In a Godless Universe the Sandy Hook Elementary School Shooting is What We'd Expect Would Happen

Even though I'm a godless atheist I say this. Don't quote me though, at least not without my explanation. I'm not speaking about a godless ethic, that supposedly atheists do these kinds of deeds, and/or that they have no ethical standards to condemn such terrible senseless acts. I do have an ethic and I do condemn these kinds of deeds. That's a topic for another time so don't derail what I'm saying with irrelevant comments. What I'm saying here is something different.

People are not too good at comparing hypotheses but that's what we must do. Most often in our debates we latch on to a theory and seek to confirm it, ignoring competing ones. It's called confirmation bias, and psychological studies show we all have a strong tendency or bias toward our pet theories. We don't give competing theories the time of day. We ignore them as false and sometimes even ludicrous.

But if we compare the godless hypothesis that there is no god with the God hypothesis that there is an all powerful, perfectly good, all knowing deity, it's patently obvious that the best explanation for this horrible tragedy is the godless one. Now believers may think they have good reasons to accept the God hypothesis anyway, but this tragedy is not one of them to say the least. Let me briefly explain.

In a godless universe shit happens without rhyme nor reason. Life is predatory from the ground up. Creatures eat one another by trapping unsuspecting victims in unusual ways, launching surprise attacks out of the blue, and hunting in packs by overpowering prey with brute force and numbers. Sometimes a creature just goes wacko for no reason at all. Humans are not exempt. Sometimes the wiring in our brains goes haywire and we snap. We too are violent and we inherited this trait from our animal predecessors. We also show care and concern to our kith and kin but we can lash out in horrific ways at what we consider an uncaring world.

In a universe where there is an all powerful, perfectly good, all knowing God this tragedy is not what we would expect to happen. There were innocent children who were brutally massacred. We would not expect that after praying the Lord's prayer to a loving heavenly father that such a deity would allow this to happen, just as we would not expect a father in that school to sit by and do nothing while the gunman killed his children.

What could a loving heavenly father have done? There are tons of things. Just have the gunman's brakes fail on the way so he would crash his car into a telephone pole and die. If God knew the man would one day kill these people then he could have killed him in a thousand unsuspecting ways like this. He had twenty years to do it. God could have snapped his omnipotent fingers causing the man to have massive amnesia such that he wouldn't know who he is, or what he was going to do with his guns that morning. God could have caused his guns to misfire if nothing else. God did nothing that a loving father would have done.

When comparing these two hypotheses the God hypothesis fails and the godless hypothesis prevails, hands down, no question, no ifs ands or buts about it.


Anonymous said...

The godless thesis also provides the best chance for solutions. In our society we regularly segregate predators. We take away their fangs so to speak. Since there is no god to interceded it is incumbent on us to ensure as much as humanly possible that the raptors have their fangs pulled. If god lives then we can always fall back on some idea that we don't have to do anything other than pray or pass new laws that allows more reliance on a god. The godless thesis says no one else will fix things no matter how moral we try to live. The godless thesis also says that freedom is conferred by "The People" and constitutional rights are not inalienable in the sense that The People cannot alter or restrict those rights in the best interests of all. It is only when divorce law and the son-god that we will have the capability to make laws that will not become a god unto themselves.