No religion no problem


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The version of this article released on December 13 was the incorrect and unedited one.

Walking down the halls of Skyline College, it may seem like someone could be on the OC. I’m a young, European looking, and middle to upper class socialite. However, I’m actually part of a very small minority in America. I don’t believe in a god of any sort. I’m missing a crucial part of what it is to be American, I’m not a Christian.Atheists as defined by are people who deny or disbelieve in the existence of a supreme being. Atheists are a very small portion of this country and less than one million atheists live in this country compared with the almost 160 million adult Americans who identified themselves as Christians in the 2001 American Religious Identity Survey. This is not to say that to be an “American” one has to be Christian, but the media has given us it’s version of what the average American looks like, and how and what they worship. Anyone can look at the Constitution and try to prove me wrong with the first Amendment, which guarantees freedom of religion, however, everyday in school I was encouraged to say the words “Under god” in the school pledge. Also our money reads “In god we trust”, and all of our presidents have been Christians with only one of those was a Catholic, quite controversial at the time.Religion is important to politics because supposedly religion denotes morality. As a matter of fact a lot of people question how a person who is raised without religion can be moral. As a retort to that I’d like to say, what makes religious people moral? Ken Lay, of Enron fame, who screwed thousands of share holders out of their money and retirement fund, was a devout Christian.One person, who is always brought up during discussions of Atheism, is Stalin, the psychotic Russian dictator who killed 30 million people. Lord Action once said that, “Power corrupts; absolute power corrupts absolutely.” If a person already has psychopathic tendencies, then the belief that they can get away with anything will increase those tendencies.Just the odds of an atheist committing a crime in this country are low due to the low population percentage of atheist. Since the vast majority of the population in this country identifies with Christianity why should religion prevent or inhibit crime? Religion tries to prevent crime by giving either rewards or punishments in an afterlife. In the best case scenario people will hopefully do the right thing because they know it is the right thing, and religion hopes that people will do the right thing because of possible rewards or punishments in an afterlife. Atheists get their morals from their families and societies. Many wonder how atheists get their beliefs about god. Atheists generally come from two different places. A person can become disaffected with their church, and thus stop believing in their religion, and thus god. Or a child can be raised without religion, which is how I was personally brought up. If a child is brought up religiously from an early age, there is a high likely hood that they will continue to follow that religion throughout their lives.The question everyone asks of atheists is to argue against the existence of god. From my personal experience I have never managed to convince anyone of the inexistence of god, and rather obviously no one has managed to convince me of the existence of god. Nobody’s personal religious convictions, which have been pounded into their brains from an early age, are going to be changed by a debate, no matter how vigorous. Another problem is that people become angry. Questioning someone’s beliefs will obviously piss them off.That’s part of the problem and the debate about the existence of god is way too far circular to be logically argued. People have asked me, “What came before the big bang?” and in response I have asked “what came before god?” There is no completely satisfactory answer to either of those questions, and they can stretch on to infinity. Atheism is easier to believe in California, especially in the Bay Area, because of the lack of pressure, but in the rest of the United States it can sometimes have you kicked out of town. A ton of arguments for and against atheism can be found on To really understand what it’s like to be an atheist outside of the Bay Area I recommend “The Price of Atheism” made by ABC’s 20/20. It’s a pretty horrible thing to happen to a girl in my age group and the thing that perpetuates it, is ignorance.Being an atheist is a lot like being black, female, or gay. All of these groups are downtrodden to some extent, and sure atheists could choose to believe, but blacks can choose to act white, women can accept their situation, and gays can pretend to like women. If I believed in god at this point in my life it would be exactly like I was lying to myself, and to all of you. So to all of the atheists out there; don’t be ashamed of your religion, be proud of your preferences, and don’t let anyone give you hell for it.