You and your friends are at a restaurant, the waitress asks you what you want to order. You’re not sure what you want, so you ask the waitress if she can ask your friends and come back. As your friends order their meals, it hits you. You see the biggest, juiciest burger you’ve ever laid your eyes upon. You tell the waitress you’d like to order the quarter pounder with bacon and cheese, before she can even write down your order, a woman a table away says, “You can’t have that because I’m a vegetarian.”
This is the way some religious people think. They think they can use their religious beliefs to dictate other people’s lives. People shouldn’t dictate the lives of others using religion.
One example would be when a right-wing politician bans abortions because of their bible-based beliefs. An Arizona school board decided to remove pages from a biology textbook because of complaint from the Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF) group that said the book didn’t show an “affirmative preference to childbirth and adoption as option to abortion.”
The state department of education and school board lawyers said the pages didn’t break any laws, they were removed anyway.
Abortion isn’t the only thing under attack in the classroom though, it is well known that many Christians don’t believe in evolution.
Some argue that evolution shouldn’t be taught in schools because evolution isn’t observable, but that is not true.
Evolution has been seen by looking at transitional fossils, it has also been observed in fruit flies, mice, and tilapia among other things. If schools aren’t to teach the unobservable then that would mean creationism wouldn’t be able to be taught because no one was able to observe God create everything.
Despite this, some are still pushing their beliefs on others and try to indoctrinate students. This is a problem because rather than students knowing the truth, they could leave high school believing the Earth is 6 thousand years old, or that dinosaur fossils are sketchy or a test of faith from God as reported by the Institute for Creation Research.
Children could grow up ignorant to how the world works because evolution is in conflict with the story of Creation.
Marriage equality will also be hard to attain because of the beliefs of others. Christian fundamentalists feel that homosexual couples shouldn’t be able to marry each other because the bible calls homosexuality an “abomination” (Leviticus 18:22) and “contrary to nature” (Romans 1:26-27).
This is a very closed-minded stance to take because these anti-gay Christians deny the equal treatment of others on an issue that doesn’t affect them in any way.
Allowing gay people to marry each other doesn’t make Christians any less Christian, but some would still rather suppress the equal treatment of the gay community.
Although it may seem like I think religion is solely a force of evil, I don’t. Religion has helped people improve themselves and has gotten people through tough times, but it can also have negative effects. I want religion to make people better, what I don’t want are harsh interpretations of holy books and extremism that leads to suppression of ideas and oppression of demographic groups who don’t hold similar beliefs. Religion has great power and influence in the world, if that power was used responsibly we could make the world a better place to live.