Why does special providence allow all the
crimes? Why are the wife-beaters protected, and why are the wives
and children left defenseless if the hand of God is over us all?
Who protects the insane? Why does Providence permit insanity? But
the church cannot give up special providence. If there is no such
thing, then no prayers, no worship, no churches, no priests. What
would become of National Thanksgiving? You know we have a custom
every year of issuing a proclamation of thanksgiving. We say to
God, “Although you have afflicted all the other countries, although
you have sent war, and desolation, and famine on everybody else, we
have been such good children that you have been kind to us, and we
hope you will keep on.” It does not make a bit of difference
whether we have good times or not — the thanksgiving is always
exactly the same.
Robert Green Ingersoll – “Orthodoxy”(1884)