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FOREKNOW 6'?m2f Omniscience, omnipotence, evil in the world

LIZ -- (enters wearing business suit and police badge, carrying
binoculars, crosses quickly to far end of stage) We've got him!
We've finally got him! (looks down over edge of stage through
binoculars)

AMY -- (follows wearing business suit and police badge, carrying
radio) Can we be sure this is the same perp? (looks over edge in
same direction as Liz)

LIZ -- I would bet my badge on it! He picked a bank within two
blocks of the interstate. And they said he got out of a white
van... (points) There it is! He parked his white van in a
no-parking zone right in front of the bank! (offers binoculars,
takes radio)

AMY -- (looks through binoculars) You mean the telephone company
truck in front of the bank?

LIZ -- Yes. That's his M.O. (speaks into radio) Talk to me,
people! How are we doing on the roadblock and the traffic light
control? (listens to radio)

AMY -- How do you know which road to block?

LIZ -- (to radio) Ten-four. We're good to go. Keep your patrol
cars out of sight until after the perp passes Second Avenue. If
he follows his M.O. he'll be out of the bank in less than two
minutes. Then, he's coming your way. And remember, he's armed
and dangerous. (swaps radio for binoculars)

AMY -- You're only putting up one roadblock?

LIZ -- (looks through binoculars) I know this guy like I know my
own mother. When he comes out of the bank, he's going to make
his getaway in the white van and he's going to take the most
direct route to the interstate. As soon as he turns onto the
on-ramp, we've got him! (points) There he is! He's coming out of
the bank!

AMY -- (to radio) The perp is coming out of the bank.

LIZ -- He got into the van.

AMY -- (to radio) The perp is now in the white telephone company
van.

LIZ -- He's driving east on Eighth Street toward the interstate.

AMY -- (to radio) He's driving east on eighth street toward the
interstate.

LIZ -- Stop all cross traffic on Second Avenue.

AMY -- (to radio) Stop all cross traffic on Second Avenue.

LIZ -- Do I know this guy or what?!

AMY -- It's like you wrote the script for him. Did they stop the
cross traffic on Second Avenue as you planned?

LIZ -- Just like I planned. He'll be up to full speed when he
turns onto the on-ramp and his momentum will carry him right
into our trap. (points) He just turned onto the on-ramp.

AMY -- (to radio) Perp is entering the on-ramp. All units
converge on the road-block.

LIZ -- (swaps binoculars for radio) I lost sight of him. (to
radio) Talk to me people! (listens to radio)

AMY -- Did they get him?!

LIZ -- (finger to lips, pause) Ten Four. Perp gave up without a
struggle. Code four. (shouts) YeeHaa! (exiting) We got us a bank
robber!

AMY -- You know, I'm not sure you ought to send this perp to
jail.

LIZ -- (turns) Huh? What are you talking about?

AMY -- Well, you knew exactly what this guy was going to do
before he did it. You even knew what bank he was going to hit
next. I think his lawyer could make the case that because you
knew in advance what he was going to do, he didn't have any
choice.

LIZ -- You're kidding, right?

AMY -- Well, at the very least, you could have planted cops in
the bank and arrested him before he committed a felony. Some
might say that by letting him do something that you knew he
would do that YOU are responsible for his crime.

LIZ -- (pause) Oh. This is not about a guy who robbed 15 banks.
This is about our discussion on religion.

AMY -- Doesn't your vantage point here give you a little insight
into God's omniscience?

LIZ -- Omniscience. That's God's ability to know the future.

AMY -- Yes. You said that if God knew the future it's the same
as controlling the future. Do you still believe that?

LIZ -- Yes. No. Yes. Actually, I'm not so sure anymore.

AMY -- But what about the perp? Did he really have a choice in
the matter?

LIZ -- Well, sure! Just because he's predictable doesn't mean he
didn't have any choice in the matter. He merely chose to use the
same M.O. every time. Now that I think about it, God probably
knows his perps even better than I know mine. And I guess that's
the problem.

AMY -- What's that?

LIZ -- God knows his perps so well that he knows them better
than they know themselves. In fact, he knows them so well that
it looks like he's pulling the strings.

AMY -- So, do you still think God controls the future?

LIZ -- Well, sort of. Up here on the roof of this office
building I'm in the same kind of position as God. I know what
this guy is going to do next by what he's done in the past.

AMY -- But you could have posted armed policemen in the bank and
prevented the robbery. Yet, you chose to let him break the law.

LIZ -- I did, didn't I? But I had good reason to do it that way.
There were innocent civilians in the bank. Somebody could have
gotten hurt.

AMY -- Well, then, you could have trapped him at Second Avenue.
Some people down on the street might think it looked like the
cops were aiding and abetting the perp by stopping the cross
traffic.

LIZ -- You don't really believe that, do you?

AMY -- (pauses, smiles) Are you saying that there might be good
reason for God to allow evil to happen?

LIZ -- I hate it when you're right all the time.

AMY -- Just like you, God has to look out for the big picture.

LIZ -- We have no idea what the big picture is from His view
point, do we?

AMY -- I know I don't.

LIZ -- (pulls pager off belt) Oh, oh, my pager just went off.
(reads pager, exits) The chief of police wants to see me!
(sings) I Think I smell a promotion!

AMY -- (follows) I predicted that! Does that mean he had no
choice?

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