I want someone to give me $1.8 million to study why religion makes people depressed

So, a researcher at a certain medical school has been given a big grant to study how religion makes people healthy.

Part of his research shows how religion makes African Americans, in particular, less depressed (than they would otherwise be).

Any number of problems with this: maybe people who attend church have more community support; maybe people who attend church have churches to go to which means they don't live in totally bombed-out ghettos; maybe we could give a little attention to the structural problems and economic inequities that MAKE people depressed and sick rather than just telling them to pray to get better. (I wonder if the experimental hypothesis will actually conclude that God helps people get better?)

Word on the street is this particular researcher, when on call at the student health clinic on the weekend, refuses on "ethical" grounds to prescribe Plan B (emergency contraception). I guess he thinks the students should just PRAY not to be pregnant.


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