Oklahoma Gov. Kevin Stitt is finally announcing a plan to deal with COVID: He’s calling on everyone in the state to pray and fast and… nothing else. That’s it.
This comes in response to the state hitting the disturbing milestone of nearly 200,000 positive cases of the virus and nearly 1,750 deaths.
The Republican issued the utterly useless and arguably unconstitutional proclamation yesterday:
“Oklahomans have always turned to prayer to guide us through trials and seasons of uncertainty, and I am asking Oklahomans of all faiths and religious backgrounds to join together with me on Thursday,” said Gov. Stitt. “I believe we must continue to ask God to heal those who are sick, comfort those who are hurting and provide renewed strength and wisdom to all who are managing the effects of COVID-19.”
It is quintessentially Republican of Stitt, who has done so little to help the people in his state, to ask God to help them instead.
The official proclamation also includes a reference to 2 Chronicles 7:14: “If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.”
That bit of the Bible comes shortly after a section when King Solomon sacrifices nearly 150,000 animals to appease God.
It’s also an awful verse to cite, since it suggests the people are doing something wrong, which is why God sent COVID, and why the people need to stop being “wicked.” The people of Oklahoma aren’t the problem here. Put the blame where it deserves: on a conservative administration that has resisted a statewide mask mandate despite multiple COVID waves.
You would think he would’ve learned his lesson when it comes to asking God to fix the COVID crisis considering he did that back in March, when he declared a “Statewide Day of Prayer” and also promoted and appeared at a church service that included several Christian leaders from across the state.
Needless to say, the same God who presumably allowed the virus to spread and kill people isn’t about to change course because Oklahoma’s Christians decided to hijack the governor’s signature to shove Jesus in everyone’s face.
Like that church service, this proclamation is, at best, a waste of time. At worst, it’s a government official using his office to promote religion while neglecting to take actions that could actually help the state.
Stitt should not be spending any time advertising Christianity right now. That’s not going to help anyone. If anything, Christians who have gathered for indoor, mask-optional church services have exacerbated our national emergency.
Stitt is a wannabe pastor who spends his time in the place where a governor ought to be. Instead of helping the people in his state, he’s offering prayer, the last resort of people who have nothing better to offer. At least in his case, there’s plenty he could do. He just won’t.
The COVID body count in Oklahoma is bound to get higher because the majority of voters foolishly elected a religious zealot instead of someone competent. That was apparent earlier this year. It’s even more clear now.
The “Oklahoma Day of Prayer and Fasting” takes place on Thursday. If you blink, you’ll miss it.
(Portions of this article were published earlier. Thanks to everyone for the link)