It is 2012’s “October Surprise,” an unwelcome “Act of God.” One of history’s largest storms crashes the mid-Atlantic coast preceding the election just two days before Halloween, scaring the hell out of fearless New Jersey and downstate New York The 900-mile “frankenstorm” is named “Sandy,” which ironically relocates trillions of tons of sand, resculpturing the Jersey Shore forever.
The monster storm not only impacts the lives of millions in its path, but a nail-biting national election – or so it seems at landfall (although post-election surveys appraise Sandy’s bearing irrelevant to Obama’s triumph). The hurricane tips the scales slightly, yet not decisively.
National focus, however, is directed towards the disaster. Barack Obama steps up to the plate, hits a homerun. The eyes of the nation see a President doing his job par excellent in contrast to his predecessor botching Katrina. But standing beside Obama is the Republican Party’s de facto standard-bearer, Chris Christie, who praises the President profusely without party consideration.
Fundamentalists see both natural and man-made events as providential. All are “God’s will” if permitted by sovereignty to occur. Events are only “not in the will of God’s” if never happening. (A bear crapping in the woods is “God’s will,” and a bear not crapping in the woods is “not God’s will.” Go figure.)
For example, the Holocaust, although history’s worst genocide, is “God’s will,” because it paves the way for Jews to return to a reborn Israel, fulfilling prophecy related to the Second Coming of Christ and the Millennial Reign where the “chosen” rule over the “non-chosen” for 1,000 years. “Thy will be done.” Although 55 million die in the process, it’s a small price to pay, oh bliss.
Even the existence of Satan is “God’s will” determined by the fact he does exist (in their theology). Thus, evil is God’s will because it happens, and good many times isn’t if it doesn’t. Sovereignty is consigned to existence rather than an all-encompassing standard.
Which brings us to the present day. America’s religious right (the “base” of the Republican Party) still believes in divine intervention. Thus, 9/11 was God’s judgment on America for feminism, promiscuity, ACLU, abortionists, gays, liberalism and leftist secular humanism.
Katrina was God’s wrath for New Orleans’ planned gay pride parade and Planned Parenthood (legalized abortion).
By the same token, Sandy was God’s intervention which threw the election to Obama. One might further argue Obama is God’s judgment on America for whatever collective infraction. But the hypocrisy is flagrant. If Sandy’s winds had blown the other candidate to victory, imagine how the religious right would praise God for intervening on the nation’s behalf.
They prayed earnestly for “God’s will to be done in this election.” Anyhow, I received emails and live-conversation to that effect from evangelical friends over the country who added, “And God is for Romney to be President – to take America back to God and greatness. Loren, you’ll see how God is going to make Romney the next President. We know because God told us.”
I yawned, “Yeah, right,” igniting the expected “righteous indignation.”
So, when the results came in Election Night (after the initial shock), their anthem had miraculously changed tunes: “Americans voted against God and are going to pay for it. They’ll get what they deserve: disasters, hardship, poverty, and a weaker and more immoral nation.” Gun sales have gone through the roof since November 6; it’s been drummed in rightwing minds Democrats are about to confiscate their precious guns and suspend the Second Amendment. (Another yawn)
Their barefaced hypocrisy is evident, but who sees it besides critical thinkers? If it’s NOT “God’s will” that Obama is President, why is he there?