New cases and hospitalizations due to COVID-19 in New York have consistently fallen the last few days, a sign that the peak may be behind us.
However, New York Governor Cuomo insists that people, not God, should get the credit for flattening the curve.
“God did not do that. Faith did not do that,” Cuomo said. “A lot of pain and suffering did that.”
Some observers have even compared Cuomo’s statements to the famous claim that “God himself” could not sink the Titanic.
Cuomo’s remarks come after highly publicized crackdowns on church members.
Church members in various communities were ticketed for attending drive-in services.
Officers were also instructed to record license plate numbers of churchgoers at Maryville Baptist Church.
The open hostility towards church members got the attention of Attorney General Bill Barr, who warned leaders to stop targeting the faithful and their First Amendment rights.
More details on Cuomo’s comments and the blowback below:
In his comments to the press, Governor Cuomo compared the flattening of the curve to weight loss.
Just as people are responsible for their weight, people are responsible for flattening the curve, Cuomo suggested.
The Christian Post has more details on Cuomo's attempt to take credit for the lowering of COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations:
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Monday that people, not God, are responsible for the fact that COVID-19 cases in his state have plateaued. His comment stirred reactions among some Christian leaders, including Franklin Graham.
Cuomo, a Catholic Democrat, told reporters on Monday while comparing society’s coronavirus response to being on a diet that the social distancing effort of people in his state is responsible for the plateauing of coronavirus cases.
As governor of the state that has been by far the most affected by the pandemic, Cuomo stressed that the number of new cases is down “because we brought the number down.”
“God did not do that. Faith did not do that. Destiny did not do that,” he stressed. “A lot of pain and suffering did that.”
The 62-year-old governor stated that the data is a “direct result of what we do.” He warned that if people “do something stupid,” the numbers will “go right back up tomorrow.”
“You get on the scale every morning. ‘I lost five pounds. I lost five pounds. I've lost five pounds.’ Oh, you're declaring that you have lost five pounds forever? No, [if] I lose self-discipline today and I go home and I eat like a horse and I'll get on that scale, it's going to give me a different number tomorrow,” Cuomo explained.
“And that's why we lost five pounds because we went out every day and we exercise and we burned more calories than we ate. That's how it works. It's math. And if you don't continue to do that, you're going to see that number go back up. And that will be a tragedy if that number goes back up.”
In an interview with CNN the next day, Cuomo reiterated his claim.
“Our behavior has stopped the spread of the virus,” he said. ”God did not stop the spread of the virus. And what we do, how we act, will dictate how that virus spreads.”
But it's not just New York Governor Cuomo who appears to be targeting the faithful,.
NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio has been openly critical of religion and even threatened to permanently close down places of worship for disobeying his lockdown orders.
Many observers say that his threat went too far and is a direct assault on religious freedom.
Governor Cuomo's brother, Chris Cuomo, also reported on a pastor dying from the coronavirus after saying that "God is larger than" COVID-19.
CNN's Don Lemon took the partisan push even further by claiming that the pastor's death should be a "lesson" for everyone.
According to Real Clear Politics, Lemon said:
Because it has hit their family. And you know how it is when it hits a family. Luckily your family at this moment better off, and it's going to stay that way, we know it will.
But let that be a lesson that you can have faith, but you also have to heed the warnings of the authorities and the people who -- and the experts. And so, I think that should be a lesson to people who are trying to gather, whether it's 10 or more people in places that you shouldn't do it.
God loves you. God wants you to praise Him and glorify Him and raise His name, but at this moment in our history, at this time, it's better if you do that at a distance. Socially distant. And that means at home or whether it's streaming or whatever, that you shouldn't be doing it.
So, I just say my heart goes out to that family. Bless them, but they should be a lesson to everyone out there who is trying to defy the authorities who are saying don't do it.
Two things can be true at once.
People can certainly be cautious to combat the spread, but God can definitely help us, too.
There are answered prayers in hospitals and God has unlimited ability to work in the crisis and to restore our nation in the future.
As Benjamin Watson, former NFL tight end said, "Bold statement from Gov. Cuomo..with millions praying, millions serving, and millions giving, motivated by their faith. In a time of such uncertainty a wise, humble and prudent man would at least hedge their bet and offer God a little bit of credit."