Existence of God debated by students

Lucy Hough

On Wednesday, Nov. 4, students came together to debate the existence of God. Hosted by the Progressive Student Roundtable, three students representing atheism and three representing theology answered questions on the philosophy of God but also social questions about the role God plays in morality and how that should affect public policy.

Brandon Schlacht, a senior philosophy major, initiated this event. He was very pleased that Jamrich 102 was almost full, and everyone appeared to be involved in the discussion.

“I couldn’t be happier with the response; it was superb,” Schlacht said. “The students handled themselves very well.”

He feels that the debate got students thinking about something that is rarely discussed in an open forum.

“I hope people have some of their prejudices broken,” Schlacht said. “Many atheists view Christians as backward, and atheists think Christians don’t think, don’t examine their god, when many of them do in fact.”

Though some posters advertising the event were torn down or vandalized, he said that overall he has received good response about hosting such an event.

“Any time you spark some kind of intellectual discussion, and any time you really have a moment where you put someone in a position where they have to really explore their beliefs, it’s a good thing,” Schlacht said. “It promotes intellectual growth in every aspect. We’re in a college, and we should be doing as much as we can to explore ourselves.”

Kirstin Meyer, a sophomore zoology major, spoke on the theological side because she felt that it was important to represent the existence of God.

“I hope that it can just get people thinking and get stuff out there that they need to hear,” Meyer said.

She said that she hoped to give students who attended a more clear idea of what theology is, more than whimsical beliefs.

“It’s not just an irrational faith; it should be considered as a valid scientific theory. There is a reason why humans can see that God exists,” Meyer said.

After the debate, Schlacht said that many people approached him, telling him that the discussion was well done and he should continue it in the future. He hopes to hold another God debate next semester.