Eagle Forum Legislative Alerts

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Depression Up, Religion Down at College

A new survey reveals that the percentage of college students who are depressed is at record high levels. At the same time, fewer college students have a religious affiliation than ever before. More than 40 years ago, in 1971, the percentage of college students who denied having a religious affiliation was only 15.4%. In the latest survey, that percentage has nearly doubled, to 27.5%. That alarming increase may be causing the decline in the percentage of students who report above average emotional well-being. About half of college students no longer feel they have an emotional well-being that is above average, and many students report that they are frequently depressed. Increased alcohol consumption is not the culprit this time, because several decades ago alcohol was made legal for teenagers and alcoholic consumption by teens was double what it is now. Instead, the likely cause is ideological, and financial.

With each new year, the secondary school education curriculum becomes more liberal and more atheistic. With the exception of homeschooling and a small number of Christian high schools, students are taught to turn away from God, their parents, and the Founders of America. It should come as no surprise that these students are becoming depressed in increasing percentages.

The financial debt imposed on students is staggering. Even after adjusting for inflation, the average cost of college has more than doubled in the past 30 years, and more than tripled at public colleges. In the past ten years, the amount of student debt has increased from $509 billion to a suffocating $1.31 trillion. That is indeed depressing, and many students are obviously not getting their money’s worth. Campus counseling centers are flooded with visits by troubled students. Counselors should be questioning the liberal ideology that is taking students down the road of depression.

Listen to the radio commentary here:

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