Discerning God's Intentions
Defending his position on abortion, and specifically his absolute opposition to legal abortions for women pregnant due to rape, Indiana Senate candidate Richard Mourdock stated during a debate:
"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, uh, something that God intended to happen.”
God intended the rape victim to get pregnant! That's Mourdock's position.
Not surprisingly, many commentators in criticizing Mourdock suggested that logically God's intentions extended to the rape itself.
This forced Mourdock into issuing a denial, saying:
"God does not want rape, and by no means was I suggesting that he does. Rape is a horrible thing, and for anyone to twist my words otherwise is absurd and sick."
So by Mourdock's reckoning, God has nothing to do with the rape itself, but apparently looks down from Heaven and exclaims:
"Oh looky there - some dude's raping a woman, which is something everyone knows I disapprove of because it is wrong. What a great opportunity to create some life!"
Now that's absurd and sick. And that seems to be Mourdock's view of God.
Somehow, Richard Mourdock thinks he has insight into his God's mind and can discern which events are the results of God's intentions, and which are not. Being that Mourdock has this unique insight, I have a few questions:
- Suppose while getting his victim pregnant, the rapist also infects her and her future child with AIDS? Is that God's intention or not? Ask Richard Mourdock.
- Suppose, as is the case with 50-75% of fertilized eggs (and the fertilization is, of course, God's intention according to Mourdock), spontaneous abortion occurs. Is that spontaneous abortion God's intention or not? Ask Richard Mourdock.
- And if the spontaneous abortion is God's intention, why did God bother even arranging the conception? Ask Richard Mourdock.
- If the spontaneous abortion is not God's intention, why didn't he intervene to overrule this blocking of his intentions? Ask Richard Mourdock.
- Suppose during normal development, the fertilized egg splits into two embryos. Is that God's intention or not? Ask Richard Mourdock.
- Suppose those two embryos become fused during development giving rise to conjoined twins. Is that God's intention or not? Ask Richard Mourdock.
- Suppose a morning-after pill is developed which will successfully prevent most rape victims from getting pregnant and save many of them from nine months of mental anguish, trauma, and unwanted memories of the rape. Is that God's intention or not? Ask Richard Mourdock.
- Suppose that in some jurisdictions the morning-after pill is made promptly and freely available to rape victims, and in other jurisdictions, men like Richard Mourdock deliberately block its availability. Is that God's intention or not? Ask Richard Mourdock.
If Mourdock answers even one of these questions with something like "God's intentions are beyond human understanding" or even a simple "I don't know," then that should be his answer for all of the questions. Because he really does not know.
Frankly, I don't give a damn what Richard Mourdock believes on any of these issues. All I care about is that men like him should not be allowed to impose their religious views on those that do not share them.
Paraphrasing the last Paul Kurtz quotation in the previous article...
No deity will save us from the likes of Richard Mourdock; we must save ourselves.
Bear that in mind when you cast your vote - in any election.