I'm a conservative Christian. Yes, my parents are (generally) conservative. Yes, I grew up in the church. No, I'm not brain-washed.

As a student at a public university in the United States, I'm consistently surrounded by left-leaning atheists and agnostics. Or people who used to believe in God, but have had some sort of experience that turned them off of the idea.

In other words, as a white, conservative Christian woman on a college campus -- I'm the minority.

I get slammed for being anti-feminist (not true). I get harassed for being pro-life (definitely true). All around, I get told that my beliefs are outdated and no longer applicable to the society we're in.

The worst part of this all is that people assume I believe these things simply because my parents believe them. Yes, that's where I was first introduced to the ideas and belief system, I'll give you that. But that's not why I believe in Jesus and lean toward the right politically.

Please afford me the courtesy of assuming I can think for myself.

I'm 23 years old, and I live in Oregon. I have close friends that come from many different walks of life. How dare anyone assume that in those 23 years, I've never had to defend myself or my beliefs, especially to those closest to me?

I don't know everything. I don't have an answer for every political question that's thrown my way. But I'll admit it. I will never tell you that I believe something when I haven't researched it on my own. If I don't know, and it's something that interests me, you can bet that I'll research it until I have a firm stance. But even then, I'm open to hearing other opinions.

The left is known for preaching tolerance and open-mindedness. Well, isn't it a two-way street? I would love to sit down and have a conversation about something we disagree on. It's only through conversations like that, that beliefs are formed.

If no one has ever opposed something you believe in, how can you be sure your belief is true?

I'm a Christian because I am compelled by His magnificent glory to bow before His throne. I'm a Christian because Jesus has covered up my failures and shortcomings in the most brutal of ways -- by dying a painful death. I'm a Christian because Jesus proved Himself stronger than death. (This is not a conclusive list.)

I'm conservative because I believe in a smaller government. I'm conservative because I believe that no one has the right to terminate another life, even if that life is being grown within their bodies. (This is also not a conclusive list.)

Do you disagree? Let's have a conversation.