I’ve been thinking, ever since I wrote a response to that dreadfully illogical, dishonest, hypocritical document published by the church to explain its opposition to gay marriage, about struggles framed as a battle between the forces of god and the forces of who or whatever.
The thing is, god so often loses.
Several apt examples drawn from Mormon history:
1. God could not keep his people safe in Ohio, Missouri or Illinois. Mormons were persecuted, raped and murdered--and God couldn’t or didn’t stop it.
2. God could not make Utah sufficiently self-reliant that the church could exist without the trade and support of the US federal government, resulting in a showdown between the US government and the church over polygamy.
3. God could not influence the hearts and minds of the rest of the country enough that people would allow Utah to become a US state unless the church renounced polygamy.
Or look at Jewish history. God couldn’t or didn’t do much about the destruction of the temple, the diaspora, or the holocaust.
Or look at Catholic history. If it was the one true church, God should have been able to do something to stop Martin Luther and John Calvin. He should have been able to prevent the accession of truly immoral popes like the various Medicis and Borgias.
Mormons believe that god is omnipotent, but I’d like to see some serious evidence of that. When you look at what god actually manages to do, how good he is at furthering his agenda, the claim of omnipotence seems like the pathetic blustering braggadocio of a schoolyard bully. Seriously: according to Mormon scripture, God’s work and glory is “to bring to pass the eternal life of man,” a state that requires people to become Mormon. But when you look at how long the Mormon church has been around, and how few people actually join the Mormon church, well, the numbers show that god is pretty damn lousy at achieving his work and his glory.
Truth be told, god is a big fucking prurient loser. The only way to argue otherwise is to look at history after it happens, and decide AFTER the fact that whatever happened was god’s will. The civil rights movement? Oh, despite the resistance to it among christians, that was actually god’s will. The defeat of Nazi Germany? Well, despite the fact that it took a really long time and almost didn’t happen, and despite the fact that the Nazis’ victims numbered in the MILLIONS, it was actually god’s will that that happen. God didn’t have particularly strong feelings about other genocides, however. Cambodia, for instance--he wasn’t too anxious one way or the other about that one. And he stayed pretty neutral in Vietnam, sorta like the Red Cross, except without the part where he actually dispensed aid and comfort. Even now he ignores Africa as much as all the G8 Nations--the suffering of that entire continent isn't something he will ask his followers to redress, 'cause it doesn't involve his major obsession: letting white guys police how other people approach sex and relationships. And the conflict in Palestine/Israel seems to have him stymied, too. Especially given all he did to create that particular problem, you’d think he’d work a little harder to solve it--at least, he’d work harder if he wasn’t A) so feeble and B) such an asshole.
God is going to lose the battle over gay marriage, which is as it should be: god should lose any battle where his edicts and decrees are in opposition to the full development of human potential for love, compassion, intelligence and wisdom. Recognizing gay relationships by allowing homosexuals to marry is a positive step in developing that potential.
Now, there are some people who will say that because I am in favor of gay marriage, I am a tool of Satan. But that’s like calling me a servant of Voldemort or an agent of the Cylon Empire. Satan is a metaphor for evil, not an actual person. DUH.
And in return, I say that people who are opposed to gay marriage are not tools of Satan--they are just tools.
Opposing gay marriage makes people stupid, embarrassingly so. It requires them to resort to illogic and fear in order to fight something that isn’t going to hurt them. Which isn’t to say that opponents of gay marriage won’t have to change when it's finally accepted across the globe: they will be forced to join those who have seen the light and admit that the earth is round, that the earth orbits the sun and not the other way around, that other races are not genetically inferior to whites, that slavery is not a divinely sanctioned institution, that kings do not rule by divine decree. And that will indeed be painful for those who resist, but in that good way that maturing spiritually, emotionally and intellectually always is.
Not only that, but opposing gay marriage and taking the Lord’s name in vain by saying that he opposes it too just helps to show what a pathetic loser the god these bigots worship really is. You think they’d learn the lesson of the face-off between Jehovah and Ba’al and find themselves a god who can actually get something done. But no. They’re content to worship the puny, inept idol they’ve created in their own image, confident that one day, he’ll show up and reward them for being as small-minded, bigoted and cruel as he is. Whereas they’ve got their reward all along: they are as much like their nasty loser god as its possible to be.