Here’s a surprise for a summer Friday. Christianity Today posts about a new list, published by the real-estate blog, Movoto, of the “saintliest” cities in the United States. Can you guess number one? Bet you can’t. It’s Babylon on the Hudson–and my home town–New York City!
However did the nice people at Movoto come up with this? Christianity Today explains:
Movoto says it reached its conclusions by reversing the data it collected to compile its “sinful cities” list, which it released last month. It based those calculations for the country’s 95 most populous cities on data selected to represent each of the seven deadly sins, including:
Strip clubs per capita (Lust) Cosmetic surgeons per capita (Pride) Violent crime per year per 1,000 residents (Wrath) Theft per year per 1,000 residents (Envy) Percentage of disposable income given to charity each year (Greed) Percentage of obese residents (Gluttony) Percentage of physically inactive residents (Sloth)
Whichever cities ranked highest in those categories were determined to be “sinful.” To determine which cities were most saintly, however, Movoto looked “at the same criteria (the sins) from the opposite perspective…. This time around the cities with the least amount of these things would rank highest and thus be the most saintly.
The most saintly city, according to these criteria, is good old Gotham. I’m sure Evangelical readers will be offended by the obvious works-righteousness of this reasoning, but, really, it makes a lot of sense, when you think about it. It’s like the old parenting advice: busy kids stay out of trouble. We New Yorkers are far too busy pursuing money and career advancement to fall into temptations. Greed and pride, for example.