Via Radley Balko, a study!
Distrust is the central motivating factor behind why religious people dislike atheists, according to a new study led by University of British Columbia psychologists.
"Where there are religious majorities -- that is, in most of the world -- atheists are among the least trusted people," says lead author Will Gervais, a doctoral student in UBC's Dept. of Psychology. "With more than half a billion atheists worldwide, this prejudice has the potential to affect a substantial number of people."
While reasons behind antagonism towards atheists have not been fully explored, the study -- published in the current online issue of Journal of Personality and Social Psychology -- is among the first explorations of the social psychological processes underlying anti-atheist sentiments.