What does a supreme being have to do to stay out of the headlines these days? God has people on the right and left blaming him for oil that is spewing into the Gulf of Mexico.
What does a supreme being have to do to stay out of the headlines these days?
God has people on the right and left blaming him for oil that is spewing into the Gulf of Mexico.
First Texas Gov. Rick Perry - from the comforts of his $10,000 a month rental home in Austin - said that God caused the British Petroleum well to explode.
Therefore, according to his logic, there was no reason to punish any oil companies or even consider limiting drilling offshore.
Now Ted Turner - who once called Christianity a "religion for losers" - believes he heard God's voice in the explosion.
On Monday, CNN interviewed the man who founded the network about his ideas on the massive oil spill that still isn't under control almost three weeks after the initial explosion that killed 11 people and left oil gushing into the water.
Over the years, Turner appears to have seen the light - or at least become less dim.
In the interview Monday, he said he was not "really religious," but he does consider himself "somewhat religious" now.
Apparently someone who is somewhat religious is able to interpret the thoughts of God.
"He's sending us a message," Turner said. He said that the explosion in the Gulf "could be" God's way of telling us not to drill offshore anymore.
But God's will - as expressed by Turner - extends beyond petroleum products.
"I'm just wondering if God is telling us he doesn't want us to drill offshore," Turner said. "And right before that we had that coal mine disaster in West Virginia where we lost 29 miners."
He went on to say that it seems to him that God doesn't like people messing with his mountains.
"Maybe the Lord's tired of having the mountains of West Virginia, the tops knocked off of them so they can get more coal," Turner said on behalf of the Almighty. "I think maybe we ought to just leave the coal in the ground and go with solar and wind power and geo-thermals where it's applicable."
That sounds great. If only we were all billionaires who had no concern over exponential increases in our utility costs we could live in a perfect world.
Unfortunately, Turner is confusing God's ideas with his own.
It isn't that surprising.
Turner once said of himself, "If only I had a little humility, I'd be perfect."
He also once predicted a fast-approaching end of the human race.
"I'd say the chances are about 50-50 that humanity will be extinct or nearly extinct within 50 years. Weapons of mass destruction, disease, I mean this global warming is scaring the living daylights out of me," he said.
That's right. Weapons of mass destruction and global pandemics are bad. But what really frightens Turner is global warming.
The Rev. Jerry Falwell might have been right when he said, "I feel most people who claim they've heard God's voice are eating too much pizza before they go to bed at night, and it's really an intestinal disorder, not a revelation."
I don't know what Turner eats for a midnight snack, but I do know what it sounds like when people try to use God to support their own arguments.
Kent Bush is publisher of the Augusta (Kan.) Gazette.
The opinions in this article are not necessarily those of the newspaper.