By Aaron Earls
There’s a growing distrust between urban and rural Americans, and it might be because of the television shows we watch.
Analysis by Brookings found TV shows are heavily skewed geographically toward specific regions of the country and particularly toward urban centers like New York and Los Angeles.
While just under 30 percent of shows in the 1950s were set in cities, that has doubled to more than 60 percent in the 2010s.
While the South has 33 percent of the U.S. population, the highest of any region, only 15 percent of the shows examined by Brookings took place there—the lowest of any region.
Brookings suggested the underrepresentation could lead to continued polarization with little understanding of small-town life by urbanites and resentment among rural Americans toward Hollywood and city dwellers.
Why this matters to the church: Bias against regions or misunderstandings between areas could hamper churches working together. Congregants may have to work through unspoken issues before they can partner with other churches.
As a leader, help your church see God at work in diverse areas across the country and around the world.
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AARON EARLS (@WardrobeDoor) is online editor of Facts & Trends.