The earthquake earlier this month in Haiti left nearly 2,000 dead and officials warn, the death toll could rise. It caused many people to wonder how could such devastation happen? Just a day after the quake, televangelist Pat Robertson offered this explanation for the calamity
. Robertson's claim is dubious and repellant. But, it does point to the way many people try to make sense of the presence of suffering – or evil - in the world. That's a particularly thorny issue for religious people.
Philosopher Stephen Asma helps us sort through some of these questions. Stephen Asma
teaches philosophy at Columbia College Chicago and is author of On Monsters: An Unnatural History of our Worst Fears.