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A recent Newsweek poll showed that over 91 percent of adults surveyed believe in God.

This is an astounding number to me — that 91 percent of the people I meet and interact with in a day believe in some controller or creator of the universe.

Nearly half of those surveyed rejected the theory of evolution.

As an agnostic, I find little wrong with believing in a god, other than the fact that I have no idea if one (or more) actually exists.

The real question is: Which god does most of the public believe in?

Zeus? Allah? Yahweh? The fierce Aztec god Quetzalcoatl? Is Satan a god to some?

The real problem with this poll lies in the word “god” itself. It’s just too vague. What is “god,” and how can it be summed up in one word that means the same thing to the entire American public?

Quite simply, it cannot. But the sheer (almost unbelievable) number of people who believe in “God” — whatever that means — in this country have presidential candidates John McCain and Barack Obama scrambling to make a case for the divine.

On August 16, McCain and Obama appeared in front of an evangelical megachurch lead by the Rev. Rick Warren. While neither candidate attends the church, the need for such an appearance is obvious.

After all, it is more likely for an American to believe in a god than for someone belonging to pretty much any other culture in the world.

Millions of people identify as evangelicals — millions of people who are obliged to vote in the way that best benefits their churches in the coming November elections.

During their appearance, the candidates were asked the same questions by Warren, questions that were deemed most applicable to the evangelical cause. Obama answered first, and not always the way the evangelicals would have liked. Obama stayed true to his pro-choice stance, but denounced gay marriage, saying that marriage is between a man and a woman. He supported civil unions for homosexuals with hospital-visitation rights.

McCain answered second. Though it came out later that McCain wasn’t in the soundproof box that would have prevented him from hearing Obama’s Q&A session, McCain answered as an evangelical follower would have expected. He said that human life begins the second a woman’s egg is fertilized.

Errr, what? That’s another column entirely — one I’ll actually never write. Though I love your hate mail, I value my own life. But I digress.

In this election, voters will be faced with a moral dilemma: Vote for the candidate whose party led us in to an unnecessary war; though thousands of troop and Iraqi deaths later, the Republicans are still the party with stronger religious faith.

Or, you can vote for the young candidate that promises hope and an end to the policies of the Bush administration, who may lack experience and support views that contrast their own.

This election, I ask voters to focus on what we know to be true. Focus on issues of human suffering, the economy and education.

If God exists, “he” might be counting on us to make the right decisions for ourselves.

Even if “he” doesn’t exist, it couldn’t hurt.

Let’s not make this election God’s ultimate popularity contest. Let’s focus on each other instead of the ambiguous force in the sky.

Christina used “Quetzalcoatl” in a column. It’s going to be a good year. Reach her by e-mailing her at

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