What's the most convincing thing that could happen to convince a small group of people holding bigoted views that those views are indeed blessed and chosen by God?

I'm trying to have a small growing religion with discriminatory social views (this is a late 20th century setting) suddenly gain faith when something which looks divine happens, reinforcing their ultra-bigoted views.

Importantly it's not really divine, just looks that way. And not a fraud, just some random event that causes a groups racist / sexist / homophobic / transphobic / etc views go from faith-based to basically-proven "fact".

Edit: I'm not looking for an opinion on what would convince you - I know some people are convinced by their toast burnt to look like Mary. I'm trying to work out what would fortify the beliefs of a decent group (say 500 people).

  • 2
    $\begingroup$ welcome to worldbuilding. "What's the most plausible thing" is entirely opinion based. I have seen people believing seeing some saint in a patch of moist on their wall or in a stain of ketchup on their T shirt. Our help center requires questions to be measurably answerable. $\endgroup$
    – L.Dutch
    Sep 25, 2020 at 10:59
  • $\begingroup$ I've changed this to "convincing". Rate of change in opinion is a certainty, right? $\endgroup$ Sep 25, 2020 at 11:06
  • $\begingroup$ To put things in perspective: What would it take to convince you that the Earth was flat? What about your neighbor? The guy sitting on the side of the street with a cardboard sign reading, "The end is nigh"? Different people have differing thresholds of believability. The "most convincing" thing to one person isn't evidence to another. $\endgroup$
    – Frostfyre
    Sep 25, 2020 at 12:38
  • $\begingroup$ Some magic toast with "Be racist" burnt into it might convince someone with a low bar, but I want to fortify the beliefs of a large group. Surely this isn't opinion based? $\endgroup$ Sep 25, 2020 at 13:07
  • $\begingroup$ @User12321313 the fact that I could answer "The "Be Racist" toast might convince people" is enough for it to be opinion based. How will you judge a best answer? if you could cherry pick any answer you might be too opinion based. $\endgroup$
    – IT Alex
    Sep 25, 2020 at 13:33

4 Answers 4


Cherry-picking correlation with natural disasters.

For example; here is a map of smoke over America at the exact moment you asked your question: enter image description here

And here is a The Guardians map of Rascism in America, based on racial slurs used in tweets after Obama got re-elected.
enter image description here

Conclusion, God blocks racists from damage in bushfires / wildfires. God is keeping your air clear while smiting the politically correct.

Do this a few times with a few natural disasters and you'll be convincing.

  • $\begingroup$ I like this - (and how did you find this in 10 minutes?) - but I was hoping for something a bit more flashy than a convincing powerpoint presentation of correlation. $\endgroup$ Sep 25, 2020 at 13:11
  • $\begingroup$ @User12321313 You'll need correlation to work out who god is targetting. Unless God is nice enough to wipe out every LGBT couple (or tuple - poly is a thing too) in a single precisely targeted meteor shower, or the stars re-arrange to simultaneously say "Build the wall" when viewed from USA and also "Stop the boats" when viewed from Australia. we're going to have to settle for spotting the pattern. (I had looked up racism patterns and smoke patterns recently and remembered there was a loose correlation) $\endgroup$
    – Ash
    Sep 25, 2020 at 13:16
  1. Historically speaking this question is entirely backwards, as in, totally, completely divorced from historical reality. People do not need convincing that foreigners are immoral lecherous untrustworthy thieves. Everybody knows that all foreigners are utterly depraved effeminated worthless tricksters who would steal your horse given the slightest chance.

    Note that "foreigner" does not necessarily mean "the subject of another king". The natural notion of "foreigner" is "somebody not from our village".

  2. Believe it or not, the emergence of racism was progress, even if in a slanted way. In the Antiquity there was no concept of human races; with the effect that everybody was an immoral depraved thieving foreigner. People from Athens believed that people from Boeotia (30 miles away) were stupid dullars (the word "Boeotian" was even used as an insult), people from Corinth (50 miles away) were weaklings, people from Sparta were uneducated louts and so on. (And of course all non-Greeks were barbarians, who couldn't even speak the only proper human language.)

    When the concept of human races emerged, at least people began thinking in terms of larger groupings which were somewhat related and sort-of less untrustworthy that other foreigners.

  3. As for "sexism", the concept didn't even exist before the modern age. I have no idea what the question is asking. Everybody knew that women are physically and mentally weaker than men, with unstable wandering minds and hearts, in constant need of supervision and guardianship; exceptions to this general rule, although numerous, were noted with great admiration, as if they were truly exceptional.


Sodom and Gomorrah

God has already demonstrated his prejudice pretty convincingly according to the Bible.

In Ezekiel 16:48–50, God compares Jerusalem to Sodom, saying "Sodom thy sister hath not done, she nor her daughters, as thou hast done, thou and thy daughters." He explains that the sin of Sodom was that "thy sister, Sodom, pride, fulness of bread, and abundance of idleness was in her and in her daughters, neither did she strengthen the hand of the poor and needy. And they were haughty, and committed abomination before me: therefore I took them away as I saw good."


I'm not a Bible student but I recall from schooldays that homosexualituy amongst men, was one of the abominations that God punished these cities for.

A judicious bit of smiting on God's part would soon get the message across.

As a test, your sect could round up people with a given prohibited disposition and force them to live in an encampment together and see if God smites them. If after a year they are unsmitten, they can be released to be replace by a different lot. (pun intended)


What's the most convincing thing that could happen to convince a small group of people holding bigoted views that those views are indeed blessed and chosen by God?

Severe Solar Storm


These are a people who mostly live apart and only go into town when necessary. They shun technology. They are rather like the Amish.

When a massive solar storm severely disrupts electricity supplies and electronic media of all kinds, the non-believers are thrown into chaos. They are so reliant on all their technology that life grinds to a halt. They can't even use mobile phones, radio, or TV.

There are riots and looting and general bad stuff.

The believers, reliant only on low-tech crafts and agriculture are not affected at all.

Clearly this is God's work.


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