In the wake of extreme flooding in her state, South Dakota Republican Governor Kristi Noem has done something that may well amount to nothing — declaring Sunday, April 7 a “Statewide Day of Prayer,” notes Friendly Atheist’s Hemant Mehta.
And she’s not alone. Fellow Republican governors Doug Burgum (North Dakota), Kim Reynolds (Iowa), and Pete Ricketts (Nebraska) are all calling this a day of prayer.
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Flooding and extreme weather has impacted thousands of South Dakotans. Today, please join me in praying for the well-being of our first responders and all those who’ve been affected by the storms. By the grace of God, we will emerge from this stronger than ever. #DayofPrayer pic.twitter.com/YopmkUoYwt
— Governor Kristi Noem (@govkristinoem) April 7, 2019
“In the last few weeks, South Dakota has been deeply impacted by extreme weather and severe flooding,” Noem said in a statement. “As a result of these storms, many communities have been left with destroyed roads, bridges, and culverts, stranded livestock, and flooded homes.”
“This coming Sunday, I am asking South Dakotans to join me in praying for the well-being of our state, our first responders, and all those who’ve been affected by this disaster,” she continued. “By the grace of God, our communities will emerge from this challenge stronger than ever.”
Mehta couldn’t help but note that God allegedly caused the disaster to begin with.
And Noem’s sentiments here are especially obnoxious when you consider the fact that she is a noted climate change denier, Organizing for Action (OFA) reports. In 2010, while serving in the state House, she voted for HR 1009, a measure that pushed public schools to teach kids climate change was merely a theory, not settled science.
Mehta found this especially ridiculous because the original version of the bill, which Noem also voted for, claimed “astrological forces” and “cosmological forces” were impacting climate change.
So, of course, it fits that Noem would think prayer, as opposed to actually addressing climate change will do the trick.
And The Progressive Secular Atheist’s Michael Stone notes this empty and futile gesture will do nothing to help those whose lives have been ruined by the lethal weather in South Dakota.
But then doing nothing in times of crisis isn’t unusual for most Republicans — their favorite mantra is “thoughts and prayers.” Perhaps we can return the favor when the 2020 national election comes up.
By giving them our “thoughts and prayers.”