Skeptophilia (skep-to-fil-i-a) (n.) - the love of logical thought, skepticism, and thinking critically. Being an exploration of the applications of skeptical thinking to the world at large, with periodic excursions into linguistics, music, politics, cryptozoology, and why people keep seeing the face of Jesus on grilled cheese sandwiches.

Friday, March 18, 2016

Voting for the voice of god

Below I present to you a series of quotes.  You'll see a pattern pretty quickly.
  • It’s the natural law of God. We have a theocracy right now.  You know, the only thing worse than not being elected president would be to be elected president without God’s blessing. I can’t think of a worse place in the world to be than in the Oval Office without God’s hand upon you.  -- Mike Huckabee
  • It was as if there was a presence of the Holy Spirit in the room and we all were at awe and Ted, all that came out of his mouth, he said, ‘Here am I Lord, use me.  Here am I Lord, I surrender to whatever Your will for my life is.’  And it was at that time that he felt a peace about running for president of the United States. -- Rafael Cruz, speaking of his son, Senator Ted Cruz
  • I feel fingers [of god]...  I finally said, ‘Lord if you truly want me to do this, you’ll have to open the doors, because I’m certainly not going to kick them down.  And if you open the doors I will walk through them.  And as long as you hold them open, I will walk through them...  I believe God will make it clear to me if that’s something I’m supposed to do.  I will run if God grabs me by the collar and asks me to run. -- Ben Carson
  • Our goal is eternity.  The purpose of our life is to cooperate with God’s plan, and I believe that's what this [the presidential race] is about...  To those who much has been given, much is expected, and we will be asked to account for that, whether your treasures are stored up on earth or in heaven.  And to me, I try to allow that to influence me in everything that I do. -- Marco Rubio
  • We have prayed a lot about this decision, and we believe with all our hearts that this [Santorum running for president] is what God wants. -- Rick Santorum
  • My relationship with God drives every major decision in my life.  Our country is at a crossroads and we need a proven conservative leader who is not afraid to fight for what is right — even when it’s not politically expedient.  My decisions are guided by my relationship with God. -- Scott Walker
  • He and his wife believe they are touched by God, and that this is his time.  It's like – they can't lose – that's the sense of it.  I don't know if he'll win the nomination, but I'm absolutely sure he'll be one of the last two Republicans standing. -- an anonymous supporter and financier, speaking of Governor Rick Perry
So what we have here is a host of presidential candidates who are all basically claiming that god told them personally that he wanted them to run.  Fortunately, one of them at least is aware that god can't simultaneously support everybody:
I think sometimes, while people say, “we’re praying about this, we’re asking God,” that’s fine, but it seems like the criteria that I’ve been told for selecting candidates seems very secular.  It’s about well, this person is polling well, this person has the cash.  And I’m thinking, you know if these guys were going up against Goliath they would’ve insisted that it was the big guy, with the king’s armor—they never would’ve allowed that shepherd boy with the five smooth stones, and with Gideon’s army, they would’ve run for cover when God got Gideon’s army down to 300. -- Mike Huckabee, speaking about his rivals Marco Rubio and Ted Cruz
But of course, since he's implying that because of all of this, god's supporting him, I'm not sure we've gained any ground, here.

[image courtesy of the Wikimedia Commons]

And of course, the other problem is that the unifying theme between all of these guys is that none of them are going to get the Republican nomination.  (We could argue over whether Ted Cruz still has a shot, but I think that realistically, he's done for.)  So what's going on here?  Was god trolling all of them?  Or saying, basically, "Yes.  It's my will that you run" without adding, "... but you're all gonna lose."  Or just telling them what they wanted to hear, because the almighty didn't want to hurt their feelings?

The problem is exactly what Susan B. Anthony observed -- "I distrust those people who know so well what God wants them to do, because it so often coincides with their own desires."

So anyway, it's all rather amusing to we non-religious types that one of the only Republican candidates who didn't claim to be anointed by god -- Donald Trump -- is looking like a shoo-in for the nomination.  Of course, the downside is that Donald Trump winning the nomination doesn't only mean that the God Squad didn't get it, but that, um, Donald Trump will have won the nomination.  So my laughter is ringing a little hollow at the moment.

Maybe god could tell Donald that he was destined to become president.  Given god's batting average so far, it'd pretty much assure that he'd lose.

1 comment: