Guest Opinion: Good Lord! Time for an agnostic president?by Stephen S. Cullen on Dec. 27, 2007, under Opinion
The presidential candidates are tossing around a lot of religion, or should I say Christianity, particularly Mike Huckabee and Mitt Romney.
I don’t know Huckabee’s thoughts and beliefs on the role of religion in politics, but I don’t need to know because he is a Baptist minister who proclaims to be a Christian leader. Enough said for me.
As for Romney, in his supposedly JFKish speech about politics and religion and his Mormon faith, I am alarmed by his pronouncement that “Freedom requires religion.” Whoa, doggies.
That doesn’t mean that as president he would establish a theocracy, does it?
The time has come to consider an agnostic for president.
Where is the candidate who can charge into the political arena and forcefully proclaim that agnosticism embodies the real truth, when a candidate has to say “I don’t know”?
Alas, nowhere in sight. If that candidate does show up, I suggest this speech:
My fellow Americans,
At some risk, I must inform you of my religious beliefs, because rightly or wrongly, a candidate’s faith has become a significant factor in your decision on whom to support.
I am an agnostic. I cannot believe in a Christian god, a deity personified as a kingly, old man, and so I cannot believe that Jesus Christ was the son of God.
I cannot believe in any organized or unorganized religion that maintains it has “the answer.”
Over the thousands of years of human history, no indisputable, empirical evidence has ever been found to prove or disprove the existence of God or that Jesus was the son of God.
So if you ask me if God exists, I don’t know. If you ask me if Jesus was the son of God, I don’t know.
I don’t know whether God made man in his image. That’s implausible for me but makes sense for Christianity.
I also cannot believe the Bible is the word of God.
In my opinion, man wrote the Bible as a much-needed authoritative source.
How else can human beings make meaning out of their existence but to have faith in a benevolent god and glorious, everlasting afterlife?
I am just unable, with all my being, to make that “leap of faith.”
I have often heard that Christianity “is the only true faith.”
Does that mean the Christian faith makes more sense than others? Or do Christians really mean their God and his son have been proved to exist, so only Christianity is true?
If this were so, I would be a Christian and so would all human beings.
I speak primarily of Christianity, for it is the dominant faith in our country.
But we are not a “Christian nation.” We are a nation of mostly Christians.
The former denotes theocracy, the latter recognizes the religion of prevalence.
What I say of Christianity applies to all religions. None has proof of a god, and any religion that purports to do so is presumptuous and arrogant.
Should I become president, I will base my policies and decisions on reason, logic and truth, on what is right and wrong and just, no matter where these concepts emanated or originated.
I will not base them on a consultation with a higher authority, but I will base them on reality and with the counsel of highly qualified, experienced, competent and reasonable persons of all faiths and political persuasions.
After all, my fellow Americans, we are all in this together, whether you believe in a god or not.
Tucsonan Steven S. Cullen is a certified legal assistant and received the Bronze Star for his U.S. Army service in the Vietnam War.