The Oklahoma Eagle Editorial
Oklahoma GOP Out Of Touch With Citizens
It is not because the Republican party sees a different solution for common problems than that of Democrats. It is just so wrong-headed when it comes to people of color. That is a given and not that revealing. What is startling is how detached the leadership of the GOP is from those realities. It seems they do not connect how their insatiable need for power and their obvious attempts to protect it are paramount. Our Federal government is attacked and overrun, and our congressional delegation cannot find any fault. It is getting ridiculous.
Tulsa Mayor G.T. Bynum flat blew it when he succumbed to republican pressure to remove Black Lives Matter from Greenwood. Not just any street, but the most famous street in Oklahoma. The scene of the 1921 Tulsa Race Massacre is now the scene of totally unnecessary racism at a time the city is attempting to show racial reconciliation and progress. Tulsa shoots itself in the foot and they still do not understand. By the way, no other city has erased or ground up their Black Lives Matter artwork. Many cities painted them on the street using city funds and their cities have guarded them. Tulsa placed a guard on the street to prevent painting anything on the street to promote Black Lives Matter. Naturally, Tulsa and GOP leaders and some bureaucrats gave some weak excuses for spending $300,000 to ground up the words Black Lives Matter in the middle of the night. The tragic part of this treatment is that the City of Tulsa does not even know they are wrong.
Governor Kevin Stitt, one of impeached President Donald J. Trump’s most loyal supporters was quick to carry his water on Covid-19 policies. That said he was quick to open Oklahoma up for business before health experts were comfortable with. The results were some of the highest infection rates in the nation. Stitt and Bynum were enthusiastic hosts for Trump’s first political rallies that was largely maskless. Stitt eventually came down with Covid and was able to recover. Not so lucky for Herman Cain the conservative talk show host who died from his symptoms. The rally was one of the first super spreader events in the country and Tulsa saw its numbers spike after the unnecessary event. Stitt also listen to some old Indian fighters in state government and decided to go to war with Oklahoma tribal nations. With the law on the side of the tribes Stitt has lost over tribal gaming and the landmark McGirt federal lawsuit that saw the Muskogee Creek Nation win a legal battle over their sovereign rights. The governor and his efforts to bully the tribes has seen so much of his efforts blow up in this face. So much of his problems are self-inflicted and did not have to happen.
Republicans need to learn how to talk to all the citizens and drop the bully techniques and bringing a heavy bat to every challenge. The GOP in Texas is now wrestling with their own public image problems. Texas is suffering from lost of electricity and historically cold temperatures. Their governor Greg Abbot has dropped the ball on their state-wide loss of power over millions of Texans. Some have been without electricity and heat since Monday. Texas Senator Ted Cruz seeing the problem his state is going through decided the thing to do is fly to Cancun Mexico for a sunny vacation while his state suffers. Stitt not to be outdone spent the first part of the blizzard skiing in Santa Fe, NM. He like Cruz rushed back once they learned their trips were not looked at as profiles in courage.
Of course, there will always be those state lawmakers who are continually looking for ways to find punitive ways to deal with the immigration problems. State Sen. Nathan Dahm, a republican from Broken Arrow is again proposing a bill to prohibit the establishment of sanctuary cities in Oklahoma. Some city police departments want no part in joining federal efforts to find immigrants and remove them. Dahm would punish those cities who do not actively go after immigrants who are in America with proper documentation by cutting off state funds. Of course, that is wrong-headed and lacks basic compassion. The new administration is looking at new ways to address this crisis.
Oklahoma and Texas may need to embrace a different kind of leadership because the GOP cannot seem to stop making problems worse while their citizens suffer. Crises expose the meddle of the leadership in revealing and painful ways.
No Heat For Some Residents Made The Crisis Worse
For hundreds who lived near 36th Street North and Hartford the brutal weather was made worse when the gas was out. No heat and no cooking for those in that area. Oklahoma Natural Gas, understanding the seriousness of the situation, had crews working to restore gas to the affected areas. Hats off to them for their fast response.
In the era of Covid-19 the term essential worker took on a new meaning and in times like these, they are absolutely essential. Tulsa has crews working over 100 water breaks throughout the city and are doing so in dangerous conditions.
Law enforcement, fire crews, linemen, plumbers, air and heat professionals are all doing their best in dangerous conditions. They are to be commended for rising to the occasion in this epic battle to save lives and bring comfort to the afflicted.
Covid and other health problems have not taken a holiday during these days of historically cold weather, Health workers have made it to work to make sure Tulsans receive the care they need.
Important to recognize all those doing their best during the worst of times. We salute them.