I might have the distinction of being the only atheist blog not to post the story of the "Touchdown Jesus" monstrosity burning to the ground after being hit by lightning in Ohio. I really didn't have anything to add that wasn't covered exhaustively elsewhere. But now that it appears Christians are planning to rebuild a fireproof version of this eyesore at the cost of $250,000, I feel I must say something.
Some have interpreted the lightning strike as divine retribution, revealing some god's displeasure with idolatry. Others prefer to view the destruction as a sign that the "end times" are upon us.
Admittedly, many Christians are in an unenviable position on this one. They insist that their god is personally involved in human affairs, and they are quick to attribute natural disasters as sent by their god to punish evil. Now they have to figure out how to argue that this was not the case here. If it didn't make me so ashamed of the American educational system, it might be kind of fun to watch them squirm.
Christians, regardless of what they believe, have an opportunity here simply to set the matter aside, view the statue as a mistake, and get on with their lives. They could even use the money for something productive in their community. By squandering such an opportunity, they are sending a clear message to all who care to hear it.
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