inconsistencies in liberal* Christianity and I'm finding I need to discuss it again as some news items have been causing me to facepalm.
So let's discuss the latest news in this post...a US Senate candidate from Indiana, Richard Mourdock, said during a debate that "when a woman becomes pregnant during rape 'that it is something God intended.'" Many people have been outraged over this comment, but why? Well, I know why — people are having an emotional reaction to how heartless it seems to be to say such a thing about rape victims instead of thinking rationally about what he said. But if people think rationally about this, it should not come as any surprise. How many times do you hear people thank God for their pregnancy and/or children? How many times do you hear them speak of children as a "gift from God" or, similarly, a "miracle from God" or "God's little miracle," etc, etc, etc? Is it not as though they act as if there was no way they could have gotten pregnant if it were not for God's intervention? Well, if God's intervention is required for pregnancies resulting from consensual sex, then why not from non-consensual sex, a.k.a. rape? (Here's a truly outrageous suggestion — "Men, having trouble conceiving a child with your wife? Try raping her instead of waiting for God to intervene through consensual sex!") (UPDATE: More importantly, we often treat the people who claim their children as gifts as perfectly sane and rational. Now, that doesn't mean a lot of us aren't rolling our eyes out of view and may be hiding our disapproval out of "respect," but then this is the consequence of hiding such disapproval. If people don't know we disapprove, then they will take our silence as implication of consent. /UPDATE
I think some people — probably because their ability to think rationally had been compromised by that emotional reaction — have construed his statement to mean that God intended the rape to happen, too. I don't think that is what Mourdock meant, but, even if he did, I find that somewhat consistent with how some view the world. Consider weather. Planning an outdoor wedding and you get favorable weather? "Thanks be to God!" It ends up being rainy? Well...that's just unfortunate. No one seems to get upset with their god...except maybe people in the legal community who call hurricanes, earthquakes, tornadoes and such "Acts of God." (Is this the irony to which Alanis Morissette was referring?) Similar inconsistencies may occur when it comes to human caused tragedy such as a mass shooting. You will get those who claim their god saved them. Yet, since this god is thought to be all-powerful (or at least very, very powerful), it should be able to save everyone. The implication here is that this god allowed — or should I say "intended" — those people to die. Though, sometimes the relatives of victims will realize this to some extent when they claim they will "trust in God's plan," or something to that extent. But to suggest that a person getting raped is part of God's plan? Outrageous!
Now for the difficult part...I am glad that liberals get put off when a politician (or anyone for that matter) says something like this. But for fuck's sake! I hate it when I have to defend a conservative for being more rational than liberals...unless all the liberals who are outraged are not religious, but I doubt it. So if you are one of those liberal Christians (or any religious person) who sees no problem when people think that their child is a gift from God, but do have a problem with Mourdock thinking a child from rape is likewise a gift, you are being a hypocritical idiot. Stop it, please! Either both are a gift or neither are. Or you have to explain — rationally — why one is and the other is not. What's it going to be?
UPDATE_2: Perhaps worth noting is that many conservatives who are "outraged" are likely so for political purposes. In other words, they don't disagree, per se, but rather they know such comments are politically toxic. /UPDATE_2
* When I refer to liberal Christians, I am referring to Christians who are politically liberal, not necessarily theologically liberal.