HURRICANE SANDY, RAPE, and GOD’S WILL?
While the eastern part of Canada and the U.S. await the ravages of Hurricane Sandy we are reminded that what affects the people in these regions affects us all. We are all connected as everything is connected, Global Warming, Climate Change, Politics and Religion.
I was raised in the very bosom of Christian evangelical fundamentalism. I know that the current vicious weather patterns of Climate Change will be regarded as “God’s Will” by this very large group that is increasingly trying to take over The US and Canada. They believe that whatever happens is “God’s will”. However, before a live audience last Tuesday, Indiana Republican for US Senate, Richard Mourdock said something so bizarre that even I was taken aback. He said: “Life is that gift from God. And I think when life begins in that horrible situation of rape that it is something God intended to happen”.
And Mourdock has not retracted this statement. Nor has Mitt Romney, US presidential candidate, disowned him. This puts both Mitt Romney and Richard Mourdock on the same intellectual level as their Republican Senate candidate from Missouri Todd Akin, who believes that women can automatically shut down sperm from entering their fallopian tubes when raped if they didn’t really want to be raped, that is, if their rape was “legitimate”. But I find Richard Mourdock’s attempted explanation the day after the debate the most revealing. What exactly did Mourdock say at his press conference the following day in his attempt to explain his position more fully?
He said, and I quote: “I abhor rape. Certainly I did not intend to suggest that God wants rape, that God pushes people to rape.”
No? Fundamentalist Christians are usually well versed in the Old Testament of the Bible. The book of Numbers recounts how Moses, after defeating the city of Midian, instructed his commanders:
“So kill all the male children. Kill also all the women who have slept with a man. Spare the lives only of the young girls who have not slept with a man and keep them for yourselves”. (Numbers 31:17-18)
And where did Moses get his instructions from? Read on:
“Moses and Eleazar the priest did as YAHWEH had ordered Moses.” (Numbers 31:31-35)
And who is Yahweh of the Old Testament? God, that’s who.
The Old Testament’s stories of the rape of women and little girls (and there are others, equally as shocking) are part and parcel of Christian and Jewish tradition of recognizing the laws of the Old Testaments, laws that are also recognized by other patriarchal religions. My thesis is that this Biblical background is exactly where fundamentalist men take their cues on women and climate. The earth, like women, is to be controlled; nature bent to men’s will. If the earth and all life on it suffer and even disappears, it doesn’t matter, this is “God’s will”.
And need I remind anybody that our prime minister is also an evangelical fundamentalist Christian? And so are many in his cabinet? And that Prime Minister Harper intends to sneak around his promise not to open the abortion debate by letting his ministers do it? Will anybody be surprised when the abortion issue winds up in the Supreme Court of Canada? And guess who will be waiting there for the issue to appear? Why, the right wing judges that Harper has appointed which will give them the majority on the bench. And guess how the right wing judges will vote? They will vote in “God’s will.”
Extreme weather patterns are the result of collective decisions made by the banks, corporations, militaries, the oil and gas industry and university and government “sell outs”. When fundamentalist religions bless these crimes and deem them “God’s will” they seek to numb us and dumb us down to accept any imaginable atrocity brought about by the sexist, racist and economic thievery actions of men who have lied, cheated, and bribed their way into power. Women everywhere are in the most severe jeopardy from these men (and their female clones). We must resist and find the strength to weather the storms. For our children’s sake. And we will.