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Star Wars Prequels Stats Idle

Czech Nationwide Census Shows Jump In Jedi Knights 321

Posted by samzenpus
from the the-force-is-strong-in-these-ones dept.
First time accepted submitter il_genio writes "The Czech Statistical Office (SÚ) unveiled the first results of its regular 10-year census on Thursday. While almost half the population, 4.8 million, shied away from answering the voluntary religious question, a surprising strong showing was given by those Czechs who described themselves as Knights of the Jedi and believers in 'the Force' as depicted in the Star Wars films. Overall, 15,070 Czechs identified themselves as Knights of the Jedi with the biggest proportion of adherents in the capital, Prague, with 3,977 followers or 0.31 percent of the population."
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Czech Nationwide Census Shows Jump In Jedi Knights

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday December 16, 2011 @12:08AM (#38393754)

    then that would make George Lucas THE Prophet in said religion.

    "Special effects are just a tool, a means of telling a story. People have a tendency to confuse them as an end to themselves. A Special effect without a story is a pretty boring thing."

  • by lkcl (517947) <lkcl@lkcl.net> on Friday December 16, 2011 @12:09AM (#38393764) Homepage

    i read somewhere that the number of people in the UK who declared themselves as Jedi Knights exceeds the number of people who declared themselves to be Sikhs. however, for some reason, Jediism - http://churchofjediism.org/ [churchofjediism.org] - isn't recognised as a religion in the UK.

    • by Anonymous Coward on Friday December 16, 2011 @12:14AM (#38393790)

      Have you ever pissed off a Sikh? Have you ever pissed off a nerd calling themselves a Jedi?

      Yeah, it's the same reason Scientology is counted as a religion, but not say the flying spaghetti monster.

      • by rhook (943951) on Friday December 16, 2011 @01:15AM (#38394148)

        Have you ever pissed off a Sikh?

        Well they do carry a sword, not unlike Jedi's and their lightsabers.

        • by 93 Escort Wagon (326346) on Friday December 16, 2011 @03:36AM (#38394782)

          Have you ever pissed off a Sikh?

          Well they do carry a sword, not unlike Jedi's and their lightsabers.

          Except a Sikh's sword can kill you for real.

          • by ewanm89 (1052822)
            so could a light saber if they were possible to build, it's blade is supposedly an arc of plasma.
            • That's a pretty big "if" right there. Of course, a jedi could kill you in a hundred different ways "if" they actually were able to control the force.
              • by ewanm89 (1052822)
                Well, half the problem is power supply, we can make the ionized plasma blade, but we need one hell of a set of rather large magnets for containment and a several thousand watt power supply to power it. And there comes an issue that the whole device is then about the size of a large room.
        • by KiloByte (825081)

          Not in the UK, the most they're allowed to is a tiny toy knife with dull edges which merely resembles a kirpan. In some cases the most that's allowed is a brooch or a pendant with a depiction of the kirpan.

          Still better than Denmark, which disallows carrying a knife in public places at all.

          • Not in the UK, the most they're allowed to is a tiny toy knife with dull edges which merely resembles a kirpan. In some cases the most that's allowed is a brooch or a pendant with a depiction of the kirpan.

            Technically, this may be the case, but I'd imagine that the authorities are pragmatic and tolerant about this. Compare with the sgian dubh [wikipedia.org], another type of ceremonial dagger worn in the UK for cultural reasons (well, on special occasions anyway), and worn less discreetly than a kirpan would typically be worn.

            The common type of sgian dubh is large enough and sharp enough to do some serious damage. I was told by a kilt-salesman that the blade of a sgian dubh is long enough for it to be classed as an offensive

            • by KiloByte (825081)

              large enough and sharp enough to do some serious damage

              That's the whole point in a weapon. Sikhs are supposed to use kirpans in defense and for public good, something you can't do with a toy knife.

              At the time, a sword was a good weapon, but sadly the gurus didn't include an upgrade clause. I think a Sikh that carries a gun instead of the kirpan would fulfill the intended meaning better.

      • by mjwx (966435)

        Have you ever pissed off a Sikh?

        We are not liking your attitude very much sir, we request that you are changing it sir.

      • Have you ever pissed off a nerd calling themselves a Jedi?

        Fear them [youtube.com]

      • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

        by Anonymous Coward

        All hail to the Flying Spaghetti Monster!

    • by lkcl (517947) <lkcl@lkcl.net> on Friday December 16, 2011 @12:17AM (#38393804) Homepage

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jedi_census_phenomenon#United_Kingdom [wikipedia.org]
      teehee. 4th largest reported religion in England and Wales.

    • by Baloroth (2370816) on Friday December 16, 2011 @12:19AM (#38393824)

      Since most of the people who "identify" as Jedi Knights probably don't recognize it as a real religion either, I would say this is perfectly justified.

    • by icebike (68054) * on Friday December 16, 2011 @12:25AM (#38393852)

      Sounds like something twitter or facebook triggered. All it would take is one tweet to get this sort of thing started when census was underway.

      That 15000 people thought of the same answer (I'm guessing it wasn't a check box on the form), it would have to have been croud-sourced at some level, and any random high school kid could have started it.

    • by Alarash (746254)

      i read somewhere that the number of people in the UK who declared themselves as Jedi Knights exceeds the number of people who declared themselves to be Sikhs What about the number of Siths?

    • by rtb61 (674572)

      I believe you have confused the number of people who claim adherence to the principles of the Jedi with the number of people who claim to be "Jedi Knights". As for being recognised as a religion, I always thought that was pretty much down to the adherents and not a spoof website.

      I still fail to understand why so many people, like yourself are so threatened by the harmless beliefs of others or to give you the benefit of the doubt perhaps you just failed to pay attention, rather than narcissistic self prom

  • by lkcl (517947) <lkcl@lkcl.net> on Friday December 16, 2011 @12:13AM (#38393782) Homepage

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jediism#Reaction [wikipedia.org] - wonderful. a jedi knight gets thrown out of a job centre for not removing his hoodie. and a new law in 2010 *excludes* members of the Church of Jediism in the UK from protection against racial discrimination and hatred. wonderful.

    • by Anonymous Coward on Friday December 16, 2011 @12:17AM (#38393800)

      We've known the UK was run by the Sith for quite a while. This is news to you?

      • by lkcl (517947)

        ahh, and i thought that it was because blair managed to get himself possessed by rakshasas because his wife was arseing about with ouija boards. that it was sith all along explains everything.

      • by mjwx (966435) on Friday December 16, 2011 @02:53AM (#38394624)

        We've known the UK was run by the Sith for quite a while. This is news to you?

        Darth Cameron: When I left Labor I was but a learner, now I am the master.
        Darth Brown: Only a master of evil Darth.
        Darth Cameron: Well so are you.
        Darth Clegg: Sigh, will you two just get on with it so I can ally with and inevitably betray one of you.

    • by Alphadecay27 (1277022) on Friday December 16, 2011 @12:26AM (#38393864)
      The sad thing is that the law DOES protect Scientology... which is an even more nonsensical made-up religion.
      • They're all made up. Now, how nonsensical they are is another question. And I would agree that Scientology is even more nonsensical than jediism. :-)

    • by Rhodri Mawr (862554) on Friday December 16, 2011 @12:31AM (#38393900)
      That's because the law can comprehend the difference between faiths and fanboyism and making a joke on a mandatory census. This is where the law is sensible.
      However, where the legislation fails is when it does not protect people against discrimination based on their place of birth or language, should that be within the UK. For example, were you to discriminate against someone based on the fact that they were English, Welsh or Scottish, or even Cornish, Northern or from Norfolk, Kernow or Cymraeg speaking or any one of many other ways that people are "different" then you would be quite entitled to do so. e.g. Anne Robinson's comments. http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/entertainment/tv_and_radio/1279679.stm [bbc.co.uk]
      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by houghi (78078)

        That's because the law can comprehend the difference between faiths and fanboyism

        That is your problem right there, because there is no difference.

      • by zevans (101778)

        For example, were you to discriminate against someone based on the fact that they were English, Welsh or Scottish, or even Cornish, Northern or from Norfolk, Kernow or Cymraeg speaking or any one of many other ways that people are "different" then you would be quite entitled to do so.

        Yeah, but she's ginger. Gotta have SOMEONE to look down on.

        (I've also just learned that "The Act also makes it unlawful to ask a job applicant questions about health or disability before making a job offer unless it is to make reasonable adjustments for interview." I'm now trying to think of a business I've worked with that HASN'T broken that law.)

  • by silvermorph (943906) on Friday December 16, 2011 @12:25AM (#38393854)
    50% of the population didn't want to report their religion because they are secretly Sith.
  • by The_Myth (84113) on Friday December 16, 2011 @12:38AM (#38393930)

    If they can call themselves Jedi Knights shouldn't the be able to like Force Pull there car out of their parking space and over their heads to another parking space?

    I would be more inclined to take them seriously if they called themselves Force Adepts or Force Sensitive rather than Knights.

    • by M. Baranczak (726671) on Friday December 16, 2011 @01:49AM (#38394326)

      You would? Really? Force Sensitive sounds like a marketing slogan for a condom. That was badly translated from Chinese.

      • by mjwx (966435)

        You would? Really? Force Sensitive sounds like a marketing slogan for a condom. That was badly translated from Chinese.

        More like a brand of razor thought up by an imagination-less western marketing department.

        Introducing the new 16 blade Force Sensitive.

    • by navyjeff (900138)
      If they can call themselves a Christian, shouldn't they be able to move mountains, walk on water, and drink poison without suffering harm?
      • You do know that "walking on the water" is a misstranslation and the idiom in fact means walking at the beach?

        • by tehcyder (746570)

          You do know that "walking on the water" is a misstranslation and the idiom in fact means walking at the beach?

          Yeah, and the five loaves and two fish wee actually five tons of loaves and two tons of fish. And the "water into wine" was actually "crushed grapes and some water into wine after a few months". And Lazarus was just sleeping, not dead.

      • Comitting to the belief that the son of God once walked upon our earth is slightly different from assuming a title that suggests you yourself is an adept in using the force.
  • For the longest time, I admired Brazil, among other countries, for forcing people to vote.

    Because one of the reasons sometimes the suckiest politicians get elected is because people don't vote. Remember how close the 2000 election was between Gore and Bush? Did you vote?! We would not have invaded Iraq in 2003 if something like 0.002% of useless turds actually got off their asses in 2000 and spent 15 minutes at a polling station instead of at a video game console. No: the Democrats are not the same as the Republicans. Gore would not have invaded Iraq. That's why your vote COUNTS. (Now we will hear some assholes argue why Gore would have invaded Iraq, rather than concede the simple and obvious point that your vote matters.)

    You get the government you deserve, and if you don't vote, then your government shows as much interest in you as you do in it when it comes time to actually PARTICIPATE in the formation of your own fucking government. People died so that your leader is chosen by you. People are dying today to get that right in other countries. And some people could care less. Some pathetic losers would rather play video games.

    But then I realized, when this Jedi story was discussed awhile back, from an Australian census I believe, that some people just don't take life seriously. And you can't force them to.

    That, if forced to vote, you'd see Bullwinkle and Kodos and Senator Palpatine winning thousands of votes.

    You can't force people to care.

    So, while I still admire Brazil and other countries for forcing people to acknowledge they should participate in their democracy, because it is such a gift, I don't push the issue anymore. Now, all I do is, when I hear someone complain about politics, I ask them "did you vote?" And if they go "no," I simply walk away and that person is simply dead to me forever more and I have zero respect for them. For being such a complacent hypocritical empty tool.

    There are some things in life which are actually important and not funny. YOur religion? Jedi? OK, that's funny. But voting? Vote, damnit, it's not a joke. Thousands may die because you couldn't be bothered and some sycophant of the oil industry got in a position to fulfill Neocon masturbatory fantasies, nevermind your own country's domestic ruling agenda.

    • by wdsci (1204512) on Friday December 16, 2011 @12:56AM (#38394028) Homepage
      Some of us don't vote because we consider it politically irresponsible to make a choice that we don't believe in. If I dislike (or like) all candidates in an election equally, not voting is a (even the) proper choice. The point: before you brush people off for "not participating" in government, make sure they really are being lazy rather than consciously abstaining.
      • every choice you ever make in your entire life, on every single topic, from the most personal, to the most small, to the most cosmic, to the most mundane, to the most crucial, is a compromise

        you will, forever more, in your entire life, and as long as human beings with free will exist in democratic societies, only get a choice of candidates that only approximates your values, anyone's values. you get a choice: vaguely grey area candidate this, or vaguely grey area candidate that. no better than that. welcome to reality

        that you don't get to vote exactly for your ideal hero as your candidate, who matches your values 100%, therefore, you're not going to vote: that only tells me you are a fool

        what you just said earns you, from me, instantaneous disrespect and disgust

        because, in essence, what you are saying is that you are too good for us. you will not sully your "principles" to submit to an ugly process that might mean you have to recognize that life has compromises. no: fuck you, you are cluelessly idealistic. there's nothing wrong with being an idealist. but there's something wrong with being so idealistic that recognizing basic facts of political reality is an insult to your cognition

        you don't have principles. you have high minded impossible standards that life will never live up to. and rather than live with the basic truth of the ugliness of the world, such as it is, and help to make it better by participating in it, you'd rather hide in your ivory tower and pretend you know better than us. no, you know less than us, because you believe your abstention makes you superior. it makes you inferior, for failing to recognize that your participation is the only way any of your ideals get realized. you tweak your ego at the expense of actually mattering to the world. you are a narcissist, preserving the ego at the expense of participating in your society, there is nothing "conscientious" about your behavior, that's just how you rationalize your complacency to yourself (since it is flattering to your ego, you narcissist)

        • by gyepi (891047)
          Speaking of idealists, really it's people like you who claim that "every vote matters" who are the idealists. In fact you are not just an idealist, but outright wrong in this. You are also wrong in claiming that by voting people should make compromises; no, they shouldn't.

          In reality the vote of any single person is worth zero. The chance that your vote makes a difference - that without your vote the result would be a tie - is so small as to be negligible, and even if it were the case that your vote was t
      • by artor3 (1344997) on Friday December 16, 2011 @01:13AM (#38394132)

        Consciously abstaining is the stupidest fucking thing imaginable. Vote for a third party, if you must, but better yet, vote for the less bad candidate. And vote in primaries, so you get better choices. People DIED because of Bush being elected. Thousands of Americans and hundreds of thousands worldwide. Trillions of dollars were wasted. It was a complete, unmitigated disaster, and it was one that was obviously coming. That was several years ago... and the Republicans got your message loud and clear. They learned their lesson: that if they make things awful enough, you'll just give up and let them take whatever they want. Great job!

        • mod parent up

          if you don't participate in your democratic society, you are helping the side you like least win

          those with ideology you dislike depend upon you to not participate. they understand how you think, and all they have to do is act ugly enough, and you just cede to them power

          so there's nothing principled or conscientious about you abstaining. it's just stupid and self-defeating

          show that you care enough to try to matter. that's more important than a "conscience" that thinks standing around idly while evil happens is any sort of conscience

        • by mjwx (966435) on Friday December 16, 2011 @02:53AM (#38394626)

          Consciously abstaining is the stupidest fucking thing imaginable. Vote for a third party, if you must, but better yet, vote for the less bad candidate. And vote in primaries, so you get better choices. People DIED because of Bush being elected. Thousands of Americans and hundreds of thousands worldwide. Trillions of dollars were wasted. It was a complete, unmitigated disaster, and it was one that was obviously coming. That was several years ago... and the Republicans got your message loud and clear. They learned their lesson: that if they make things awful enough, you'll just give up and let them take whatever they want. Great job!

          LOL.

          In case you haven't heard all the Obama hate, apparently he hasn't made anything better. Or so I'm told by angry Americans.

          I'm Australian, not American so I'd bet the truth is infinitely stranger.

          I'm Australian as I said and we have compulsory voting. I'm looking at an A$120 fine for just not turning up. It's the most retarded electoral idea ever, as the OP said in this thread, you cant force people to care. You can only force them to do "something", chances are it wont be something good. A lot of Australians just tick boxes at random or worse yet in order (ballot order is randomly drawn) but you dont want someone like One Nation or the BNP getting the apathy vote. People who vote properly but dont care who they vote for are worse then people who Donkey [wikipedia.org].

          Bush could have won by a much larger majority in both elections due entirely by apathy voters. More people voting != more people caring.

        • by Tom (822) on Friday December 16, 2011 @06:23AM (#38395492) Homepage Journal

          Consciously abstaining is the stupidest fucking thing imaginable. Vote for a third party, if you must, but better yet, vote for the less bad candidate.

          I've spoken out against this for as long as I could vote, and no one has convinced me otherwise in 20 years (though I now vote - for the Pirate Party).

          If you find a party or a candidate that suits you - fine. But if you don't, then voting for the least evil is not appropriate. It sends all kinds of wrong messages. Not only does it give the party you vote for a false sense of representation, it also tells everyone that the system is fine as it is, when it really isn't (because there is nobody in it who represents you).

          My vote is all I have in a representative democracy. I will give it only to someone who I want to be represented by. I'm not falling for these attempts to give me a bad feeling about withholding my vote when there is nobody I trust with it. In fact, I would wish there was a "none of the above" option on the ballot, I would have used it for almost 20 years. As there isn't, abstaining is the only option I have to express myself in an election.

          I am not responsible for bad people coming to power - the people who voted them in are, and nobody else.

      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by 1u3hr (530656)

        If I dislike (or like) all candidates in an election equally,

        If you can say that, you haven't even bothered to look at the candidates. Even choosing the least worst is better than abstaining and letting the worst win by default. It's self-righteous "they're all scum" people who allow the "scum" to win time after time.

      • by Morty (32057)

        If I dislike (or like) all candidates in an election equally, not voting is a (even the) proper choice.

        Most elections have a bunch of offices and decisions, each with a bunch of candidates/options. How is it possible that you are consistently seeing equivalence between the various sets of candidates and options? I could understand if, in some small fraction of individual line items, your research turned up that the options were equally bad. But how can you not be voting at all?

        Far more likely: you aren't doing adequate research. The options seem equivalent to you because, with minimal information about t

      • Can't you cast a blank vote? In Spain there is the option to cast a vote without marking any candidate/party. These votes are effectively counted when it comes to the distribution of seats(*), and give a clear meaning of "I want to vote but I find nothing worth voting" (instead of "I don't think voting is important enough to go to the poll station").

        (*) The distribution of seats is done taking into account the number of votes cast, so blank votes affect results (abstention does not). There is even a politic

    • by PopeRatzo (965947) * on Friday December 16, 2011 @01:08AM (#38394092) Homepage Journal

      some people just don't take life seriously

      There's a word for people like that.

      "Happy".

    • by LordLucless (582312) on Friday December 16, 2011 @01:10AM (#38394108)

      That, if forced to vote, you'd see Bullwinkle and Kodos and Senator Palpatine winning thousands of votes.

      As an Australian who has worked at polling booths counting votes, I can say that the number of informal ballots (that is, ballots that don't indicate a valid choice, such as your examples above, or people who just shove the form in the box without voting at all) is a small minority. Even then, it is useful - the most recent federal election had a record number of informal votes, indicative of a populace who was deeply apathetic about both primary party candidates. The apathy was borne out by other evidence as well - we ended up with a minority government for the first time in my lifetime, due to the extreme swing away from both primary parties.

      As to your statement about Gore and Bush, if Bush had stated his intentions of invading Iraq when he was elected, he probably wouldn't have been. That's the primary problem with our elected politicians - once elected, none of their voters have any guarantee of what they will do, and they aren't held to any promises they said they would. We're essentially voting them into a position of supreme authority blind.

      • by am 2k (217885)

        Even then, it is useful - the most recent federal election had a record number of informal votes, indicative of a populace who was deeply apathetic about both primary party candidates.

        So, did that change anything in the way the politicians behave? I don't think so, since those votes don't have any negative impact on them.

        • by HJED (1304957)
          Not directly but it contributed to the massive swing away from both parties resulting in a minority government, likewise people voting for minority parties made a difference and the greens now hold the balance of power in the senate whilst the independents hold it in the house of reps. So yes I would say it did.
      • by rhook (943951)

        As to your statement about Gore and Bush, if Bush had stated his intentions of invading Iraq when he was elected

        The US Congress declared war on Iraq, not Bush. The President of the United States does not have the power nor the authority to declare a war, which is why Obama broke the law when he had our military bomb Libya without cause, provocation or a declaration of war.

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by Shetan (20885)

          The US Congress declared war on Iraq, not Bush. The President of the United States does not have the power nor the authority to declare a war, which is why Obama broke the law when he had our military bomb Libya without cause, provocation or a declaration of war.

          Congress hasn't declared war on anyone since World War II. Congress did authorize the use of military force in Iraq in 2002 based on what Bush thought to be appropriate.

      • by mjwx (966435)

        As an Australian who has worked at polling booths counting votes, I can say that the number of informal ballots (that is, ballots that don't indicate a valid choice, such as your examples above, or people who just shove the form in the box without voting at all) is a small minority. Even then, it is useful - the most recent federal election had a record number of informal votes, indicative of a populace who was deeply apathetic about both primary party candidates. The apathy was borne out by other evidence as well - we ended up with a minority government for the first time in my lifetime, due to the extreme swing away from both primary parties.

        I think that apathy was expressed largely by the number of votes that went to third parties. Labor won government but they depend on the Greens and the Independents (speaking personally, I dont see an issue here as I dont trust Labor or the Coalition to do things in the best interest of Australians) even a lot of the Coalition votes came in via the Nationals.

    • Do you ever read Doonsbury?

      It's author, Berke Breathed, was a student at the U of Texas back in the early 1980s. He had a cartoon called Academia Waltz in the school paper.
      In it, there was a character named "Hank the Hallucination."

      Well. Hank was handily elected president of the student body without even running for it.

      At least it proved to me that the votes were legitimate and not part of a conspiracy by the elites...

    • Now, all I do is, when I hear someone complain about politics, I ask them "did you vote?" And if they go "no," I simply walk away and that person is simply dead to me forever more and I have zero respect for them.

      that might be a bit of an overreaction, don't you think?

    • I don't vote because I don't have a voting district or state and therefore I am added to the "just in case" tally which is for expats.... it has never been and never will be counted.

      I do however talk about politics and try to influence the votes of others. I don't tell them who to vote for, I ask them to justify their choice and will educate them either way.

      Gore you might say wouldn't have gone to war with Iraq. Some would also say that the Taliban almost certainly wouldn't have targeted the U.S. during a G
  • Not a great idea (Score:5, Insightful)

    by liamoshan (1283930) on Friday December 16, 2011 @01:18AM (#38394168)

    Every time there's a census in Australia, putting "Jedi" as your religion is suggested as a fun way to mess with the system

    I must admit that at first thought, this seemed like a cool idea to me, but I remember reading an analysis pointing out that it isn't such a great idea. If you're not religious, the best answer you can put is "Not religious" (atheist, agnostic, naturalist etc are filed under this by the census system)

    Every non-religious person who puts "Jedi" as their religion is one extra statistic who is counted as being a religious when attempting to justify policies like compulsory religious instruction in government schools [theage.com.au]

    • by ceoyoyo (59147) on Friday December 16, 2011 @01:40AM (#38394274)

      I don't see the problem. Religion should be a subject you learn about in school. So much the better if Jediism and FSMism are big enough to be included.

      The problem with what you linked to is just one phrase: "primarily Christian."

      (religion, ie Christianity, was an optional hour a week for a month subject when I was in elementary school. I had great fun asking the priest interesting questions. He had less fun trying to answer them. )

      • by c0lo (1497653)

        I don't see the problem. Religion should be a subject you learn about in school. So much the better if Jediism and FSMism are big enough to be included.

        FSMism? Is there a church of the Finite State Machine?

        Because the "believers" in the Flying Spaghetti Monster (blessed his noodliness) are pastafarians - or, if at a high enough degree of sainthood is attained, pirates.

  • Read about it. czech, bohemian geographies have always been geographies of forward thinking and revolution.

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