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May 22nd, 2013
06:20 PM ET

This Oklahoma atheist isn't thanking the Lord

By Jessica Ravitz, CNN
[twitter-follow screen_name='JRavitzCNN']

(CNN) – Behind her were ruins, a tangled mess where structures once stood. Cradled in her arms, the mother’s 19-month-old son played with a snatched microphone, unfazed by the chaos swirling around him. And in front of Rebecca Vitsmun stood CNN’s Wolf Blitzer, who – after asking her about the decision that saved her and her son's lives – had one more question:

“I guess you got to thank the Lord, right?” he asked.

“Yeah,” she mumbled, smiling and looking down.

“Do you thank the Lord for that split-second decision?” he continued.

“I, I, I,” the 30-year-old stay-at-home mom stammered before adding, “I’m actually an atheist.”

She laughed, Blitzer laughed, and the moment passed seamlessly on live TV. Except it also became a clip heard across the Internet and social media – one that pointed to a reality about faith in America that exists even where, and when, people might least expect it.

Vitsmun, who chronicled her decision to flee her house with her son on CNN iReport, is one of 13 million atheists or agnostics in America, according to a 2012 report by the Pew Research Center's Forum on Religion & Public Life.

See Rebecca Vitsmun discuss her decision with CNN's Wolf Blitzer

While only 2.4% of Americans are atheists, they fit into a broader category that is on the rise in the United States.

Nearly 20% of adults – and a third of those under 30 – are religiously unaffiliated, the Pew report found.

This group, which has grown by roughly 5% in five years, is often referred to as the “nones.” It is a term that extends beyond atheists, who believe there is no God, and agnostics, who believe it’s impossible to prove or disprove God’s existence. It includes a greater proportion of people who see themselves as nothing in particular, which means they might be secular, spiritual or believers – but simply don’t identify with an organized religion, said Greg Smith, a senior researcher at the Pew Research Center

“When we ask people questions about their religious identity, when we ask them about their religious beliefs, there are relatively few who are atheists. But I’m speaking in percentage terms,” Smith said. “That doesn’t mean there aren’t lots of them around. And they’re certainly all over.”

Oklahoma included.

In fact, when the Pew Research Center last drilled down to uncover the religious landscape of affiliations on a state level five years ago, 12% of Oklahomans were religiously unaffiliated. And just as the numbers ticked up nationally since then, it stands to reason that they did the same in Oklahoma.

We tried to reach Vitsmun by phone Wednesday but were unable to connect.

Her friend Waylon Flinn, however, shed some light on who she is. She and her husband, who Flinn said is also an atheist, aren’t the sorts who advertise their beliefs or throw them in people’s faces. When she agreed to go on camera, it wasn’t for that platform; she didn’t even see the Lord question coming.

But that she responded to Blitzer the way she did is no surprise to Flinn, who opened his home in nearby Norman to Vitsmun’s family after theirs was destroyed.

“She handled it in her style, which is very honest and true to herself,” he said.

- CNN Writer/Producer

Filed under: Atheism • iReport • News media

soundoff (2,486 Responses)
  1. Novastar

    THANK YOU WOMAN!!!! On live TV this woman had the guts to admit that the "Lord" has nothing to do with it. What about the other children who were killed? What do they have to thank?

    May 22, 2013 at 7:02 pm |
  2. Omen

    Oh ok. I think is her fault and her other atheist neighborhood friends. Oklahoma must be full of atheists,

    May 22, 2013 at 6:59 pm |
    • Observer

      You sound like you have the same level of intelligence as Pat Robertson.

      May 22, 2013 at 7:03 pm |
    • ME II

      I'm guessing Poe?

      May 22, 2013 at 7:05 pm |
    • sqeptiq

      I'm guessing sarcasm.

      May 22, 2013 at 10:47 pm |
  3. my2cntsworth

    believing in a god does not make someone less smart than others, however it dilutes them. Believing in a deity that doesn't exist makes the religious feel better, but it doesn't make that deity any more real than the flying spaghetti monster. People thank god for surviving a terrible act of nature, but how do you square that with those that tragically died? What about the children that died? How can you possibly justify god's indifference to their lives? The obvious answer is there is no god to blame or thank for what happens. Don't dilute yourselves. You know that what I'm speaking is the truth. You don't have to be scared to say that you are confused as to why things happen if there is a god.

    May 22, 2013 at 6:51 pm |
    • CBLowther

      Well Said.

      May 22, 2013 at 7:02 pm |
    • jason

      delude... dilute is to add water to a solution to make it weaker..delude is what you mean. happy to help.

      May 22, 2013 at 7:31 pm |
    • Me

      5 star

      May 22, 2013 at 9:22 pm |
    • Who is God's God

      Nice post....

      May 23, 2013 at 9:39 am |
    • Dan H

      Hey you can say what you want about God but don't you dare say anything bad about the flying spaghetti monster! Oh dear spaghetti monster I offer you this glorious marinara sauce as symbol of this man's blood for his harsh words as he knoweth not of what he slurps.

      May 23, 2013 at 10:07 am |
    • Arch Stanton

      I'm not sure it doesn't make them less intelligent over time, though. I've experienced this with Christian friends - they often have a hard time figuring things out logically, because they've spent so much time seeing facts, evidence, and logic as something to work *around* so they can keep believing what they want to believe that they've lost the skills to use it in other situations. Our brains can become programmed to think certain ways, and some ways can be detrimental.

      May 23, 2013 at 11:49 am |
    • Raymond

      Arch Stanton...ummm...BEST NAME, EVER!
      and I agree with you as well.

      May 23, 2013 at 2:14 pm |
  4. Huskys Rule

    Well won't she be surprised when she gets to see God and he asks why she failed him!

    May 22, 2013 at 6:50 pm |
    • stu

      Uh, no.

      May 22, 2013 at 6:53 pm |
    • Nick

      Are you kidding me? "She failed him"?!?!?! HE DESTROYED HER HOME. If anybody failed anybody, sky daddy failed all those poor people, and most other people on this planet, by the way. You and your warped way of thinking are truly evil.

      May 22, 2013 at 6:55 pm |
    • Barking Up The Wrong God

      Huskys, Odin's gonna slap you big time unless you google "Pascal's Wager", you ignoramus.

      May 22, 2013 at 6:55 pm |
    • CommonSensed

      Which one?

      May 22, 2013 at 6:56 pm |
    • YourMom

      Wow, what a thoroughly disgusting and heartless thing to say. I expect nothing less from a "Christian".

      May 22, 2013 at 7:03 pm |
    • Katie K

      How can she be "surprised" by something that doesn't exist? And, how did SHE fail HIM?

      May 22, 2013 at 7:03 pm |
    • Novastar

      So let me get this straight. The "Lord" kept the atheist alive but killed innocent children? Stop with the BS, we live in 2013. Grow a brain.

      May 22, 2013 at 7:03 pm |
    • sqeptiq

      Won't you be surprised when you die and there is no god? NO. Because you will just be dead and surprised is probably not allowed in dead.

      May 22, 2013 at 10:49 pm |
    • Chris

      If God loves his children so much and wants us to praise him and heed his words, why did it take almost 1500 years for his name to reach this continent?

      May 23, 2013 at 12:29 am |
  5. Joe in Fl

    To Those who doubt the existence of God.

    What is your purpose here on this earth? Is it your contention we are born live and then die? No existence after?
    Do you believe we do have some existence after death?
    What proof do you have if so?

    What is the purpose of love then?

    Why would a fortuitous concourse of atoms need love, a lawful society, charity.

    Why do atheist want to hurt people who do believe there is God, by saying they are stupid ... willing to write off an entire persons existence. Whatever they do.

    May 22, 2013 at 6:46 pm |
    • JWT

      I have no doubts about the non-existance of any of the 1000s of human made gods.

      May 22, 2013 at 6:48 pm |
    • Colin

      To Joe

      Why do you think you can believe in childish things like evil devils, good angels, gods, holy ghosts etc. and not be called childish?

      May 22, 2013 at 6:50 pm |
    • Kip Wendell

      You're questions are rhetorical and have no answers. The fact that you are asking "why" without any obvious answer is your answer... there is no God. Wake up.

      Some of the worst atrocities in human history has been done in the name of the Lord. Including slavery, misogyny and the current bigotry.

      May 22, 2013 at 6:50 pm |
    • Chuckles

      @Joe in Fl

      My purpose on earth?: Life is what you make of it

      Life after death?: No

      Purpose of love?: Does there have to be a purpose to everything?

      "Why do atheist want to hurt people who do believe there is God, by saying they are stupid ... willing to write off an entire persons existence. Whatever they do."
      –Hate the belief, not the believer. Hurt seems like a strong word, then again there was also just an attack from two apparent muslim men slashing at random citizens on the street in London because the attackers were muslim and the other people weren't. Looks to me like religion is the one that actively tries to have its followers murder people huh.

      May 22, 2013 at 6:51 pm |
    • stu

      Why do you need a "purpose to life" to feel comfortable? What's wrong with the idea we're here randomly and that other than for procreation, there is no purpose to our lives? I'm quite comfortable with it and, in truth, it helps me live live to the fullest – I'm not hoping for "more", just what's here now.

      May 22, 2013 at 6:53 pm |
    • NICE!

      It is you religious zealots who want to hurt and hate everyone. This lady didn't even seem to want to talk about it until she was pressed on the whole "LORD" thing. What is your proof of the existence of God? All that crap you spouted was NOT proof.

      May 22, 2013 at 6:55 pm |
    • ME II

      @Joe in Fl,
      "What is your purpose here on this earth?"
      There is no inherent purpose. We discover and make our own.

      " Is it your contention we are born live and then die? No existence after?"
      Yes

      "What proof do you have if so?"
      The evidence is that without brain function we don't appear to think. Why would you think there is "something else"?

      "What is the purpose of love then?"
      1) why does it need a "purpose".
      2) the function of the emotion of love may have originated as simply pair bonding in order to maximize the survival of offspring.
      That doesn't make it any less enjoyable, awesome, and precious.

      "Why would a fortuitous concourse of atoms need love, a lawful society, charity."
      see above

      "Why do atheist want to hurt people who do believe there is God, by saying they are stupid ... "
      Not sure atheist want to hurt anyone. They do however want equal protection for non-belief and generally want to remove religious influence on government, laws, and public policy. Some times that means disabusing people of their misunderstandings.

      "willing to write off an entire persons existence. Whatever they do."
      Not sure what this means.

      May 22, 2013 at 6:56 pm |
    • CommonSensed

      My answers won't be good enough for you because they don't fit in your world-view and rely too much on facts and less on myth.

      May 22, 2013 at 6:57 pm |
    • Kristin Di

      We are nothing but mammals. What is the purpose of a spider's life? What is the purpose of a Turkey, Cow or tons of other living things you kill to eat? What is their purpose? Have you ever thought about that?

      May 22, 2013 at 7:00 pm |
    • tparker602

      @Chuckles
      It's refreshing to see someone walking into this discussion without anger or resentment. Thank you. Please forgive many of the Christians you will see react from a place of ignorance or condemnation. Unfortunately there is always ignorance from either side...
      The truth however is it takes more faith to be an atheist than a believer in Christ. Creation is his fingerprint. "Matter cannot be created nor destroyed", yet it somehow did. Where did the bang come from? Where did the atoms come from that made the bang. Where did the energy come from that created the atoms that created the bang. You see, there is no end to the search for the beginning that does not lead to a creator. Unless you have figured this out, your faith lies with man who has no answer. Whereas my faith is in God who has given me an answer.

      God Bless your discovery of the truth!

      May 22, 2013 at 7:02 pm |
    • Victor M

      The same people that mock atheist, believe a snake talked a girl into eating some fruit!!!! nothing dumb about that!

      In Thor we trust! Zeus bless America, one nation under RA! (when you understand how silly other gods look to you, you'll understand how silly yours looks to me)

      May 22, 2013 at 7:07 pm |
    • Modoc Brown

      To Those who doubt the existence of God.

      Q. What is your purpose here on this earth? Is it your contention we are born live and then die? No existence after?
      A. Purpose is something we invented. What is the purpose of a tree, mouse, spec of dirt? Technically we still exist after we're dead but it's not in any way
      similar to life. Our energy leaves, transferring to heat, gas, food for bugs, etc.

      Q.Do you believe we do have some existence after death?
      A. Asked and answered.

      Q. What proof do you have if so?
      A. I'm not sure what is meant by this question. The billions of deaths, humans – even total species.

      Q. What is the purpose of love then?
      A. Love is probably a hormonal response created by the brain and other glands that leads to protection of offspring and mates.

      Q. Why would a fortuitous concourse of atoms need love, a lawful society, charity.
      A. It doesn't. This universe existed that way for billions and billions of years before humans were here just fine. As to current life, even atheists like to be comfortable. A civilized world with technology can help with that. A godless society is not a lawless society. If you need god to maintain a civilized lifestyle, that says something about that individual – nothing good.

      Q. Why do atheist want to hurt people who do believe there is God, by saying they are stupid ... willing to write off an entire persons existence. Whatever they do.
      A. Bigotry goes both ways. Not all atheists call theists stupid for having a faith in a god(s). Most vocal atheists oppose the convergence of religion with science.

      May 22, 2013 at 7:09 pm |
    • Chuckles

      @tparker
      "The truth however is it takes more faith to be an atheist than a believer in Christ. Creation is his fingerprint. "Matter cannot be created nor destroyed", yet it somehow did. Where did the bang come from? Where did the atoms come from that made the bang. Where did the energy come from that created the atoms that created the bang. You see, there is no end to the search for the beginning that does not lead to a creator. Unless you have figured this out, your faith lies with man who has no answer. Whereas my faith is in God who has given me an answer.

      God Bless your discovery of the truth!"

      I've seen that response many times but it still makes no sense. First, the "where"'s that you ask have theories (namely multiverse and oscillating). Second, you claim to see the fingerprint, but I fail to see it as well as you will have difficulties matching up a "creator" with a specific god (like the one from the bible). Third, I am comfortable not knowing the answers. I don't believe in something like the big bang theory without any evidence, nor do I shape my life around the big bang theory being right. It is or it isn't, neither effect me personally. Fourth, if you really want to drag out the old canard of "no energy can be created or destroyed" then you have to ask yourself, who created the creator?

      Not knowing something isn't a bad thing and learning about the beginning of the universe from a 2000 year old book is the exact wrong place to start looking for answers.

      I hope one day you will understand this.

      May 22, 2013 at 7:21 pm |
    • Larisa

      My answers to Joe in Fl...
      To Those who doubt the existence of God.

      What is your purpose here on this earth?
      My purpose here on earth is that I have no purpose. I happened to be the product of billions and billions of years of explosions, starbursts, and chemical and physical reactions. Nothing more. Purpose is a human construct.

      Is it your contention we are born live and then die? No existence after?
      Yes, we live and we die. At least that is my belief-of course, who actually knows, but in my reasoning mind, the concept that we have a soul that magically drifts to an afterworld seems ridiculous. What is our soul-a composition of thought processes and emotions brought about by neurons which are, in fact, organic constructs which will decay upon our passing.

      Do you believe we do have some existence after death?
      No.
      What proof do you have if so?
      I have no proof. Just as you and others have no proof that there is existence after death. You have a belief-the same as me.

      What is the purpose of love then?
      Love is a wonderful thing. I love love, and have much of it in my life. But it is, purely, a combination of a series of chemical reactions and an instinctive pull that humans have to connect to others.

      Why would a fortuitous concourse of atoms need love, a lawful society, charity.
      That is what is so wonderful about the universe. It precipitated a great number of things that we enjoy. But I believe there was no thought process by some grand creator...these things just are because they are. Nothing more.

      Why do atheist want to hurt people who do believe there is God, by saying they are stupid ... willing to write off an entire persons existence. Whatever they do.

      I do not believe those that believe in God are stupid. I believe that the human race, as a whole, suffers and has always suffered, from confusion and loneliness. And that many people believe that if there is no reason for our being, it makes our lives worthless. And hence many cling to a belief in a greater power, a divine parent who is watching over us. I think it allays people's fears, nothing more. And this is fine. It's when they shove their beliefs in my face that I strongly object.

      All to say, whatever gets you through this life, do it. But I feel that life in itself is enough of a purpose-my interactions with the mountains, the sunshine, the trees, the animals, and the people I am surrounded by is enough of a purpose for me to spend the next 50 or so years in relative bliss. No need to believe more than that, at least in my opinion.

      May 22, 2013 at 7:32 pm |
    • Joe in Fl

      I just asked some questions, you gave your opinion.

      Thank you all for your input.

      May 23, 2013 at 12:01 am |
    • John Wanye

      We are on this Earth to learn as much as we can from each other, better humanity and when our short time is up move on to the next phase of exsistence. Hopefully by the time you die you should have gathered enough experience and wisdom to move on to the next plain of understanding. Maybe religion shows us that path, it's a great handbook on how to live your life and how to show compassion and understanding. Unfortunately you have Religions who compete with the fact that thiers is far superior than yours and exclusivity, White Churces, Black churches, class churchess. Amazing how they become exclusive and if you enter a church where your class doesn;t belong how are you greeted? With open arms or hostility? I guess you are not ready to move on to the next plain of exsistence. Maybe Athesist view thier exsistence finite? Once they are gone they are gone? Then why do they procreate? They know thier exsistence on this earth has it's limit. So do they view thier moment of exsistence as the most beautiful moments in thier lives because they will never feel that feeling again? Maybe when it's my time to leave this earth I might be there to witness the revelation of an Athesist non belief turn into confusion, bewilderment and suprise?

      May 23, 2013 at 12:12 am |
    • madmanmoses

      it is a human condition..period.. stop being afraid of the dark...

      May 23, 2013 at 12:57 am |
    • vicki

      Different slant to your post. I can't believe in the concept of hell. 1) An eternity of pain? Think about that - who actually deserves that sentence? Severe pain forever without an end. 2) Hell given to those who don't believe the "right" god? Seems silly to send unbelievers to hell but spare people who commit actual evil and just repent before death.
      I would rather not exist after I die, than send anyone to an eternity of hell.

      May 23, 2013 at 10:24 am |
    • WASP

      @Tparker: "The truth however is it takes more faith to be an atheist than a believer in Christ. Creation is his fingerprint. "Matter cannot be created nor destroyed", yet it somehow did. Where did the bang come from? Where did the atoms come from that made the bang. Where did the energy come from that created the atoms that created the bang. You see, there is no end to the search for the beginning that does not lead to a creator. Unless you have figured this out, your faith lies with man who has no answer. Whereas my faith is in God who has given me an answer."

      REPLY: energy can not be created nor destroyed, yuou have that correct, then you just show ignorance whether knowingly or not.
      energy is what atoms are comprised of.
      atoms are what combine to create everything else.
      depending on the combination of energy particules inside an atom you can either have HYDROGEN atom which is one proton, one nuetron and one electron or any other element in the periodic table.

      it takes more faith to believe in "a parental figure in the sky" than it does to examine the universe as it is.

      May 23, 2013 at 10:30 am |
  6. Kip Wendell

    You. Christians. Are. Delusional. ALL of you!

    You're God is like a man who beats his wife, then afterwards, tenderly asks her, "Baby, why'd you make me do it?" The in turn she loves him because he is so good to her after the continued beatings.

    God's blessings and mercy? No thank you!

    May 22, 2013 at 6:46 pm |
    • tparker602

      You're God is like a man who beats his wife, then afterwards, tenderly asks her, "Baby, why'd you make me do it?"

      God didn't kill these people, a tornado did. God created us a perfect place, and we choose sin. So God gave us Earth and it is imperfect, and because of our choice we must deal with Earth's wrath (not God's). I don't blame Satan for my mistakes any more than you should blame God for this.

      May 22, 2013 at 6:51 pm |
    • Kip Wendell

      Time and time again Christians say natural disasters like this are punishment of some sort, or a show of his mighty Godliness, etc. If there is a God whom you all believe to have ultimate control of the universe... then yeah, this is on him, or her... oh wait, Him.

      May 22, 2013 at 7:00 pm |
    • Who is God's God

      @tparker602: If this thing you call god made the perfect place (earth) why is there billions of other solar systems out there, so you can gaze up at the stars and see how beautiful it is?

      May 23, 2013 at 9:53 am |
    • G to the T

      Wait, wait, wait. "Sin" causes tornados? There were no tornados before sin? How do you rationalize that?

      May 23, 2013 at 12:02 pm |
  7. Leah

    What is wrong with Wolf Blitzer? How dare he ask such a loaded question? For a news organization that is supposed to report facts in an unbiased way, that was an extremely unprofessional question to ask. If his perspective had been reversed and he assumed she were an atheist and she wasn't (and made some comment about how there is no god to hold responsible), can you imagine the outcry?

    May 22, 2013 at 6:45 pm |
    • Katie K

      I agree – if the question had been reversed we'd be hearing about it from all the poor persecuted xtians. It would be a firestorm of "outrage".

      May 22, 2013 at 7:10 pm |
    • Me

      some of that gray hair is growing into his brain the past 2-3 years. He's not as good reporter as he used to be.

      May 22, 2013 at 9:30 pm |
  8. Ken

    Glad they are posting this story rather than dropping it. @thiests are growing in numbers and need equal time in the press.

    May 22, 2013 at 6:39 pm |
    • ME II

      Not sure about equal time, per se. Equitable time maybe or equal representation. But it just doesn't take long to say "I lack a belief in god(s)".

      May 22, 2013 at 6:44 pm |
    • sqeptiq

      Watching theists is like watching a train wreck...it's magnetically fascinating. Watching atheists is like watching a freeway after the traffic has thinned...flowing along smoothly...not much drama.

      May 22, 2013 at 10:56 pm |
    • Who is God's God

      @sqeptiq: The funny thing is all of us Atheists just laugh at the comments that come out of your mouths.

      May 23, 2013 at 9:57 am |
  9. Bob

    Satan teaches people that there is no Satan, and there is no God. His goal is to have people think that there are no consequences for their actions. He is convincing more and more people, especially in the USA.

    May 22, 2013 at 6:37 pm |
    • Observer

      God created Satan and bragged about doing evil.

      May 22, 2013 at 6:38 pm |
    • M.E.

      Why on earth would anyone think there's no consequences to actions, satan or no satan? I pinch myself, the consequence of that is it hurts. Simple logic tells us there are consequences to actions, not supernatural beings.

      May 22, 2013 at 6:40 pm |
    • Huskys Rule

      Well won't she be sorry when she finds out she was WAY wrong. Who do you think it was that saved you and your family lady, just luck? It wasn't luck that saved you, it was God and nothing more.

      May 22, 2013 at 6:42 pm |
    • ME II

      @Husky's Rule,
      By that logic, who do you think sent an EF5 tornado in the first place, God and nothing more?

      May 22, 2013 at 6:47 pm |
    • Aaarff

      If God is so powerful then why doesn't he just destroy Satan? Humanity will never prove or disprove God so what's the point of arguing. Everyone needs to live their own life, don't force your own views on other people.

      May 22, 2013 at 6:56 pm |
    • stu

      Sure, Husky, God was sitting up there, with all the other stuff going on in the world, deciding which of the 1000's of people in the path of the storm would live and die. I'd be really curious to know why this atheist lived and other folks died? Maybe God loves atheists most?

      May 22, 2013 at 6:56 pm |
    • jodiandbrandon

      Satan didn't teach me anything... nor did God. I taught myself by looking at everything with an open, educated and free mind. If there is an afterlife then me guided by my own self instilled morals will see that I reach it. If there's a maker to be met, I can meet it with my head held high... And if there isn't then I'm glad I didn't waste time, money and energy on the teaching of any specific religions skewed opinion.

      May 22, 2013 at 6:57 pm |
    • CommonSensed

      Seems to me he started outside the US since there are 5 times as many muslims in the world as there are US citizens. And by the definition of your book muslims are not christians and therefore dammed. As are all other religions.

      Ooops.

      May 22, 2013 at 7:00 pm |
    • redzoa

      "His goal is to have people think that there are no consequences for their actions"

      The irony here is that many, if not most, Christians argue that any sinner, no matter how abhorrent their actions in this life, can enter heaven through repentance, acceptance of JC, and grace.

      May 22, 2013 at 7:13 pm |
    • madmanmoses

      yes, just last week i was at the devils classroom and he taught me all that and more...damn adam damn eve!!

      May 23, 2013 at 1:06 am |
  10. Sapientiam

    God or no God, let's be happy she survived.

    May 22, 2013 at 6:37 pm |
    • M.E.

      R'amen!

      May 22, 2013 at 6:38 pm |
    • ME II

      Yes!
      Her and all the other survivors.

      May 22, 2013 at 6:45 pm |
  11. ALLuh

    GAWD must be a cruel Awipe

    May 22, 2013 at 6:35 pm |
  12. Mancy Grace

    What kind of benevolent god allows the birth of Donald Trump? What divine provenance can be found in the existence of Hitler, Pol Pot, and Dick Cheney? I won't try to deny a higher order, but there is nothing intelligent or divine about the behavior exhibited by those who claim to be guided by "god" (Pat Robertson anybody?).

    May 22, 2013 at 6:32 pm |
    • Colin

      Not only that, but the French? And British women??

      May 22, 2013 at 6:34 pm |
    • Spencer

      Hey, I like the French! I'm offended by your comment, please remove yourself! 🙂 And send me some French pastry. I'm hungry.

      May 22, 2013 at 6:38 pm |
  13. just me.

    Which right wing conservative president will be movie ing in to the White House?Santorum,Bachman?How about Elmer Gantry?I don't believe in h e l l but a snowball has a better chance.Carry on-your stupidity is amusing.

    May 22, 2013 at 6:30 pm |
  14. bankrupt1

    i thought it was odd that he assumed that when he asked. she dealt with it well.

    May 22, 2013 at 6:29 pm |
    • G to the T

      In my experience, most people in the US just assume you are a christian. Personally I find it a bit arrogant but I can certainly understand why they do it.

      May 23, 2013 at 12:05 pm |
  15. Jeff

    These kids of disasters will keep coming, and will come more often as more and more people reject God. There will come a time in every Atheist's life (hopefully) where they will be so downtrodden and feel so lost, that they won't know where else to turn except to God for support and answers. At that moment, the truth will finally sink in.

    May 22, 2013 at 6:27 pm |
    • Colin

      If I ever get to the point where my mind is so distorted that I have to appeal to a hokey sky-fairy for help, like the weak minded believer, I hope somebody puts me down. Oh, dear god, to be that small minded. I don't know how some of these people function in society.

      May 22, 2013 at 6:29 pm |
    • just me.

      When YOU get to the pearly gates you better hope Allah isn't waiting for you.But then again,you know the TRUTH don't you?

      May 22, 2013 at 6:33 pm |
    • Spencer

      Yes, let's hope everybody suffers TONS, and then, when they've suffered enough, we'll expect them to turn to a magic sky being for help? No offense, if you want to ask some invisible magic thing/person/being for help, that's your choice. But I can tell you that no matter how bad things might get for me, I'd never turn to magic. Because magic doesn't work. It might make you feel better, but its not going to solve your problems.

      May 22, 2013 at 6:36 pm |
    • Chris

      I am an atheist. I am also a physician who spends my days aiding the sick and dying. I have worked exceptionally hard to get to where I am at and there certainly wasn't any supreme being helping me do it. I have seen people on the brink of death praying to a god in vain. These same people would have died had I have not done something. I do not discriminate based on religious values. I am appalled to see so called Christians harbouring ill will and even praying that hard times befall me because I do not share the same beliefs as they do. Can you not see the hypocrisy in that?

      May 22, 2013 at 6:40 pm |
    • The real Tom

      Jeff, if you worship a deity who kills little children in a school to punish the whole country, then you're a bloomin' moron. A god has nothing whatsoever to do with the weather or the climate. You're daft, bub.

      May 22, 2013 at 6:44 pm |
    • Kip Wendell

      You. Are. Delusional. ALL of you!

      You're God is like a man who beats his wife, then afterwards, tenderly asks her, ":Baby, why'd you make me do it?" The in turn she loves him because he is so good to her after the continued beatings.

      God's blessings and mercy? No thank you!

      May 22, 2013 at 6:44 pm |
    • CommonSensed

      Please don't vote or breed. It'll really help the rest of us out. A lot.

      May 22, 2013 at 7:01 pm |
    • stu

      Yes, because natural disasters never happened before, or in places fully-populated by believers.

      May 22, 2013 at 7:01 pm |
    • Me

      No, if I feel a little down I will have some booze maybe a pint of Ben & Jerry's or Haagen-Dazs. Still no Flying Spiggty Monster in the sky.

      May 22, 2013 at 9:42 pm |
  16. Christian

    JESUS IS LORD OF LORDS AND KING OF KINGS!!!

    May 22, 2013 at 6:24 pm |
    • dillweed7

      Where's your Messiah now?

      May 22, 2013 at 6:41 pm |
    • thd

      Yes. Simple Truth. She says she is an atheist, but her heart cries out for the loving God who created her. God is good all the time, regardless of a tornado or not. John 10:10-The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.

      May 22, 2013 at 6:44 pm |
    • CommonSensed

      Who's father decided to wipe out a town? Wow.

      May 22, 2013 at 7:02 pm |
    • Me

      Says Who?

      May 22, 2013 at 9:43 pm |
    • sqeptiq

      Monarchist trash!

      May 22, 2013 at 10:58 pm |
    • madmanmoses

      and dead......

      May 23, 2013 at 1:10 am |
    • Who is God's God

      SO saying a verse from a book made by really old people makes it true.... wow...

      May 23, 2013 at 10:10 am |
  17. JustTheFacts

    God is not a god who exists only to serve you. He does not exist for your pleasure or to be at your beckon call. Instead, you exist to serve him, and we were created for his pleasure. That is your purpose. So when have you last served God and what have you done for him lately?

    The very same people who have the nerve to write articles like this which are against God and are critical of the way he operates, are the very same people who commit enormous amounts of sin on a regular basis. They completely ignore the will of God and the word of God and don't even give God a second thought until they find themselves in a situation that only God can get them out of. And then suddenly they find themselves trying to pray to the very God they've been completely ignoring. And they have the nerve to wonder why that God is ignoring them.

    May 22, 2013 at 6:24 pm |
    • ME II

      @JustTheFacts,
      "...you exist to serve him, and we were created for his pleasure. That is your purpose."

      So you claim. Why should I, or anyone, believe you?

      May 22, 2013 at 6:30 pm |
    • M.E.

      I am nobodys slave, thank you.

      May 22, 2013 at 6:34 pm |
    • Observer

      If we are to deal with JUST THE FACTS, there are NONE that prove God exists. Please use a dictionary to learn the definition of the word "fact".

      May 22, 2013 at 6:37 pm |
    • ME II

      "... created for his pleasure."
      ".EVERY KNEE WILL BOW..."

      I'm not liking the looks of this...

      May 22, 2013 at 6:38 pm |
    • JustTheFacts

      To "M.E."… Know the truth. You did not create yourself. Nor do you belong to yourself. You belong to God and are his property. You were created for his pleasure and it is your duty is to serve him…

      Revelations 4:11 – Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created.

      May 22, 2013 at 6:55 pm |
    • JustTheFacts

      Observer… Don't be ignorant. Ever heard of Jesus Christ? That is all the proof you need that God exist. You may not to accept it but it is still "proof"...

      May 22, 2013 at 6:58 pm |
    • JWT

      Every knee should bow as the start of the kick to god's nonexistant britches.

      May 22, 2013 at 7:01 pm |
    • stu

      So this is sort of a slave relationship? He says dance and I dance? No wonder people are rejecting the idea of God.

      May 22, 2013 at 7:02 pm |
    • ME II

      @JustTheFacts,
      You obviously don't understand "facts" nor "proof". Why do you overcompensate by claiming that which you do not have, i.e. certainty.

      May 22, 2013 at 7:03 pm |
    • Observer

      JustTheFacts,

      "Observer… Don't be ignorant. Ever heard of Jesus Christ?"

      Jesus Christ just proves that Jesus existed. It does not prove that he was the son of God or that God exists.

      You are confused between "fact" and "opinion". FACTS can be proven. "Don't be ignorant".

      May 22, 2013 at 7:06 pm |
    • JustTheFacts

      To "Me II"... I think the existence of Jesus Christ is quite certain. I need no more poof than that...

      May 22, 2013 at 7:24 pm |
    • Observer

      JustTheFacts
      "I think the existence of Jesus Christ is quite certain. I need no more poof than that..."

      No problem. That is your opinon. A fact is proveable. And you don't need any more "poof". 🙂

      May 22, 2013 at 7:27 pm |
    • JustTheFacts

      Observer… I think there is "proof enough" that he was the son of God (the many miracles he did and the countless things people witnessed) which is evidence of someone who's divine. And if that is the case, then there is also proof enough that God exists – because no son can exist without a father. In contrast to that, you haven't provided even a single ounce of evidence that the was NOT the son of God. All you are is just "talk", and all you have is just an "opinion". Which doesn't mean a thing…

      May 22, 2013 at 7:32 pm |
    • JustTheFacts

      Observer… The existence of Jesus Christ is an established fact in history. If you're too dumb to know that then you're much too dumb for me to be wasting my time talking to you…

      May 22, 2013 at 7:34 pm |
    • madmanmoses

      then you might as well stop praying for that cadillac......

      May 23, 2013 at 1:12 am |
  18. Milienius

    I mean...ok great...I don't see why this needs to be on the front section of CNN though...

    May 22, 2013 at 6:24 pm |
  19. Christian

    EVERY KNEE WILL BOW AND EVERY TOUGUE WILL CONFESS, THAT HE IS LORD!!!

    May 22, 2013 at 6:23 pm |
    • ME II

      riiiiight, just keep on sayin' that.

      May 22, 2013 at 6:26 pm |
    • James Quinn

      Or not.. Just saying.

      Pagan jim

      May 22, 2013 at 6:36 pm |
    • Huskys Rule

      Ditto

      May 22, 2013 at 6:44 pm |
    • Barking Up The Wrong God

      I won't bow to your evil ass hole of a god. You are a coward.

      May 22, 2013 at 6:56 pm |
    • Me

      Sounds like a po4n movie too me.

      May 22, 2013 at 9:49 pm |
    • Who is God's God

      Sounds like a pedophile case to me...

      May 23, 2013 at 10:12 am |
  20. Tully

    Boy, you atheists are going to be hating it when Obama gets impeached and the religious right wing conservative president movies into the White House! You'll be putting up with all kind of religious stuff whether do you like it or not and then all of the conservators we coming on CNN and busting your chops at at at I can hardly wait

    May 22, 2013 at 6:19 pm |
    • ..and for the good news;there is no Satan either !

      Maybe Fox will grow a pair and open up their comment thread.Once again-enjoy eight years of Hillary!Have an average day.LOL.

      May 22, 2013 at 6:25 pm |
    • QS

      Ah, I see...so when the government "targets" conservatives it's bad; when conservatives demand that government control those who think differently than they do, it's "god's" will?!

      LMFAO!

      May 22, 2013 at 6:37 pm |
    • Bubby

      I am curious, Tully. If you could have your druthers, what would you like to see happen to people who do not think as you do, yet were born in the US? Exile? Concentration camps? Execution?

      Freedom of religion means just that.

      Your writing implies your dislike of athiests, so it is likely you like those who believe in God... Just like you. To you, freedom extends to those who think like you. I don't want to believe the way you do. I like freedom, not facism.

      May 22, 2013 at 6:40 pm |
    • James Quinn

      Obama/Clinton 2016 It's the ladies turn! Get use to it it's going to be a rush!!! And it's inevitable my friend.

      Also you can't touch the current President Obama and this is like a gathering of insects noting more.

      Pagan jim

      May 22, 2013 at 6:44 pm |
    • Huskys Rule

      You should probably learn how to complete a proper sentence before posting stupidity like this.

      May 22, 2013 at 6:46 pm |
    • Eric

      I would say that the likelihood of Obama getting impeached is about as much as the likelihood of the existence of god. Probably not.

      May 22, 2013 at 7:02 pm |
    • CommonSensed

      Obvious troll fail.

      May 22, 2013 at 7:03 pm |
    • Observer

      Tully,

      If Bush wasn't impeached for starting a $2,000,000,000,000 war for false reasons that killed 4,000 Americans and wounded 30,000 more, then there is no basis for impeachment for President Obama.

      May 22, 2013 at 7:33 pm |
    • madmanmoses

      I can hardly wait!! more comedy material!!

      May 23, 2013 at 1:15 am |
    • madmanmoses

      nope sorry... joe biden would enter the white house....

      May 23, 2013 at 1:17 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.