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My Take: CNN readers' 7 answers to 'Where was God in Aurora?'
A man pauses at a memorial of crosses near the movie theater in Aurora, Colorado, the scene of last week's mass shooting.
July 26th, 2012
02:49 PM ET

My Take: CNN readers' 7 answers to 'Where was God in Aurora?'

Editor's Note: Stephen Prothero, a Boston University religion scholar and author of "The American Bible: How Our Words Unite, Divide, and Define a Nation," is a regular CNN Belief Blog contributor.

By Stephen Prothero, Special to CNN

Over the last few days, CNN’s Belief Blog has received more than 10,000 responses to its question, “Where was God in Aurora?”

The underlying concern here has vexed theologians for centuries: How can evil happen in a world that is lorded over by a good and all-powerful God? As CNN's readers struggled to make sense of God's presence (or absence) in the Aurora, Colorado, massacre, I counted seven different answers to this question:

1. There is no God.

Self-professed atheists may make up only 2% of the U.S. population, but they are extraordinarily active online, and on CNN's Belief Blog. A commenter who identified as Jason spoke for them when he wrote, “Where was God? He was where he has always been. Nowhere because God does not exist.” Bob Dobbs agreed: “God is imaginary. The question is moot.”

Many in this camp also quoted the ancient Greek philosopher (and skeptic) Epicurus:

Is God willing to prevent evil, but not able?
Then he is not omnipotent.
Is he able, but not willing?
Then he is malevolent.
Is he both able and willing?
Then whence cometh evil?
Is he neither able nor willing?
Then why call him God?

2. Don’t blame God, blame Satan.

Many theists on the site described the world as a battleground between God, who is working for good, and Satan, who is working for evil. “As long as Satan is loose to promote evil, bad things will happen to good people,” wrote kat.

3. Don’t blame God, blame us.

Probably the most common response from Christian commenters was that evil is a result of free will. Do we really want to be “puppets” or “robots"? Of course not. So God has given us the will to choose either evil or good.

Watch: Survivor of massacre says he forgives gunman

Believer summed up this position well:

"It's been said that the only thing we can truly give God is our will because its the only thing we possess that is uniquely ours. Everything else was given to us by him, and is, in effect, not ours to give in the first place. As such, and despite his omnipotence, he cannot intervene. . . .  He only possesses power where power can be possessed - and controlling our actions is not within that realm."

Here Deborah also chimed in: “This act of violence was not God's will. I get so tried of people blaming God for evil acts. Humans of their own free will do evil things.”

4. God was behind the massacre, and it was just.

Some believers saw God’s righteous hand in the Aurora massacre, inflicting a just punishment on a wayward nation now run by secular liberals rather than conservative Christians.

Lenny wrote:

"We as a country have been telling God to go away. We told him to get off our currency, get out of our schools, get out of our Pledge of Allegiance, take your Ten Commandments out of our courthouses, get those Bibles out of hotels and no graduation ceremonies in our churches. How can we expect God to give us his blessing and his protection if we demand that he leave us alone?"

Read: The man who made Aurora’s iconic crosses

Rep. Louie Gohmert, R-Texas, took a similar tack in an appearance on the Heritage Foundation's "Istook Live" radio show, laying the blame at the feet of a nation that has turned away from its God:

"You know, when people say, where was God in all of this? Well, you know, . . . we’ve threatened high school graduation participants that if they use God’s name that they’re going to be jailed, we had a principal of a school, and a superintendent or a coach down in Florida that were threatened with jail because they said the blessing at a voluntary off campus dinner. I mean, that kind of stuff… where is God? Where, where? What have we done with God? We told him that we don’t want him around. I kind of like his protective hand being present."

5. God was present at the massacre but with the victims, not the perpetrator

One classic claim in the Abrahamic tradition of Jews, Christians and Muslims is that God is with those who suffer - the poor and the oppressed. Some commenters saw God’s miraculous hand in the midst of this suffering, not causing it to happen but bringing it to an end.  “This may sound crazy,” wrote Diana, “but I believe God had a hand in that the gun jammed so that more people weren’t killed.”

CNN’s Belief Blog: The faith angles behind the biggest stories

The most common claim in this category came from peacemaker, who wrote, “God is and was with the victims and s/he is weeping.” In a more explicitly Christian vein, Lauren wrote: “He was there in the theater, pierced by bullets with the victims. He was scarred by the shrapnel. His eyes were scorched with gas and then burned with tears as He mourned alongside the broken.”

6. Which God?

Some commenters interrogated the question itself, arguing that the knots it twists us into are rooted in what commenter Ego_Death called “a false idea of what God is.” After all, the problem of evil in a world ruled by a sovereign and good God only presents itself if you posit one personal God who is both good and all-powerful.

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Referring to "our idea of a human-like personal God" as "an ancient myth," Northstar56 wrote:

"But just because this kind of God does not appear to exist, does not mean that God, in fact, does not exist. I think many have developed a more mature and realistic perspective . . . in which God exists as a pure fundamental consciousness or state from which all of existence arises. This God does not control anything, but rather continues to perpetually emanate as reality . . . God was present in all of the victims, and everyone else. God was present in the killer as well. The tragedy is that the killer's awareness was so distorted and twisted that he could not see or be aware of the intrinsic priceless value of every person he gunned down."

Evoking something more akin to the “watchmaker” God of the deists, who makes the world and its laws and then refuses to intervene in its operation, Norm wrote: “God is not involved in our everyday mundane activities. How arrogant of man to think he’s the center of the universe and has God’s constant attention and every action is ‘God’s will.’”

Taking a different tack, "varun" invoked the teachings of the beloved Hindu scripture the Bhagavad Gita:

"Only the followers of Semitic religions have problem with understanding this - because they do not believe in rebirth and karma. As soon as you introduce these two concepts into (the) picture along with the eternal indestructible soul (something Semitic religions do believe in), everything makes sense. Read Bhagavad-Gita and everything would be as clear as daylight."

7. Who knows? It’s a mystery

Agnosticism is a rare virtue in the United States nowadays, but there were a few commenters who admitted to something less than the absolute certainty exhibited by atheists and evangelicals alike. "The answer," wrote Terry, "is we don't know where he was." Fluffy the Gerbil of Doom saw this "God works in mysterious ways" move as “ultimate cop-out/rationalization,” but I am not so sure.

In September 1862, in the midst of a much greater American tragedy, Abraham Lincoln wrote a private “Meditation on the Divine Will” in which he struggled to make sense of what God was doing in the Civil War. He later reworked those reflections into his second inaugural address, one of the greatest speeches in American history.

Surveying the corpse-ridden landscape of North and South, Lincoln observed, “Both read the same Bible, and pray to the same God; and each invokes His aid against the other.” Clearly there was little good in slavery, he reasoned, yet equally clearly God was not giving a swift and sure victory to the Union. So what was God up to? In the end, Lincoln had to admit he did not know. Or, as he put it, “The Almighty has His own purposes.”

I suppose this is in a sense a “cop-out,” but it is a humble one, uninfected by the absolute certainties (either pro- or anti-God) that have shed more blood on earth than agnosticism ever will. It is also a classic example of answering a question with a question: What is God doing with this war? Who knows?

“Josephpusateri” also answered our question with a question. His comment was in my view the best of the hundreds I read, so I will end with it here:

"Oh, the blindness of such a question... as if only theodicy was a relevant question in white, American suburbs. Where is God in Afghanistan? Where is God in Gaza? Where is God in Syria? . . . Where is God, indeed."

The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of Stephen Prothero.

- CNN Belief Blog contributor

Filed under: Atheism • Belief • Christianity • Culture wars • Devil • Ethics • God • Violence

soundoff (4,074 Responses)
  1. Drinky Crow

    I would be curious as to where Prothero gets his 2% figure for the number of atheists in this country. I live in a hick town in Florida, and at least half the people that I know are atheist or agnostic.

    Now, here is my problem with the so-called "Free will christians"; as much as they claim that their god gives us the free will to decide how we should lead our lives, they will all tell you that you are going to burn for all of eternity in a lake of fire if you exercise that free will and don't believe in their sky fairy. Sorry, christians, I don't believe in god or the lake of fire scenario, so your threats are pretty hollow.

    July 27, 2012 at 9:29 am |
    • UrAnIdiot

      It's just more dribble from the section of this country who are blind and ignorant.

      They can't handle the truth and science.

      July 27, 2012 at 9:33 am |
    • Sky Wizard

      LOL
      "dribble"

      July 27, 2012 at 10:12 am |
  2. Sky Wizard

    Leave me alone – im prepping another shooter

    July 27, 2012 at 9:28 am |
  3. Obvious

    My God was the one who made the gun jam. My God was the one who gave folks in that apartment building patience so they did not call the police over the loud music he left playing until after he was caught and they were able to proceed safely. My God was the one who gave the officer in the back of the theater wisdom to notice this SWAT team member was here way to early and dressed incorrectly..therefore stopping him and eventually arresting him (the suspect). My God WAS there. My god has been there all along...when the hospital was built (about a mile from the theater...coincidence?). My God is more than we understand.

    July 27, 2012 at 9:26 am |
    • Sky Wizard

      My god, shut up already

      July 27, 2012 at 9:29 am |
    • SunGod

      Nuh Uh it mas the Muslim god, that did not yours or the chrisitan god, or Zuse the father of gods, or the easter bunny, wait wait it was Zombie Jesus

      July 27, 2012 at 9:30 am |
    • lou

      your god seems to get to places he's needed awfully late

      July 27, 2012 at 9:31 am |
    • UrAnIdiot

      You are an idi ot and completely blind –

      Top Ten Signs You're a Christian in Name Only
      10 – You vigorously deny the existence of thousands of gods claimed by other religions, but feel outraged when someone denies the existence of yours.
      9 – You feel insulted and "dehumanized" when scientists say that people evolved from other life forms, but you have no problem with the Biblical claim that we were created from dirt.
      8 – You laugh at polytheists, but you have no problem believing in a Triune God.
      7 – Your face turns purple when you hear of the "atrocities" attributed to Al lah, but you don't even flinch when hearing about how God/Jehovah slaughtered all the babies of Egypt in "Exodus" and ordered the elimination of entire ethnic groups in "Joshua" including women, children, and trees!
      6 – You laugh at Hindu beliefs that deify humans, and Greek claims about gods sleeping with women, but you have no problem believing that the Holy Spirit impregnated Mary, who then gave birth to a man-god who got killed, came back to life and then ascended into the sky.
      5 – You are willing to spend your life looking for little loopholes in the scientifically established age of Earth (few billion years), but you find nothing wrong with believing dates recorded by Bronze Age tribesmen sitting in their tents and guessing that Earth is a few generations old.
      4 – You believe that the entire population of this planet with the exception of those who share your beliefs – though excluding those in all rival sects – will spend Eternity in an infinite Hell of Suffering. And yet consider your religion the most "tolerant" and "loving."
      3 – While modern science, history, geology, biology, and physics have failed to convince you otherwise, some id iot rolling around on the floor speaking in "tongues" may be all the evidence you need to "prove" Christian
      2 – You define 0.01% as a "high success rate" when it comes to answered prayers. You consider that to be evidence that prayer works. And you think that the remaining 99.99% FAILURE was simply the will of God.
      1 – You actually know a lot less than many atheists and agnostics do about the Bible, catholicism and church

      July 27, 2012 at 9:31 am |
    • GYAG1970

      Really? So your god is that powerful but still let this happen. maybe your god just hated those people, or there is a better god than yours and that god won. Of course it could be that there is no god, our gun laws are weak, this guy was crazy.

      July 27, 2012 at 9:32 am |
    • Drinky Crow

      Your god was the one that killed those people in that theater. He can't take credit for saving people, but not take credit for killing the others, now can he? I mean, if he actually existed.

      July 27, 2012 at 9:32 am |
    • MarkinFL

      What a pathetic god. If he could jam the gun and do all of those other things, he could have had a police officer pull the guy over on the way to the theater and discover his cache of weapons.
      You want your god responsible for all of the good by divine intervention but all of the bad he allowed was due to free will?
      What a bunch of nonsense.

      July 27, 2012 at 9:33 am |
    • UrAnIdiot

      Wouldn't "your god" make the shooter do something else? Wouldn't "your god" eliminate any dangers to man like cliffs, cyanide, death, cruelty.

      If there is a god... I hope he has an excuse for being such an A SSHOLE

      July 27, 2012 at 9:34 am |
    • ironman59

      You can take of the tin foil hat and stop being delusion. We now return you to the real world.

      Had it not been for your "gawd" nonsense the dark ages would not hvae occurred. Mankind lost nearly 900 years of development in the western world because of it. Multiple the advancements in technology, medicine, science, engineering of the last 100 years by 900% It is quite possible that in 2012 cancer could be cured, population could be controlled, we could be living on the moon or other planets.

      However, that was pushed back because of people like you throughout history that went around saying "that isn't what gawd wants". Guess what, the world is round, space is cold and we have left this planet to fly. All things that religion said were impossible and that "gawd" would not let us know.

      In short, get over yourself and let real and open minded people rule the world. We will have a much better planet.

      July 27, 2012 at 9:43 am |
  4. GYAG1970

    I in no way want to deminish what happened but NYC faces over 40 murders a month on average. We are all shocked at the number killed or hurt in one incident, but where is the big differencs? If we as a nation have no intention of changeing gun laws because just under 500 people were murdered in NYC last year, then this will not change anything. I hear on the news refferences to "the lesson of Comombine". There was no "lesson of Colombine", if there was, we certainly did not learn it and we will learn nothing from this as well because our leaders are too weak and beholdant to the gun lobby.

    July 27, 2012 at 9:26 am |
    • RickInNY

      Seriously? Get a clue, gun control doees NOT work. Every citizen in Switzerland is issued a gun, and then trained how to use it. They have the lowest gun related crimes in the civilized world. If you outlaw guns, only the outlaws will have guns. Get it? Criminals do not care about gun laws and there is no way you can really expect every single gun in America to be confiscated. Plus, if that happened, that gives our government open season to imply its evil agenda on us, unimpeded.

      July 27, 2012 at 9:40 am |
  5. Robert Brown

    There is no God. I know this is false because he is here with me right now.
    Don’t blame God, blame Satan. Could be, Jesus said let them grow together they will be sorted at the judgment.
    Don’t blame God, blame us. True, he gives us free will, but I think it is a mistake to take this too far. He can and does intervene when he wants to. Our free will is limited.
    God was behind the massacre, and it was just. Could be, but if he forsakes the nation as a whole wouldn’t it be on a much larger scale, Civil War or WWIII?
    God was present at the massacre but with the victims, not the perpetrator. Could be either or both, and we cannot know unless he reveals his purpose to us.
    Which God? This is just malarkey. There is just one and our understanding generates questions like this. We tend to define good as we humans define it (humanist). God is not human, we only get a glimpse of his holiness and what he considers “good” when we are filled with his holy spirit. Isaiah 55: 8-9, “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts. “
    Who knows? It’s a mystery. Yes it is, while he may reveal his purpose to some, to others it will remain a mystery. Is it any less of a cop out to say there is no God?

    July 27, 2012 at 9:23 am |
    • What

      You are a sick minded person, I wrote the bible, Dummm asssss

      July 27, 2012 at 9:26 am |
    • SunGod

      Can you ask god to give me a $100 bucks if he's there with you? Or bring my dead hampster back from the grave he died three days ago...that's the rules right?

      July 27, 2012 at 9:27 am |
    • ironman59

      Typical religious nonsense. A twisted answer for every scenario. Depending on how an individual feels about a situation they can find some portion of some quote out of their fairytale book to justify or condemn the situation. Yet, when they don't follow their own rules and you use their book to point it out the immediate answer is "that's not what "gawd" wants". They claim that you don't understand their book yet they have no formal training and can't even find the quote if you wrote it out for them.

      You are the perfect example of why religion is nothing more than a scam. You use it as a tool to justify your behaviors while condemning others for the same behavior with different quotes. Hopefully in my time clowns like you will be the minority. If we want to cure disease on this planet, we need to start by curing the delusion of religion. With that out of the way, there is nothing we cannot achieve.

      July 27, 2012 at 9:52 am |
    • Robert Brown

      ironman59,
      I agree there are people who steal in the name of God, but what do you think was the motivation of the folks who wrote the bible?

      July 27, 2012 at 10:10 am |
    • Robert Brown

      What,
      And you are calling me sick minded.

      July 27, 2012 at 10:12 am |
    • Robert Brown

      Sungod,
      No and no.

      July 27, 2012 at 10:13 am |
  6. CommonSense

    Ok. Let's see.... It's Answer Number 1 from your list. Now, Are you religious child-adults ready to grow up and take responsibility yet? You don't have an invisible parent watching over you.

    Hello, McFly, is anybody home????

    July 27, 2012 at 9:23 am |
  7. Wunter Slouch

    "Self-professed atheists may make up only 2% of the U.S. population" Between this and the other answers to that question, I think I know what's wrong with your country.

    Simple answer: With Santa Claus.

    July 27, 2012 at 9:22 am |
  8. Why_Bother

    All these answers speak to one truth. Nobody Freaking Knows and never will.

    July 27, 2012 at 9:20 am |
  9. gigi

    [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vh6YcmNWM_4&w=640&h=390]

    July 27, 2012 at 9:20 am |
  10. Ggargoyle

    There is no god. Get over it. Its over.

    July 27, 2012 at 9:20 am |
    • Glenn

      Amen

      July 27, 2012 at 9:25 am |
    • SJ

      Where was SATAN?

      July 27, 2012 at 9:26 am |
  11. 1 of Gods Children MNTX

    We #1 dont live in heaven. If we were in heaven,(may the souls of the lost rest there peacefully) evil acts would be nonexistent. At the other end of the Spectrum, nor are we in hell. (Though it seems like it) Acts like this would be the norm. We are in our own existence/being human,ecompassed by both evil and good. Only one rises:GOOD(+) while the other falls:Evil(-) Life is simply contrast. It is through contrast that our heavenly father is able to distinguish those worthy of heaven and those worthy of hell. Strive to be positive (righteous) walk the path of the lord with the simple understanding that you will never fathom GODS doings.
    For the Atheist, WE ARE WAITING FOR YOU. YOU ARE BLESSED. (you are but Water trying to defeat the Sun (Son)

    July 27, 2012 at 9:18 am |
    • The Asian Atheist

      i don't like the idea of being a child for all eternity. I moved out of my parents house for a reason.

      July 27, 2012 at 9:21 am |
    • SunGod

      Fitting statment since all religon can be traced to worshiping the Sun

      July 27, 2012 at 9:24 am |
    • SSE

      Judging from your poor writing skills, it is obvious you left school at an early age. Your type is the perfect target for religious brainwashing. Perhaps if you had gotten a proper education, you would understand how silly your belief in an imaginary friend really is.

      July 27, 2012 at 9:32 am |
    • Dionysus

      @SunGod
      You may have been first for the obvious reason but the guys and gals in the Theogony are way cooler, fellow god dude.

      July 27, 2012 at 9:32 am |
    • Arturo Mahfouz

      With that logic the argument comes up: Why aren't "faithful" more excited when a loved one dies? According to the logic of the faithful, they're in a better place, and "happy"... Don't you want your loved one to be happy? Aren't you excited to get to the point where you can join them? The simple answer is NO, and in fact people get downright violent when a loved one dies and goes to heaven to be happy, they want revenge on the person who sent them to heaven to be happy... I have known A LOT of faithful over the years, both as a serviceman with bullets flying past me and my brothers and as a civilian and never once have I met a single person who WANTS to go to heaven, not a ONE...in war, the faithful will make attempts at prolonging their mortal life, and when crossing a street a civilian will look both ways, rather than just trusting in a higher power to bring you to "heaven" at a chosen time, you trust your judgement as a human and NOT your faith. This leads me to the following conclusion: There are no faithful, there are no religious, there are sheep who follow what is popular without taking the courage to trust in faith. I also contend that EVERY person in a fox hole is an atheist, otherwise they would be moving down a battle field trusting faith to guide them to victory or death.

      July 27, 2012 at 9:32 am |
    • ironman59

      Religion in all of it's forms is delusion at it's grandest. Religion feeds off the needs of people who cannot think for themselves – period. It has been used for thousands of years to enslave the masses. If you don't believe it just look at how the Taliban use religion. Look at how the so called "christian" right in this country use it to deny basic human righs to others.

      At it's core, religion is nothing more than a tool for evil. The various text of each religion are greatly different and if you don't believe that look at all of the flavors of christianity. They can't even agree on their own versions of the same events and yet all claim to be "right". Even with recent events the concept of "gawd" has been twisted into salvation, punishment and all things in between.

      I for one do not need some imaginary being and a bunch of fairy tales to fulfill and justify my life. I am quiet content in knowing that I Live – I Die. When I die I am gone for ever in a box until nature deteriorates that and I am food for the earth. I sleep quite well and I do quite well knowing that to be the truth. I do the right thing for my fellow man because it is the right thing and not because I am going to end up in some magical place.

      In time, religion will fade away and die. People will learn that a "gawd" does not exist the same way as we stopped worshiping the sun, the stars, the moon, etc thousands of years ago. It is the strong people who don't fall for this nonsense, not the weak.

      July 27, 2012 at 9:37 am |
    • Dionysus

      @ironman59
      Lighten up man, some of us gods have feelings too, I may be old and washed up and I don' expect you to believe in an old timey myth. Let me refer you to a guy I like, new and fresh, The Gospel of the Flying Spaghetti Monster, this dude knows how to party and doesn't ask for you to waste your beer money on contributions.

      July 27, 2012 at 9:59 am |
  12. Bill

    I believe in Leprechauns. I believe that the Leprechaun King lives in Leprechaun Heaven, where he where he busies himself answering prayers, running the Universe and recording the lives of humans for their final judgment before him. He is surrounded by an entire society of magical beings – his son Merlin, the Holy Leprechaun Spirit, the good fairy Mary, thousands of Leprechaun saints, fairies, pixies and the souls of many millions of dead people.

    I believe that the Leprechaun King loves me and hears my prayers. He intervenes in my life periodically by saving me from various ills. All I have to do is think to myself and he reads my mind and answers my prayers. He loves me and when I die, provided I have lived a good life, I will go to Leprechaun Heaven, where I will live happily ever after with all other humans who have ever led good lives.

    I know there is not a lot of evidence to support my beliefs, but that is just the point. The Leprechaun King wants us to have “faith,” so he never reveals himself. To make an unambiguous appearance and settle once and for all the question of his existence would deprive us of free will and, even though he is all-knowing, he would not know who his true believers were.

    In fact, I believe that the Leprechaun King is “beyond understanding”. He is “outside the Universe” and any time I am faced with something about my Leprechaun belief that makes no sense, I don’t dare question it, I just close my eyes and tell myself that my mind is too small to understand the greatness of the Leprechaun King. These answers are satisfying to me.

    Some people are called “atheists,” and they are skeptical of my belief in the Leprechaun King. They point out many inherent contradictions and unsupported assumptions that underwrite my belief in Leprechauns. But, they can’t prove he doesn’t exist, so he must exist. And so what! Even if I am wrong, and go my whole life believing in Leprechauns and it turns out I am wrong, I have lost nothing. However, if they are wrong, the Leprechaun King will send them to hell to burn forever in the presence of the Evil Ground Troll.

    Am I convincing you to believe in Leprechauns yet?

    July 27, 2012 at 9:18 am |
    • wayne

      Brilliant Bill. I'm stealing this.

      July 27, 2012 at 9:36 am |
    • Mitch

      I am willing to learn. I might even turn my back on Smitty, but I require proof in the form of a map to the pot of gold. After all my religion is really the obtaining of obscene wealth, greed is just swell. I bow down to you Leprecnaun King, ah!, if the map pans out.

      July 27, 2012 at 9:47 am |
  13. Clarence

    In our country, and the world as far a that goes, there are too many people who think they know it all. My take is that they don't and we may never know but someone out there gives us some hints about life. We have to listen, not always with our ears but with our spirit that lives inside us. It only amazes me that after all this, some run out to buy more guns when my take on it is that maybe we need less guns? Now 98% believe in a 'God' but think that 'Jesus' would have bought more guns instead of turning the other cheek? Now everyone is asking for help with their hospital bills but over half of our nation don't want health care? There are far too many people using the system and think government is the answer when maybe we should blame ourselves for teaching our kids just that. Love one another might just be an answer to our problems!

    July 27, 2012 at 9:16 am |
  14. Graham

    Wonderful, I'm glad we got this cleared up! Next question...where were the sensible gun control laws that could have prevented this from happening? *crickets chirping*

    July 27, 2012 at 9:16 am |
    • Mathew

      Graham, as you know this guy was a genius bent on hurting people. So if he couldn't have bought the guns, wouldn't he have just found another way to do it? Possibly something the home made bombs he made in his apartment? Guns wouldn't have prevented this killer from being a killer. At least that's my opinion and I will respect you if you disagree.

      July 27, 2012 at 9:22 am |
  15. USAisntfree

    God was there in the theatre thinking "I gave you the right to bear arms and you're not bearing"

    July 27, 2012 at 9:16 am |
  16. brad

    No it's bush's fault, EVERYTHING is bush's fault.. if you think Obama is wrong, then your a racist (of course).... 4 more years of blaming bush and republicans for EVERYTHING that's wrong and Obama for everything's that right.. woohooo..

    July 27, 2012 at 9:16 am |
    • Mo

      It is actually 8 years of Bush's failures.

      July 27, 2012 at 9:28 am |
  17. Evian Bidet

    I know one thing... there definitely isn't a devil causing humans to do bad. Upbringing, wiring, or just being bad apples causes humans to do bad things. And if you need a 2000 year old book to explain morality to you, then that is a you problem.

    July 27, 2012 at 9:16 am |
  18. Jeff

    Why are atheists in the media always described as "Self-Proclaimed" or "Self-Professed" or something like that. It's like you're saying, "This guy says he's an atheist, but you and I know how crazy that sounds." I don't think I've ever heard of a Christian or Muslim, or really any other religious person or people called, "Self-Professed". "Billy Graham, Self-Professed Christian, Supports Chick-Fil-A," is a headline or a sentence I don't think we'd ever see in a news story.

    /rant

    July 27, 2012 at 9:15 am |
    • K

      Exactly. I think 2% is a bit low, too. A lot of people go to church or categorize themselves as Christians because of family, friends, social pressure, habit, upbringing, fear, you name it. I would imagine many, if not most, don't truly believe in all of it.

      July 27, 2012 at 9:25 am |
  19. Ali Spielberg

    God's reasons for the pain of humanity have been revealed recently... You are invited to consider the Holy Mural Lecture Series... Go to You Tube and search Holy Mural...

    July 27, 2012 at 9:15 am |
  20. Hogarth

    I object to Epicurus being labeled a mere "skeptic". He was not a skeptic, either philosophically, religiously or scientifically. Merely being an unbeliever does not make one a skeptic.

    July 27, 2012 at 9:14 am |
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About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.