The predatory providence of ‘pro-life’ Richard Mourdock (part 2)

(The first part of this post is here.)

Here, again, is what Republican U.S. Senate candidate Richard Mourdock of Indiana said:

I struggled with it myself for a long time, but I came to realize life is that gift from God, and I think even when life begins in that horrible situation of rape, that it is something that God intended to happen.

Ta-Nehisi Coates clarifies what that means:

1. Mourdock believes that life begins at conception.

2. He also believes that whenever conception occurs, God intended it and it is a gift.

3. He further believes that rape is one way in which conception sometimes occurs.

4. Thus he believes that conception through rape is a gift from God and furthermore intended by God.

Or, as Jill Filipovic summarizes: “[Mourdock] did not say that rape is a gift from God. He did say that an unwanted pregnancy is a post-rape goodie bag from the Lord. And that the Lord intended it to happen that way.”

Or, per Sarah Sentilles: “If the pregnancy is a gift from God and God is in control of everything, then the rape is also God’s work — for that’s how the woman got pregnant.”

Garance Franke-Ruta cuts to what I think is the core of Richard Mourdock’s plan — or, his interpretation of God’s plan, which amounts to the same thing: “A man who forces a woman to bear his child through forced sex should be permitted to do so, because abortion is murder and every conceived child is a gift from God.”

That can be stated in the other direction as well: Abortion is murder and every conceived child is a gift from God, therefore a man who forces a woman to bear his child through forced sex should be permitted to do so.

Post-rape pregnancies are where blanket anti-abortion views become de facto support for coercive mating and the legally sanctioned denial of agency to women not only on the question of whether to have a child, but who the child’s father should be.

…  The idea that coerced reproduction is God’s will is of a piece with the belief that the subjection of women is God’s will. The two ideas are inextricably intertwined historically, and the former is stubbornly resilient relic of the latter. To unpack this a bit more: According to Mourdock’s thinking, a man who forces a woman to have sex with him against her will is a criminal, but a man who forces a woman to bear his child through forced sex should be permitted to do so, because abortion is murder and every conceived child is a gift from God.

Do we want to live in a country where any man at any time can decide he wants to bear children with any woman and she has no right to stop that from happening if he can overpower her by force? If we do — and that’s the society Mourdock is advocating — then we have immediately left the society the feminists constructed and re-entered one where coerced mating is rewarded reproductively.

Is Mourdock’s extreme politics the consequence of his odious theology? Or is his odious theology a consequence of his extreme politics?

It doesn’t matter. Whichever one he latched onto first was bound to introduce the other. The two things require one another and cannot be separated.

Here let’s look a bit more at Mourdock’s theology.

Where Do You Find a Theology of ‘God-Intended Rape’?” Tony Jones asks. He answers with a quote from John Piper that offers a Calvinist perspective in which “God has a purpose” for deadly bridge collapses.

Other Calvinist theologians are appalled by Piper’s views — and Mourdock’s. G. Jeffrey MacDonald of The Christian Science Monitor offered several Calvinists the chance to distance themselves from Mourdock’s notion of providential rape. They jumped at it:

What Mourdock said “is offensive,” says Richard Lints, a theologian of the Reformed tradition, which has Calvinist roots, and dean at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary in South Hamilton, Mass. “The clumsiness is [to] so align God with evil that God becomes a horrific figure. It’s contrary to anything you read in scripture, and it removes the human responsibility.”

… “The Calvinist would say God has permitted [bad] things to happen” because humans have free agency, says Gary Scott Smith, a Presbyterian minister and historian at Grove City College in Grove City, Pa. “But we should not attribute [evil things] to God, even though God can bring good things out of them.”

Susan Brooks Thistlethwaite is a woman, and therefore someone John Piper refuses to be taught by. That’s a shame, because she schools him and Mourdock on the implicit blasphemy of their providence-by-predator theology:

Rape is sin by the perpetrator and God does not cause sin. Conception following rape is a tragedy, not part of “God’s will.” The capacity for tragedy to occur in human life, and indeed in what we call “natural evil” like earthquakes, is a result of what Christians call “the fall” from perfection as described in Genesis.

When you make God the author of conception following rape, you make God the author of sin. This is a huge theological error, and one that Christian theologians have rejected since the first centuries of the faith.

… It is cheap, easy and wrong to attribute all that happens in the world to God, as this makes God the author of sin and evil, and thus less than all good.

MacDonald’s Monitor article did find some Calvinist types willing to defend the Piper/Mourdock idea of predatory providence. Peter Thuesen warns, “If you start restricting the scope of providence, that’s a slippery slope to atheism. … It calls into question whether there really is a God who controls all things.”

Not really, no. But it does call into question whether there really is a God who votes Republican due to their extreme opposition to legal abortion.

As Franke-Ruta shows, that’s the theological error here — not some warped form of Calvinism. Mourdock and Piper express a warped form of Calvinist theology because they started out as Calvinists, then allowed that belief to be warped by the inescapable ramifications of the anti-abortion dogma that they have made the bedrock core of their religion.

Sarah Sentilles notes that this warped “God intended to happen” theology is a majority view among white American evangelicals, and provides a helpful description of how this shapes one’s understanding of the world we live in:

Imagine God up there looking down at the world and planning our days: Should the Giants go to the World Series or should it be the Cardinals? Giants. Should that woman make it through the intersection safely or should she wreck? Wreck. Should that child suffering from malaria live or should he die? Live. If God allows certain things to happen and prohibits others — if God intends certain things instead of others — then it follows that God approves of what God chooses. Then it follows that God intended you to get pregnant by being raped. He planned it; He asked for it; He wanted it.

The logic is circular: whatever happens, God meant it to happen. The very occurrence of something, then — snow, a home run, illness, rape — becomes its own kind of justification, a way to prove it’s what God wanted — which means all kinds of oppression can be cast as God’s will. So where does it end? What can’t be justified by appealing to God’s intention in this way? This essay? God intended it (as if that will stop all the hate mail I’m likely to get when this posts). Flood? God intended it. Pregnancy? God intended it. Environmental destruction? God intended it. Mass extinction? Hate crimes? Slavery? Genocide? God wanted it all.

So in this view, every rape and every bridge collapse is what God intended and what God wanted and what God chose. And thus, since rape and deadly bridge collapses are Bad Things, God must have intended and chosen them for some reason — to create something good out of those evils.

Eric Reitan thus sees what Mourdock et. al. are attempting as a desperate kind of redemptive theology:

This theology is part of a broad class of theologies — what I’ll call redemptive theologies — which share the idea that God cares about the evils of the world and is acting to redeem them. Since my own theology is a theology of redemption, I obviously don’t think the redemptive aspect of Barnes’ theology is where the trouble lies.

But not all theologies of redemption are created equal. Barnes’ theology makes God into a micromanager of sin, redeeming sins one by one, turning each in turn into another cool refreshing sip of spiritual lemonade. God is sovereign over every outcome, stepping in at every instance of wickedness to miraculously turn it to the good of those who trust in Him (sometimes by making babies out of rapes, sometimes in other ways).

… Not every redemptive theology is like this. In fact, the core redemptive theology of Christianity isn’t like this. Traditional Christian thought has it that God redeemed a broken world through a singular intervention in history.

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  • Nick Franco

    I kinda don’t get why Christians are upset by this sort of talk. If you believe that an all-powerful god is the author of reality then it follows that everything that happens is according to plan, doesn’t it?

  • Tom S

    Not really, no- that would be Deism, I think. Christians outside the sort of extreme Calvinists Fred is discussing here generally allow for some variable in how the world works that either beyond God’s control or aspects of Creation he relinquished to the free will of humanity or whatever other exception- thus human agency actually matters. Without that, the whole idea of ethics and grace and so forth become kind of meaningless, as it’s all just some odd one sided game God is playing.

  • Jurgan

    It depends on whether you believe sin is inevitable and part of God’s plan, or whether it represents humans rejecting God’s will.  If you believe God wants everyone to live loving, compassionate lives and sin is a result of people doing the opposite, then it makes no sense to attribute sin to God.

  • Carstonio

     Hold on a minute…Thisthlethwaite writes that “The capacity for tragedy to occur in human life, and indeed in what we
    call ‘natural evil’ like earthquakes, is a result of what Christians
    call ‘the fall’ from perfection as described in Genesis.” That doesn’t seem much different from the Falwell/Robertson idea that natural disasters are punishments on specific groups of sinners and heathens, except that the entire human race is being punished. She may or may not have a point about it being “cheap, easy and wrong to attribute all that happens in the
    world to God” but she, and some of the other theologians quoted here, insist on blaming sin and evil on humanity instead.

    Thisthlethwaite seems to see any theology that makes the Christian god “less than all good” as inherently flawed. I’ve said before that theology insists on starting with the assumption of all goodness, almost like it must be defended at all costs. From my limited knowledge of theology, the idea of any particular theological suggestion being “in error” seems to wrongly imply that there’s an objective standard for evaluating the suggestion’s accuracy. It seems to be an exercise in orthodoxy instead. I don’t see what would be so bad with a theology at least considering the possibilities of gods whose goodness is finite or who are malevolent or indifferent. It’s not that extreme to imagine that tragedy is simply inherent in the experience of living, whether or not gods exist.

  • Wednesday

    .Thisthlethwaite writes that “The capacity for tragedy to occur in human
    life, and indeed in what we call ‘natural evil’ like earthquakes, is a
    result of what Christians call ‘the fall’ from perfection as described
    in Genesis.” That doesn’t seem much different from the Falwell/Robertson
    idea that natural disasters are punishments on specific groups of
    sinners and heathens, except that the entire human race is being
    punished.

    I think there’s an important difference between blaming The Fall for suffering and evil that happens in the world, and blaming specific existing groups for natural disasters.  The latter is hate and bile directed at existing, real people.  Furthermore, Falwell and Robertson target those groups specifically to perpetuate discrimination against currently-oppressed groups and to shore up their own power and control.

    Whereas the Fall blames two humans who may or may not have existed, but certainly aren’t around right now, so unless you take the historically popular “Eve = all women, but somehow Adam != all men” route, you’re not blaming anyone alive right now and not furthering harm to already-oppressed groups. 

    And actually, I think blaming the Fall for human capacity for evil is a bit circular for many Christians, since for the non-“literalists”, the Fall is a metaphorical story explaining why humans have the capacity to do evil and why there is suffering in the world. So… there’s suffering because of the Fall, but the Fall is just a metaphorical story to explain why there’s suffering. As a logical argument it’s not a good one, but that’s a completely separate issue.

  • http://twitter.com/FearlessSon FearlessSon

    If every conception is a gift from God, then abortion clinics must be the customer service desk for getting a refund.  

    I tend to think that God is understanding and accommodating that way.  

  • Tom S

    At any rate, the useful answers to questions of ‘did God intend this specific horrid thing’ tend to be a.) who knows? and b.) don’t be an asshole about it. Certainly that is, allowing for paraphrasing, the kind of answer Christ tended to give.

  • Joshua

    Too right.

  • Mary

    Remember Job? God ruined his life so that he (in His Infinite Wisdom) could win a bet with the Devil? Why should anyone be surprised about the logical result of this “reasoning”?

  • dave7272

    To me, abortion in the context of The Bible is very vague. First, The Bible does not say inexplicably that the act if abortion is wrong. Also, it would be difficult to interpret the Bibles’ stance on the choice of conception from rape.

  • http://www.facebook.com/jrandyowens Randy Owens

    God redeems S&H Green Stamps?

  • http://www.oliviareviews.com/ PepperjackCandy

    I once saw a button that said, “Jesus saves sinners and redeems them for valuable prizes.”  I have always wished I bought that one.

  • dave7272

    Would also be a great idea for a license plate holder.

  • Don Gisselbeck

    I wonder if we humans with our fixation on power and status simply cannot understand a Being who is radically noncontrolling, completely unconcerned with status and refuses to exercise power (all attributes consistent with the story of the Incarnation).

  • Baby_Raptor

    If god allows it to happen, IE refuses to stop it, then it’s his fault. Free will has no place in the argument, because free will is already being denied. 

    And if you DO want to insist that free will has a place in the argument, then you’re standing up for a deity that values the will of a rapist over that of an innocent woman/child. At that point, I have to look at you and ask “What the Fuck are you smoking?”

  • http://twitter.com/shutsumon Becka Sutton

    The problem with the argument that holding this position means God intended the rape to happen is that it’s quite (British quite) possible he’s not thinking that at all.

    It’s because rape is so awful that this position provokes such a visceral reaction.

    I can say this by looking at the brainwarpingly strange way the Catholic  Church looks at a certain kind of conception that is 100% consensual. IVF.

    1. IVF is sinful because it’s against God’s will and intent.
    2. Ensoulment is miraculous and requires direct intevention from God.
    3. Embryos that result from IVF are ensouled by God and thus human and exist by his will.

    Believing 1 and 2 you kind of have to believe 3 (and you can apply the same logic to any other situation leading to conception that is classed as sinful) because otherwise you’d be saying that some members of our species do not fit your metaphysical description of human and that could lead to some even worse places. But I’ve never actually heard anyone claim that the Church must believe that IVF is God’s will because it believes #3 and yet while IVF (being a matter of wanted consensual children) doesn’t upset us the same logic would have to apply.

  • David Evans

    This discussion raises an interesting point about the nature of the soul. If God chose not to ensoul an embryo resulting from rape or IVF, what would that embryo grow up to be? How much of what we think of as human nature requires the presence of a soul? 

  • http://twitter.com/nedlum Alden Utter

    Well, there was that Angel episode with a child that, according to a demon trapped inside him, had no soul. Kid tries to burn down the house over marshmallow distribution. So, if IVF kids are more likely to be  sociopaths, the theology checks out.

  • http://twitter.com/FearlessSon FearlessSon

    According to The Venture Brothers, everything has a soul, but babies do not get them until they are two, or maybe six months.

  • Amaryllis

    If God chose not to ensoul an embryo resulting from rape or IVF, what
    would that embryo grow up to be? How much of what we think of as human
    nature requires the presence of a soul?

    In the tradition in which I was brought up, all of it. It’s tautological: a human being IS a human soul. A human embryo is a potential human soul. (Where “potential” turns into “actual” may be unclear, but in my personal canon, actual people  take precedence over potential people.)

    God could make a soulless person in the same way he could make a square circle. Not in this universe.

  • EllieMurasaki

    Ain’t you seen the front half of Supernatural S6? Somebody without a soul is creepy as fuck and requires the constant attention of an external moral compass. Also has no need for sleep. Still haven’t figured out how that last works.

  • Carstonio

    I appreciate your point about hate directed at real people, and the metaphorical point of the Fall story. As I read the literal version of the story, death and suffering are inflicted punishments on the entire human race for the transgression of the first two humans. Thisthlethwaite seems to treat those things as punishments while not necessarily believing that the Fall story to be literal history. The human race as a whole didn’t do anything to deserve death and suffering, just as those specific groups didn’t do anything to deserve earthquakes or hurricanes. Obviously none of the Pompeiians are around to take offense at the accusation that they had it coming from Vesuvius, the way that Haitians today would be offended by the same accusation for their earthquake, but the principle is still the same.

  • Antigone10

    Oh, I can fix this!

    God doesn’t give a soul to an embryo until it is a wanted pregnancy or until it’s born.

    You think that’s wrong?  Show me what a soul looks like and how we can measure it and we can go about discovering when it gets attached to the flesh.  

    Ick.  I know there are good Christians out there.  I know that there are many, many people who’s faith informs their lives, and are better people for it.  But it seems like if you’re a good person, at best all religion can do is give you another vocabulary to express that.  If you’re a person with terrible ideas, all religion can do is give you an imaginary bully to help you with those idea.

  • EllieMurasaki

    God doesn’t give a soul to an embryo until it is a wanted pregnancy or until it’s born.

    I’m trying to figure out whether, if I believed in heaven and lost a wanted fetus, I’d be less disturbed by the notion that my baby would be waiting in heaven for me or that my baby was no great loss because of not yet having a soul. In any event I am fond of the concept that ensoulment occurs with first breath; that way the process can be automated rather than requiring an entity to constantly oversee pregnancies to determine at what point the pregnancies become known to and wanted by the women in question.

  • AnonaMiss

     Which of course just delays the question of an un-souled human to a near-future world in which we can keep people born without lungs alive by delivering oxygen to their bloodstream directly.

  • EllieMurasaki

    True.

  • Antigone10

    I’m going to go with “wanted pregnancy” just because I’ve known those who have miscarried or had an abortion and they strongly believe that there was a little someone in there.  To the point where they needed to grieve.  Who am I to argue?  

    I’m being flip, anyway.  I don’t even know if I believe that a person HAS a soul.  But if we’re going to base legislation on ensoulment, then I say that’s when a person has a soul.  Without any more information on the nature and measurements of souls, we’re waiting for the wave form to collapse upon one side being right and the other wrong.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Alan-Alexander/502988241 Alan Alexander

     God doesn’t give a soul to an embryo until it is a wanted pregnancy or until it’s born.

    I’ve been flat-out telling anti-choicers for years that I think you get your soul when you draw your first breath based on Genesis 2:7 — “then the LORD God formed the man of dust from the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living creature.”  Usually, they get all huffy and accuse me of twisting Bible verses for my own satanic purposes.

  • J_

    *… The capacity for tragedy to occur in human life, and indeed in what we call “natural evil” like earthquakes, is a result of what Christians call “the fall” from perfection as described in Genesis.*

    No it isn’t. Earthquakes are caused by differential movement along fault lines and/or as a co-effect of vulcanism. There is no evidence that fault movement and/or vulcanism has ever *not* occurred on Earth (other than during the Hadean period). So, no Fall. Sorry theologians.

    And yeah, Fred: I’m sure you have something halfway clever to talk about me ‘not getting the joke’. I also don’t see anything other than squiggly lines when I look at Magic Eye pictures. Make whatever freebie point you want of that. Maybe I’d take the time to ‘get’ your ‘joke’ if the joke were ever for once actually funny instead of stupid and appalling.

    There is only one way of knowing the world and it’s science and not faith. And science has disproven faith. I get that you don’t *want* to admit that, but your willigness in this matter is irrelevant.

    If able but not willing, why considered good?
    If willing but not able, whence a god?

  • Lori

     J_, your reading comprehension needs some work. The thing you quoited? Fred  wasn’t the one who said that.

    Also, get off my side. Atheists like you make the rest of us look bad.

  • J_

    Uh huh. Well, if I’m contractually obligated to dance- I don’t want to be part of your revolution

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Michael-Albright/100001047690991 Michael Albright

    Actually, I think you’ve been asked not to dance. Nobody’s going to stop you, but nobody stopped Elaine Benes, either.

  • http://danel4d.livejournal.com/ Danel

    And science has disproven faith.

    Do you have a link to that study? It sounds interesting. 

  • http://twitter.com/FearlessSon FearlessSon

    Do you have a link to that study? It sounds interesting.

    Heh, the snark is strong with this one.  :)

    More seriously though, my opinion would be that science trumps faith, at least as far as the observable material universe is concern.  Sorry Ken Ham, the Earth is not five to eight millennia old.

  • bobnelsonfr

    Does “life begins at fertilization” mean that the sperm and egg are not alive?

    Does life arise from unlife?

  • Jurgan

    The ironic thing about rape exemptions for abortion is that denying them is actually more consistent with the claim that embryos are full humans.  If you believe an embryo is a human, then it shouldn’t matter how it was conceived (you wouldn’t support killing a four-year-old because it was the product of rape, would you?).  I think this contradiction between the rights of the mother and the embryo is what ultimately leads to the conclusion that a “pro-life” position is untenable.

  • Carstonio

     I agree that seeking to ban abortion in all circumstances is actually more consistent, although I doubt that the outcomes of the position are any better. A blanket ban would punish women who don’t want to become mothers. A ban in case of rape or incest would punish women who want to have sex without becoming mothers.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Michael-Albright/100001047690991 Michael Albright

    Consistency is overrated. I’m pretty sure those folks also believe they’re supposed to be compassionate and forgiving, but I’m at a loss as to how hard pro-lifers (as opposed to exception-friendly “soft” pro-life) are showing consistenct with what their Bible repeatedly insists is the most important thing.

  • Carstonio

     I thought it was obvious that I thought the consistency was unimportant, since either way women are being punished when abortion is banned or restricted.

  • MaryKaye

    I saw this issue come up live at an RTC funeral.  A young woman in the congregation was grieving the loss of a wanted pregnancy, and she talked about “Peanut” being in heaven with the elder whose funeral it was.  I personally found it hard to imagine this; I think many of the people around me did.  But it was hard to imagine their conception of Heaven in general.  Grandpa was “up there” fishing and waiting around for us to join him–but suicide is a sin.  Also, Grandpa’s was (as far as I could tell) pretty much a deathbed conversion.  The person they’d known for 70 years wasn’t the person who would have been in that Heaven, at least it sure didn’t sound that way to me.

    I don’t believe in Heaven.  There are things about Christianity I could probably get on board with in this life, but I really don’t believe in Heaven.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    The notion of “pregnancy as a gift even from rape” just makes my face go D-X

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Michael-Albright/100001047690991 Michael Albright

    That God is a bad gift-giver.

  • flat

    The great abortion debate.

    I am likely going to get a lot of critism for saying this.
    And I don’t want to sound like I am defending Richard Mourdock, and I think that every situation that forces people to take an abortion is different per person.

    But I always had this feeling that if you take an abortion you take away the embyro, but you don’t take away the feelings you have for the child.
    There are people who don’t have any problem afterwards, but I always had an uneasy feeling about those who had an abortion but struggled with guilt afterwards.

    And when I think about that I always felt that they weren’t free but got imprisoned by their guilt, how can I help them, I would never say I told you so.
    I can’t undo their decision, and if the person who got an abortion later decides to take a child how will that guilt affect that child, or the parents.
    Abortion is something that when have done it and regret it afterwards  can’t be mended.
    That is my problem with sexual  freedom: these things don’t free a person but imprison them instead either way

    And by the way richard Mourdoch need to shut the hell up this is a difficult, awkward, subject
    so atleast threat it with the respect it deserves.

  • Antigone10

    Lots of decisions come with struggle and guilt.  Even HAVING a child comes with regret and guilt for a lot of people (but of course, we don’t want to talk about that at all).  We can’t legislate people from making bad decisions, from our perspective.

    I have to say that I feel more free with being able to have consensual sexual relationships than have it result in my imprisonment, death, forced marriage, social shunning, or/and economic ruin.  Because, remember, that’s what made it NOT free in the first place.

  • Carstonio

     I don’t know if you’re a man or a woman, but since I’m a man myself, I will never know what having an abortion is like, so I cannot decide for a woman whether it’s best for her to have or not have the procedure. (I shouldn’t decide what’s best for anyone but myself or my own children anyway, but that’s a separate issue.) Your mistake is in equating sexual freedom with abortion, as if all abortions stemmed from sexual irresponsibility.

  • flat

    you are right about that not all abortions come from sexual irresponsibility.

    my point is that there can be no sexual freedom if people do not take their responsibilities  seriously.

    And because Mourdock isn’t taking his responsibilities seriously there can be no sexual freedom.

    Ps I am a man

  • http://shiftercat.livejournal.com/ ShifterCat

    flat, having an abortion is one form of taking responsibility.  A woman says, “I am not prepared for a pregnancy right now, so I will end it.”

    Further reading here: I’m Not Sorry — Our Stories

  • JustoneK

    Once again, the single greatest thing forgotten among all of this is the souls of the already living – the mothers and their other children already born.  This prioritizes possible birth over confirmed living people.  I hate that.

  • LL

    RE  “The logic is circular: whatever happens, God meant it to happen.”

    Yeah, pretty much. That is exactly what these people think. Because it’s very convenient for them that everything that happens (much of which they’d also like very much to control) is supposedly sanctioned by God. Thus, if you don’t like it, suck it. 

    Can’t wait to see Victor’s take on this, or more likely, IT!!! Should be as helpful as always. That Victor, an unrecognized genius of his time.  

  • http://www.facebook.com/cphlewis Chloe P. H. Lewis

    Antigone10 & related: People who discover, when trying to have children, that they’re infertile and will never conceive children of their own bodies also grieve deeply and for good reason. I respect that, but obviously there was never any kind of embryo to argue about ensoulment in. Humans are attached to possible futures, so we have interests in possible children even before they’re actual children. We can respect and support possible children without thinking of every fertilized egg as an actual child.
     

  • banancat

    Mourdock is a perpetrator of rape culture, so I suspect he views rape as some unavoidable, unstoppable tragedy much like a hurricane or an earthquake.  He doesn’t see it as a case of a person sinning, because he likes to believe the myth that male sexuality is just so powerful and uncontrollable.  And since he thinks it’s just so obvious this this natural force is unstoppable, he thinks he is actually saying a good thing that sometimes you get a “gift” from this.  He sees it as making something good from a bad situation because he doesn’t think it’s possible or worthwhile to actually stop that bad situation from occurring in the first place.

  • JustoneK

    Even on that tho – the hurricane and the earthquake are _direct results_ of too much sin in an area, which then means they could be avoided by sinning less.

    So if they’re equivalent then rape only happens to sinners anyway.  Argh.

  • BC

    What bothers me most about the abortion debate is the way women just disappear.  The emphasis of the pro-forced-birth group is on a fetus (“baby,” they call it) and women are never considered.  Look at Murdouck – what did he say about the woman?  Nothing, it’s God and the baby and the woman is just not there.   Now I’d be for this, too, if there weren’t living, breathing, feeling women in the equation who these forced birthers want to give up 9 months of their life and their possible health for another person.  Even here, most of you are forgetting where there is a pregnancy, there is a woman.

  • Guest

    “The logic is circular: whatever happens, God meant it to happen.”

    So when the Roe vs. Wade ruling was made, God meant that to happen. And  when someone has an abortion, God meant it to happen. Who are these people that they’re trying to thwart God’s will?!

  • Joshua

    Who are these people that they’re trying to thwart God’s will?!

    But even the thwarting is according to the will of God.

    Frankly, God’s got issues.

  • Antigone10

    God better come down here and personally tell us his will (and a compelling argument as to why I should care) or gift us all with Divine mind-reading abilities.  Otherwise, I’m going to say his “Divine will” is to do away with the concept of private property and wear purple every third Sunday, and it’ll be equally correct as anything else anyone says.


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