Dispatches from the Creation Wars

The Rain Prayer Worked!

Kevin Williamson tries to defend Texas Gov. Rick Perry’s day of prayer for rain by using snark:

Because American politics is stupid, Perry has been in the national news of late because, in the midst of a drought, he suggested that the people of Texas say a prayer for rain. This has been a source of mirth for some of the more secular-minded pontificators — you know the sort: “Flying Spaghetti Monster” jokes and such.


Yes, those people. You know, people who think rationally.

1. If you’ve ever seen a drought in Texas, prayer might not seem like an unreasonable response. I might ask: Got a better plan?

Well no, no I don’t. I also don’t have a better plan than throwing salt over your shoulder, doing rain dances or sacrificing goats to the rain god. But the notion that any of those things actually changes the weather remains idiotic.

2. There is a long and charming history of prayers for rain in my part of the world. I remember going home once after a long while away and, driving in from the airport (the Lubbock International Airport), seeing a group gathered in a field to pray, and thinking that those petitioners were a pretty good symbol of the difference between a place like West Texas and the Northeast or the West Coast.

Yes, human stupidity does indeed have a long history. I don’t see how that makes such stupidity any more justified though.

3. I note that while they may pray for rain, the local farmers still build high-tech irrigation systems. The Lord helps those who help themselves.

I’ll take unsupported assertions for $1000, Alex.

4. It rained.

Why yes, yes it did. Just like it was predicted to do before the day of prayer. If I offer a dead hamster to the Sun God and pray for the sun to rise tomorrow, it doesn’t mean I get to claim credit for the sun rising tomorrow.