Wednesday, May 12, 2010

God is Busy

Read this on another site and in light of what is going on in my life right now just had to repost.

"A United States Marine was attending some college courses between assignments. He had completed missions in Iraq and Afghanistan. One of the courses had a professor who was an avowed atheist, and a member of the ACLU.

One day the professor shocked the class when he came in. He looked to the ceiling and flatly stated, "GOD if you are real then I want you to knock me off this platform. I'll give you exactly 15 minutes." The lecture room fell silent. You could hear a pin drop. Ten minutes went by and the professor proclaimed, "Here I am GOD, I'm still waiting." It got down to the last couple of minutes when the Marine got out of his chair, went up to the professor, and cold-cocked him; knocking him off the platform. The professor was out cold. The Marine went back to his seat and sat there, silently. The other students were shocked and stunned, and sat there looking on in silence. The professor eventually came to, noticeably shaken, looked at the Marine and asked, "What in the world is the matter with you? Why did you do that?"

The Marine calmly replied, "GOD was too busy today protecting American soldiers who are protecting your right to say stupid stuff and act like an idiot. So He sent me."

The classroom erupted in cheers!

End of email

It sure hits all the talking points, doesn't it? Military, academia, atheism, and violence as an answer to difficult questions.

I recently got an email from a student of mine. She was concerned that since I teach a Philosophy class, I would be an atheist, and she was prepared to either drop my class or "turn me in." Apparently, she had a Psychology professor in the past that asked her to examine her beliefs, and it made her very uncomfortable. So now she's on a mission to root out atheists in academia and make sure they all end up losing their jobs.

...and a response... (I particularly like this well stated response)

The story is messed up in many ways.

First, as mentioned by others, the violent act is at odds with the ideals (notice I said "ideals") that are supposedly espoused by Christians and other religionists.

Second, it makes "GOD" look like an incompetent boob, because: (1) he can't multi-task by handling an atheist professor while simultaneously protecting "American" soldiers (forget about non-American soldiers); (2) He doesn't do a very good job of protecting soldiers; and (3) if he really wanted to protect soldiers, he should have prevented the war from breaking out in the first place.

Third, it doesn't pass the smell test. These types of stories all have the same feel to them. I call it the "Reader's Digest feel" because they always sound like something that's a bit too Norman Rockwellish and cartoonish to be true. If anyone had really punched out a professor with enough force to knock him out cold, the professor would be needing serious hospitalization. This story has the professor coming to like something out of the TV shows or cartoons where people are getting hit on the head to knock them unconscious (like it's some kind of on/off switch) and they always come to with nothing more than a headache. It doesn't work that way. When enough force is applied to knock someone unconscious, things like paralysis, broken jaws, broken noses, fractured cheekbones, concussions, etc., are the typical results. The Marine would have been looking at criminal and civil charges.

Finally, if the American soldiers are supposedly "over there" protecting the First Amendment, why the hell is the Marine using violence back home to render it meaningless??"

I recently learned that my youngest daughter has breast cancer. She is Mormon. The whole ward is praying and fasting tomorrow, in her honor. I hope their god is not too busy to listen and act.