Your friendly neighborhood pessimist, political philosopher, and debbie-downer checking in! Governor Abbot made a proclamation today, and I, for one, am very pleased that he has decided to stop overstepping and abusing his authority as governor. But I also “feel like I’m taking crazy pills.”
There is a major thing missing from his announcement: an admission that he was wrong for ever doing it, and an apology to the millions of Texans he’s sinned against, driven out of business, and whose livelihoods he’s ruined by his unjust abuse of power.
I’m completely willing to forgive him. (It’s particularly easy for me since I didn’t lose much of anything other than time as a result of his cowardly executive orders regarding covid.) I would hope that all Texans are willing to forgive him, even those who were really materially harmed by his actions. But forgiveness can only take place when there is an acknowledgment of guilt and wrongdoing.
Pretending as if there was no other option but shut downs and forced muzzling, or that his hands were tied during this whole thing, is spineless and it’s a lie.
When a man sins, he owns up to it and repents. He doesn’t accept the praise of the masses against whom he has sinned and pretend as if he’s doing those masses a huge favor by NOT continuing to abuse his power over them.
This new executive order will go into effect on March 10. (The very fact that it’s March 10 and not “right the hell now” is proof that he doesn’t understand or feel remorse for the violations of rights he’s committed against Texans). The original state-wide lockdown started on March 31. That’s 344 days of abuse of power. 344 days!
In his statement he said, “If businesses want to limit capacity or implement additional safety protocols, they have the right to do so. It is their business, and they get to operate their business the way they want to. At this time, however, people and businesses don’t need the state telling them how to operate.” Where was that kind of talk 344 days ago, gov? The literally thousands of restaurateurs, performers, teachers, retailers, baristas, etc. etc. etc. who have lost their jobs and a year of their lives and careeers would’ve loved to hear those words 344 days ago.
Defense of freedom only really matters if you continue to defend it in the hard times when people are attacking it and asking, “Is freedom really worth it?” That’s when you need to stand up and say “Yes.” Not after 344 days of cowering in the corner saying, “I guess it’s not as important as safety.”
And his statement also said the new executive order “rescinds MOST of the earlier executive orders.” MOST! You just don’t get it Greg… you just don’t get it.
The nearest analogy I can think of is an abusive husband saying, “I’ll never hit you again,” and on top of that, doesn’t even ask forgiveness for the previous beatings. Even if he does “never again” lay a finger on his wife, he still hasn’t done all he needs to do. He needs to beg for her forgiveness.
Do I mean to trivialize spousal abuse by this analogy? No.
Is this analogy mildly inappropriate because of its visceral content and seeming trivialization of spousal abuse? Yes.
Is this an accurate analogy for the current situation? Also yes!
Governor Abbott sinned against his citizens and he needs to admit that and ask their forgiveness.
Is it our Christian responsibility to forgive him if he repents? Yes.
Does that mean we have to trust him, or the rest of the members of the Texas Government, or give any of them another term in office? Definitely not.
Today isn’t a day for rejoicing. It’s a day for somber reflection, and it’s a reminder to all Christian Texans to resolve constantly to fight to reduce the size and scope of merely human governmental power, and to fight for freedom for all Texans, until the day we die or our Lord returns, whichever comes first.