost certainly undertaken online between the two dates but this is not clearly stated.
The Bible Society’s sample was probably unrepresentative, in the sense of not being constructed according to recognized quota or random methods and of being unweighted. It may have been, at least in part, self-selecting.
All that was reported is that ‘a range of Christians from various organisations including our own supporters’ were interviewed, and that ‘over 800 people replied’. The Society’s press release is at:
The survey also asked Christians whether the Church should have been on the side of the protestors or the City of London, to which 40% responded the protestors, 2% the City and 59% neither. Questioned ‘where would Jesus be?’ the answers were as follows:
Preaching in the City – 14%
In a TV studio – 0%
In a tent outside with the protestors – 13%
In the Cathedral praying – 3%
Acting as a mediator – 10%
None of the above, He would do something none of us expected – 60%
The Bible Society claims that this is the first survey of Christian opinion about Occupy London since the protests began on 15 October 2011. This is incorrect.
As BRIN has noted, the topic was covered in some detail in the December 2011 CPanel of practising UK Christians, albeit 56% (the identical proportion to that in the Bible Society poll) then opposed forcible eviction. See: