Sharron Angle: God has a plan

Why are we atheists so hard on religion?  Here’s one of many answers: Sharron Angle.

Angle is the Republican candidate for incumbent Harry Reid’s Senate seat (Reid is, of course, the Senate majority leader).

As reported by HuffPo, which has an audioclip from a radio interview with Bill Manders, Angle thinks she has a personal pipeline to God, who’s advising her what He wants to do about abortion:

Angle: I’m pro responsible choice. There is choice to abstain choice to do contraception. There are all kind of good choices.

Manders: Is there any reason at all for an abortion?

Angle: Not in my book.

Manders: So, in other words, rape and incest would not be something?

Angle: You know, I’m a Christian and I believe that God has a plan and a purpose for each one of our lives and that he can intercede in all kinds of situations and we need to have a little faith in many things.

So, to those of you who want us to make nice to religion: you do know, don’t you, that lots of American Christians feel this way?  Are we supposed to look for common ground with such lunacy?

60 Comments

  1. Posted June 29, 2010 at 2:06 pm | Permalink

    She possesses excellent logic concerning other topics too: http://www.ginandtacos.com/2010/06/23/marcel-duchamp-vs-harry-reid/

  2. Posted June 29, 2010 at 2:14 pm | Permalink

    Note that even she won’t answer that one with a straight “No”. She knows full well that it is lunacy. She knows full well that she needs to dress it up in as much God-speak as possible so that no one will see it anymore. Can’t argue with God’s plan, you know.

    Except that we can. If your God’s plan includes rape and incest, then I want nothing to do with your God, or you.

    • TheBrummell
      Posted June 29, 2010 at 4:24 pm | Permalink

      “If your God’s plan includes rape and incest, then I want nothing to do with your God, or you.”

      Full agreement right here. This is excellent.

  3. tm61
    Posted June 29, 2010 at 2:24 pm | Permalink

    Are we supposed to respond to all Christians as if they are in agreement with this belief?

    • Posted June 29, 2010 at 2:38 pm | Permalink

      Oh, I’m sure that many Christians don’t agree with her on the abortion issue. But are they really going to argue against the claim that God has a plan and a purpose for everyone?

      • Stephanie
        Posted June 29, 2010 at 8:02 pm | Permalink

        Not only do they claim “god” has a plan but we have also have free will to deter from this “plan”. My question to Christians is if I get in an auto accident tomorrow, was it due to his “plan” or to my free will to get behind the wheel and drive? When faced with such a question, Christians’ heads usually explode and they have no answer.

        • David Snyder
          Posted June 29, 2010 at 9:03 pm | Permalink

          explode, implode, whatever, I’ll give it a shot! :)

    • Reginald Selkirk
      Posted June 30, 2010 at 7:17 am | Permalink

      Those Christians who are not in agreement should be asked to explain how they determine which events are part of God’s plan and which are not, which verses of the Bible are accurate and which are not, and why they selectively cling to certain aspects of theism while rejecting others.

  4. Sili
    Posted June 29, 2010 at 2:37 pm | Permalink

    God has a plan and a purpose for each one of our lives and that he can intercede in all kinds of situations and we need to have a little faith in many things.

    And yet, somehow the Democratic majority and the black president are not God’s will?

    • Eric MacDonald
      Posted June 29, 2010 at 3:06 pm | Permalink

      Yeah, funny about that, isn’t it? Religion is simply a form of self-assertion. That’s why religious people talk about love a lot. If it was really about love, they wouldn’t have to talk about it.

      • Posted June 29, 2010 at 4:20 pm | Permalink

        Reminds me of that study that found that God’s will curiously followed the changes of opinion of the believer. Who would have thought?

      • Brian
        Posted June 29, 2010 at 4:40 pm | Permalink

        I love that thought. Religion is just a form of self-assertion.

        Every man believes in a god who happens to believe with him.

        • Hempenstein
          Posted June 29, 2010 at 5:57 pm | Permalink

          Indeed. As Ambrose Bierce noted nearly a century ago in The Devil’s Dictionary (1911):

          Piety, n. Reverence for the Supreme Being, based upon His supposed resemblance to man. The pig is taught by sermons and epistles / To think the God of Swine has snout and bristles.

        • Stephanie
          Posted June 29, 2010 at 8:03 pm | Permalink

          Which is exactly why there are over 45,000 different Christian sects.

  5. Eric MacDonald
    Posted June 29, 2010 at 3:01 pm | Permalink

    That’s what I always say. People who think we should make nice to religion don’t seem to know what religious people believe. A good bit of it is childish nonsense, some of it is obscenely cruel, much of it seems simply to be an excuse to intervene in other people’s lives, and the rest, well, it’s not really religion, is it?

    • truthspeaker
      Posted June 29, 2010 at 4:19 pm | Permalink

      But but but … my granmother went to church and she was a nice lady who made cookies so your attacks on Christianity are rude and intolerant, you big mean old atheist!

  6. Kevin
    Posted June 29, 2010 at 3:13 pm | Permalink

    Yes. I’m quite sure that when I raped that 12-year-old girl and got her pregnant, that it was all in Yahweh’s plan. So, as long as I pay my 20 shekels to the father, I’m good, right?

    Are they even listening to themselves?

    And then, of course, there are issues like ectopic pregnancies, not to mention Tay-Sachs, et al.

    Have they ever considered that the ability to be able to abort a fetus might be in ‘The Plan’, too?

    • Tacroy
      Posted June 29, 2010 at 3:49 pm | Permalink

      No, you see, God has a plan and that plan doesn’t involve abortion because Sharron Angle thinks that abortion is icky, unless she or her daughter or one of her relatives or someone she knows really really needs one. God thinks very highly of Sharron, you see. According to Sharron, she’s the most important creature in His plan.

      • Posted June 29, 2010 at 4:20 pm | Permalink

        They’ve always said that Camille Paglia was Ayn Rand on mushrooms. I think Sharron Angle is Ann Coulter on N-methyl-D-aspartic acid.

    • Posted June 29, 2010 at 4:22 pm | Permalink

      Careful, you’re setting yourself up for a quote-mine attack…

    • Posted June 29, 2010 at 4:51 pm | Permalink

      “Have they ever considered that the ability to be able to abort a fetus might be in ‘The Plan’, too?”

      Even when I was still willing to give the possibility of God some credibility, I’ve always wondered about that, specifically in the context of refusing certain medical treatments like vaccines. They believe in an all-powerful, All-knowing and loving God, yet somehow those evil doctors were able to go against his plan for years to develop live-saving vaccines? It just didn’t make sense. Still doesn’t.

  7. Posted June 29, 2010 at 4:19 pm | Permalink

    Sigh. You don’t understand. None of you. The point is, God has a plan for the baby that is the result of the rape or incest. If that baby is a girl and that girl is later raped, then God has a plan for the baby that is the result of that rape. Don’t you see? It’s never about the girl or the woman who has been impregnated against her will, it’s always about the little soul that is inside her body.

    • Brian
      Posted June 29, 2010 at 4:42 pm | Permalink

      Really, I thought it was about treating woman as property and baby-factories. How little I knew.

    • Eric MacDonald
      Posted June 29, 2010 at 4:54 pm | Permalink

      Oh yes I do. I do understand. All that about God’s plans. The religious play the same trick with the dying. God has a plan for all your suffering, so you must just suffer….

      It’s pretty simple when you come to think of it. God has a plan for everything, unless I happen to disagree….. The more I think of it the more I agree. Religion does poison everything….. – and I mean everything.

      As someone quoted over at your place – and made himself your best friend – that was easy! – “I hate him.” Or, I would, if I thought that there was a him, her or it ‘up there’ (where exactly) managing things.

      Imagine saying, of the little girl in Brazil: “God has a purpose for your twins. You probably won’t live to see it, but it’s God’s purpose, so, your duty is just to let God (and the state, the church, and your local Congresswoman, or your stepfather, as the case may be) take over your body.” (Boy, she’s got an angle alright!)

      • Tacroy
        Posted June 29, 2010 at 11:03 pm | Permalink

        Why is it that God’s plans never seem to involve cake? Whenever there is pain, suffering or agony it’s all God’s plan; when there’s cake, it’s just cake. It’s like God never plans for cake, it just kind of happens; he sits there planning and plotting who’s going to get cancer and who’s going to die in a car accident, but never considers who will get cake.

        Seriously God, I demand more pastry in your plans. It’s just unrealistic to never account for it.

        • Eric MacDonald
          Posted June 30, 2010 at 9:21 am | Permalink

          Not altogether true. God’s plans may refer specifically to cake, but wealth, health, happiness all come within god’s plans. Some people even think that god’s plans include winning football games. So, no cake, perhaps, but lots of jam!

      • YourName's NotBruce?
        Posted June 30, 2010 at 11:35 am | Permalink

        God’s plans are very flexible. With every plane crash, tornado, earthquake or mass shooting incident, there are always the survivors that were “saved by god” because “he must have something planned for me.”. All the others who were snuffed out of existence (if they are acknowledged at all by these self-centered, god-saved survivors)were, conversely “taken home” or are “with god now”. Shouldn’t a true believer prefer to be “taken home to be with god” than to be left alive in this sinful, fallen world? Or do they not have enough faith that any world other than this one actually exists?

    • Kevin
      Posted June 30, 2010 at 9:40 am | Permalink

      God’s Plan(TM) only involves male babies…because girls aren’t really people, after all…

      I take it that the male Hasidim still start each day with the prayer thanking god they were not born a woman.

      I can understand why…and my apologies on behalf of my gender.

  8. Neil
    Posted June 29, 2010 at 4:28 pm | Permalink

    I don’t question why we atheists are so hard on these looneys, who are a danger. I do wonder why we are so hard on the wishy-washy theists who are willing to accept science but for some reason also need to believe in some crazy but harmless superstitions.

    • Posted June 29, 2010 at 4:42 pm | Permalink

      I don’t think we’re being so hard on the wishy-washy believers. We’re just talking, you know. But have you never heard a liberal Christian use language that was eerily similar? Never heard a moderate mention as well that God has a personal plan for each of us? I’ve even seen it used to say that they don’t mind we are atheists, because God has plan for us too.

      But here’s the problem: Just because we like their God’s plan better, doesn’t mean it’s suddenly a good argument to invoke his plan. And if we let the moderates get away with using it, how can we honestly criticize the fundamentalists for using it?

    • dave
      Posted June 29, 2010 at 6:24 pm | Permalink

      For one thing, the loonies recruit from the wishy-washy theists, and pretty successfully too.

    • Insightful Ape
      Posted June 29, 2010 at 8:38 pm | Permalink

      To quote Sam Harris: the moderates give the radicals the fig leaf they need to hide behind. Without the Francis Collins’s and Rowan Williams’s of the world, the James Dobsons could not get away with “faith is a virtue” baloney, and they would soon wither away. Belief in the absence of evidence is not a virtue. It is a vice, and a very dangerous one indeed.

      • Neil
        Posted June 29, 2010 at 8:57 pm | Permalink

        First, no one said it is a virtue. Second. where can I find evidence for these assertions?

        • Insightful Ape
          Posted June 29, 2010 at 9:38 pm | Permalink

          Ehm…well, start by a google search on “Rowan Willams”.
          Despite his mild and friendly manners, and the fact that he has no problem with biology, he has been whining bitterly about the declining power of the Anglican church, and has been using every effort to revive attendance. (Not too successfully).
          Which is exactly the point: why would I want to spend my Sunday morning at a place where doctrine without evidence is peddled? And if I am into that kind of thing, why not pick an evangelical church, where the music is better?
          Incidentally, while you and I may not say it is a virtue, doesn’t mean that no one does. Just attend service at a moderate/liberal church this Sunday.

    • Notagod
      Posted June 30, 2010 at 8:09 am | Permalink

      The wish-washies are apparently voting with the loonies to influencing public policy. Superstitions are rarely harmless. Christianity certainly is not harmless.

  9. Michael De Dora
    Posted June 29, 2010 at 4:52 pm | Permalink

    I don’t know any of what we might call “moderate secularists” who have stated there is a chance to work with religious fundamentalists. There is little chance of working with people like Angle, except perhaps on very specific issues not pertaining to religion whatsoever. The point “moderate secularists” make is usually about working with religious moderates.

    • NewEnglandBob
      Posted June 29, 2010 at 5:43 pm | Permalink

      Yeah, someone work with Angle and get her some help to not be an unthinking robot who spews the dogma drummed into her since childhood. Someone help her to become an adult; one who thinks.

    • Josh Slocum
      Posted June 29, 2010 at 6:17 pm | Permalink

      What is a “moderate secularist?” Secularism is an all or nothing proposition. Either you believe society should be based on equality under the law without interference from religious doctrine, or you don’t. Now, of course, we can argue over exactly what constitutes undue religious interference with public policy.

      For the record, I’m not at all moderate about secularism.

      • Eric MacDonald
        Posted June 29, 2010 at 6:22 pm | Permalink

        Neither am I.

    • dave
      Posted June 29, 2010 at 6:26 pm | Permalink

      I have noticed that, when confronted with a Christian, many people will assume they are of the wishy-washy, moderate kind and treat them accordingly. And then they’re totally surpised when said Christian successfully lobbies for creationism and abstinence-only sex-ed in schools.

  10. Thanny
    Posted June 29, 2010 at 5:49 pm | Permalink

    I never understand when pro-choice people (or pro-abortion, which is how I’d describe myself) go off the handle when an anti-abortion person doesn’t allow exceptions for rape.

    If they did make an exception, then they would be admitting that they don’t care about the fetus at all, and are only interesting in controlling the reproductive tract of women. If you are against abortion, but make exceptions for rape, you are not being reasonable. You’re being disingenuous.

    By making no exceptions, they show that they believe abortion is murder, period. They are wrong, but they are sincere and consistent.

    It’s somewhat like fundamentalist Christians versus fuzzy Christians. The fundies are dead wrong, but take their religion seriously, and agree in principle that it’s falsifiable.

    • Reginald Selkirk
      Posted June 30, 2010 at 7:27 am | Permalink

      It is a dilemma, neither answer is acceptable.

      To not allow abortions in case of rape may be consistent, but is morally monstrous. Consistency may be a virtue, but moral monstrousness is not. This view calls for the punishment of a victim of a crime, by forcing her to carry for 9 months the fetus of her rapist, after which she can choose to raise the child of her rapist, or to give up her own child. If you don’t find that objectionable merely because it is consistent, then I would say that you value consistency way too highly.

      To allow abortion in cases of rape, but not elsewhen reveals that the true concern of the anti-abortionist is not the rights of a zygote, but to punish women for behaviour they perceive to be sinful.

  11. SLC
    Posted June 29, 2010 at 6:18 pm | Permalink

    I also understand that Ms. Angle is into Scientology.

  12. Edwardson
    Posted June 29, 2010 at 8:18 pm | Permalink

    The all-good, all-loving Christian god planned all the rapes, tortures, diseases, murders? And Sharron worships this monster? Since I can’t see this Lord of hers, I think lock her up instead.

  13. mike m
    Posted June 29, 2010 at 9:25 pm | Permalink

    Keith Olbermann named Mrs. Angle the worst person in the world for June 29 for this one.

    http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/3036677/#38008611

    Keith’s commentary on the senate candidate in Nevada is worth watching.

  14. Microraptor
    Posted June 29, 2010 at 10:28 pm | Permalink

    Anyone else think of the intro to the new Battlestar Galactica every time they hear some Christian talking about how God has a plan?

  15. dallila
    Posted June 29, 2010 at 11:46 pm | Permalink

    After years of living among those of that mindset, I’m rather certain that if Angle was confronted with the illogic of her comments, she’d say the rape or incest was not part of “the plan” — that part was the devil at work. For some reason, “the plan” often calls for god to stand by and do nothing; but then intervene and work things out for good….but only sometimes. His ways are so mysterious you see.

  16. Matt Penfold
    Posted June 30, 2010 at 7:11 am | Permalink

    Angle’s mindset infects a many otherwise intelligent people.

    Here in the UK I just read an article by the head of Royal College of General Practitioners in which he explains what happened during the July 7th bombings in London. He was at a meeting at the British Medical Association and the bomb that exploded on a bus did outside the BMA. Much of the article is a decent factual account of how he and his colleagues helped the survivors and I have no doubt their actions that day saved lives.

    The problems comes at the end of the article, when he says as a believer in god he considers it a miracle that the bomb went of where it did. He seems oblivious to the fact what he is actually saying is god cared enough to make sure the bomb went off near where there was immediate medical help but did not care enough to stop the bomb going off at all.

    • Posted June 30, 2010 at 7:54 am | Permalink

      That’s not a miracle, that’s a lucky coincidence. A miracle is when the bomb would go off, and everybody in the blast zone got off with no more than some bruises or scratches. A miracle is when the explosives spontaneously turn into jelly and the bomb didn’t go off at all.

      People have really lowered their standards for miracles these days.

      • Kevin
        Posted June 30, 2010 at 9:47 am | Permalink

        I’ll disagree with your assessment regarding the lowered standards of miracles. ALL of the so-called miracles attributed to Jesus are of “the dog ate my homework” variety.
        * Where’s the wine? We drank it.
        * Loaves and fishes? We ate it?
        * The healed sick? Dead.
        * Lazarus? Dead again.
        * The risen Jesus? Invisible in heaven…but trust us, they all REALLY happened.

        High levels of credulity are the sine qua non of all theists and have been for millennia.

        • Posted June 30, 2010 at 9:52 am | Permalink

          That just proves that the standards have been falling for a lot longer. The columns of fire, parting seas, crumbling walls and stationary suns of the Old Testament are a lot more impressive than some slight of hand with wine and bread.

          Of course, those are equally unverifiable, but you have to admit, that if they were to happen now, they’d be a heck of a lot more impressive than what this good doctor considers a miracle.

          • Kevin
            Posted June 30, 2010 at 11:15 am | Permalink

            Oh yeah. A wall of fire between my and my enemies would be a pretty cool trick.

            In fact, if god wanted to prove which side he was on in the Yahweh/Allah debate, he could probably go ahead and make the losers burst into flames any time now.

            Waiting…nope, don’t see any….still waiting…nothing…

            Maybe it is Quetzalcoatl after all?

  17. Notagod
    Posted June 30, 2010 at 9:15 am | Permalink

    According to Sharron Angle at least one of the christian gods is not above using rape and incest as fertilization tools.

    Manders: So, in other words, rape and incest would not be something?

    Angle: You know, I’m a Christian and I believe that God has a plan and a purpose for each one of our lives and that he can intercede in all kinds of situations and we need to have a little faith in many things.

    Seriously Sharron Angle, is that really the best your christian god can do? I suppose we could do better without It, don’t you?

  18. Posted June 30, 2010 at 10:05 am | Permalink

    Oh come on — conservative asswipes like that only comprises about 50% of the US population. Stop attacking a strawman!

    /sarcasm

  19. Reginald Selkirk
    Posted June 30, 2010 at 12:16 pm | Permalink

    God has a plan, and it calls for Brazil to win over either Germany or Argentina.

  20. Kirth Gersen
    Posted June 30, 2010 at 4:43 pm | Permalink

    The closest thing to a sane response to this sort of nonsense that I’ve ever heard from a Christian was this old verse:

    “Who claims to know the mind of God
    Is engaged in the Devil’s work.”

  21. justsearching
    Posted July 1, 2010 at 2:27 am | Permalink

    She was trying to indicate that her great good God could bring about redemption and good things even out of pregnancies resulting from rape or incest. She was not directly saying “God plans for person X to be raped, and person Y to experience incest.” I reject her reasons for not allowing abortion, and I also think allowing terrible things to happen is equally repugnant as planning for them to happen, but I would suggest that most Christians see a big difference between the two.

  22. Carneades
    Posted July 6, 2010 at 9:34 pm | Permalink

    Yes, christians don’t use much common sense. There is supposed to be a separation of church and state, yet our politicians have a long recorded history of using their personal religious views in order to shape government policy. The question should not be about whether or not an individual approves of a policy, but rather whether others rights are being infringed upon by the government. Banning people from an abortion, whether rape is involved or not, should not be a decision that the government or any single politician should be able to make.

  23. Peter Olsen
    Posted August 29, 2010 at 6:53 pm | Permalink

    God should be thankful that He has Sharron Angle to give Him advice on issues that He may not understand.


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