A test of faith

Religion is not needed in 21st century society.

Ronald Dixon


As a young boy growing up in Hibbing, and Blaine, Minn., I had several experiences with the seemingly default religion of Christianity in my family. Although my parents were not very religious, I assumed that Christianity was the correct religion due to my parents’ beliefs.

By the time that I entered high school, however, that drastically changed.

As a teenager, I began to grow skeptical of the religion that is omnipresent in contemporary American society. The supernatural claims that were found in ancient texts lacked the evidence that I sought. Finally, through research, dialogue with friends on both sides of the religious spectrum and maturing, I deduced that I lacked the faith in an ever-present, supernatural being.

That is the definition of atheism, which may include agnostics, secularists and other skeptics. Specifically, according to Professor Richard Dawkin’s Scale of Theistic Probability, I am a “de-facto atheist,” an individual who doesn’t know for sure if there is a god but realizes that there is no evidence for any, and thus, lives life as if a god does not exist.

Of course, I have been criticized for my belief. Anything that I say against Christianity or Islam seems to be matched with claims of intolerance. What I can safely say, however, is that beliefs that have been used to justify misogyny, racism, slavery, homophobia and cruelty should not be  part of any human moral systems.

Others claim that religion is a force of good, but religion is not needed to be a good person. I have heard the claims that I lack a “basis” for my morality because I do not have a god, but there is a natural sense of right and wrong that exists within most people.

In a 21st century society, religion is not needed. Children should not be indoctrinated to believe in a religion. We can function without a god commanding us, and as a member of a relatively secular college campus, I welcome the further advancements of society.