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What's wrong with having a little faith?

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What’s wrong with having a little faith?
Posted November 4, 2005

Stephanie Duarte
Web Editor

It wasn’t long after Bush announced Harriet Miers nomination that trouble and controversy arose over this woman as an ultra-conservative, evangelical Christian. At first, the media’s focus on this issue was her “level of Christianity,” as some media sources were calling it. Apparently, one’s faith dramatically alters one’s ability to understand and uphold the constitution. Since then, her religious conversion from Catholicism to evangelical Christianity has faded into the background. Evidently, her intelligence level and knowledge of the law was so inadequate that both Republicans and Democrats denied support. Wow. Two parties on one side. Take a picture.

This should cause a huge sigh of relief for us all because it shows that America (at least for a moment) is looking beyond the surface-media issues and actually focusing on more important factors when making important decisions.

Despite the bigger factors at hand, I can’t help but dwell on the issues that hold less prominence, but still much importance with the story. Why is having faith in God or a higher being so taboo?

Yes, religion is largely criticized for dividing populations, initiating fights between countries, propelling hate crimes, etc. It’s an easy target because most people hold religion and religious people up to the highest standard of perfection.

Religious people are often expected to be perfect or holy. However, this doesn’t mean that these people don’t deal with life’s frustrations, defeats and realities. No one is perfect, and people make good and bad decisions every day.

Judging religion by the actions of merely one person makes religion an easy target for finding flaws. It is unfair to judge an entire group of people or an entire faith on the actions of one person.

I’m not advocating any particular religion, and I’m certainly not a fan of flaunting the faith. I’m uncomfortable with people standing on street corners, shouting to the traffic to accept Jesus or anyone else as their savior.

On the flip side, I am a fan of living the faith and using faith and spirituality as a guide to living as a genuine, respectful person. Yes, life is involved, but there’s no harm in some positive guidance.

College is the time to develop on an intellectual level a point of view and an opinion. Why not hold religion to the same intellectualism? At this point in our lives, religion and faith shouldn’t be something to be followed blindly. It should be questioned with an open mind. If we can’t approach this subject or any subject with an open mind, we can’t ever expect to achieve an intellectual understanding of this subject. The same concept can be applied to learning from other people. If we are stuck in one point of view, we can’t ever hear or learn from the next person.

It takes a little extra effort to develop in this way. It requires a person to ask difficult questions, evaluate character and be open to change and growth.

Well there is value in taking risks, and isn’t college supposed to be the time to take risks and explore identity?

What’s wrong with having a little faith in something higher? We don’t ever question the value of having positive role models. There’s no harm in healthy guidance and support from a community. Now is the time to learn from each other. Maybe a little humility is something everyone could use.

Stephanie Duarte, a senior communications major, is web editor of the Campus Times. She can be reached by e-mail at duartes@ulv.edu.