An Atheist and a Gentleman


The right wing idiots, the ones who label themselves Christians, have really gone and done it this time. Mike Huckabee, some guy from the “American Family Association,” and I’m sure many others, have made sure to tell all of America exactly why mass shootings, like the one in Newtown on Friday, occur.

You might think they’ve blamed a lack of access to proper mental health care, or the all-too-convenient access to assault weapons. But if you think that, then you haven’t been paying attention. The obvious reason is staring us right in the face. Or, rather, looking down at us from above. Or carrying us on the beach so that there is only one set of footprints. That’s right: it’s god.

Because, you see, we have spent 50 years (their number, not mine) telling god we don’t want him. For 50 years, the “liberal elite” have told god that he just doesn’t belong in schools or in the public forum. Nevermind the Constitution! Forget the separation of church and state! If only we had been allowed to pray every morning before classes began, or before kickoff of every football game, tragedies like Newtown and Aurora would not be occurring.

According to that guy from the “American Family Association” (it should be obvious why I’m putting this horrible organization in quotes), god is a “gentleman” who doesn’t go where he’s not wanted. So on Friday morning, he looked down from his perch and saw Adam Lanza shooting his way through an elementary school. The gentleman checked his list, noted that Sandy Hook Elementary School had not performed the ritualistic prayer and/or sacrifice to him that morning, and relaxed, knowing that he didn’t have to do anything for these god damned sinners.

Sure, some of those children and teachers probably cried out for god in those inconceivable final moments of their lives. But that was not god’s problem. He could not be blamed for it, even though he “created” the man perpetrating the madness and apparently had all the power in the world to nip that in the bud. So he kept his finger off the trigger while Adam Lanza fired away.

You could chalk it up to just a few at the top of the right wing power structure saying this sort of thing, but their sheep are believing it, too. My own cousin posted nonsense like this on Facebook the day after the tragedy.

Please, if you’re someone who posted this or finds yourself nodding in agreement, think about what you’re saying. God is telling this student, “I know that I made all of you in my image and I am in control of everything that happens down there, but I also gave you free will. So since you decided to follow the laws of your land and attempt to respect all people’s religions (or non-religious beliefs), I decided that massacres like this are just going to happen. Sorry. It just really pisses me off when people don’t believe in me. Because I am super selfish and only interested in getting as many mindless followers as possible. Oops. I mean: because I want all to know the joy that is my presence in their lives and find eternal life in heaven.”

If you believe that god did this because we don’t allow him in schools, but at the same time find yourself in disagreement with the methods of groups like the Westboro Baptist Church, take a moment to bask in your hypocrisy. The WBC believes that events like Friday are a direct result of moral decrepitude in our nation, and that god is punishing us for our sins. Which is exactly what you’re saying when you tell us that god let those children die because our nation has “turned away from him.”

If you truly believe that your god didn’t show up on Friday because he was angry that no one believes in him, you need to know two things: 1) a vast majority of individuals in this nation believe in the Christian god; 2) belief in the Christian god and belief in the separation of church and state are not mutually exclusive ideas.

Oh, and 3) your god is a serious douchebag. There is no other explanation for it.

To be fair, the crazies spouting this crap don’t believe god was totally missing in the events of Friday morning. Not at all. Mike Huckabee believes god showed up after the tragedy, in the form of hugs and police officers and candy and rainbows and sunshine. You know, where he’s the most useful.

I believe that if your god were so great, none of this would ever happen. People would not feel compelled to murder one another in cold blood. We would all get along and walk hand-in-hand on this planet, waiting for the promise of that eternal peace.

But because that doesn’t happen, you have to make up stories about why your god isn’t as all-loving and all-powerful as you preach him to be. “He just wants us all to believe, okay? He’s not such a bad guy. You should see him when he’s being sweet. He just gets like this sometimes.”

So please don’t be confused when those non-believers around you aren’t jumping on the bandwagon. And at this point I’m no longer speaking to just the Mike Huckabees of the world. Anyone who can look those Newtown parents in the eye and seriously say. “I’m praying for you” has lost his/her damn mind. Many of those families were religious. They likely prayed often. But, what, it just wasn’t enough for your god? So he watched as their children died in a bloodbath?

This, right here, is the one and only reason that atheists are labeled “angry.”But it’s never further acknowledged that we have every right to be. So many ridiculous notions in this country are backed up and protected because they also happen to be labeled “religious.” This is my take: any group that truly believes that their god let innocent babies die horrible deaths on Friday in Newtown (and all over the world that day and every other day forever and ever amen) for any reason at all (free will, the need for more angels, whatever) is completely fucked. But if you believe he did it because he actually places conditions on that unconditional love he promised humanity, then you’re extra fucked. Either way, I’m not going to find myself falling to my knees and asking god to help me get through my emotions around this situation. Because as you’ve already told me, there’s a pretty good chance he’s not going to listen.

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