In a Tuesday night prayer meeting, Tennessee Christian conservative pastor Perry Stone blamed the spread of coronavirus on marriage equality, abortion access, and the Democratic Party.
Stone told those in attendance that the pandemic is part of a “reckoning.”
“There’s a reckoning because the courts of the land passed a law to take an infant’s life, that it was okay, and for marriage, that we have known it, to be changed into something we’ve never known,” Stone said.
“Both of their laws – biblically in Leviticus and Deuteronomy – are what God calls an abomination[….] There will be a time when the Lord says, ‘Enough is enough.'”
Perry Stone says the coronavirus outbreak is a "reckoning" on America for abortion and gay marriage. pic.twitter.com/a9yyawwCzn
— Right Wing Watch (@RightWingWatch) March 18, 2020
Stone’s beliefs are outlandish for a number of obvious reasons, but it’s worth noting that same-sex marriage is not even legal in China, Italy, or Iran — the three countries that have been hit hardest by coronavirus.
Stone also said he believed it was no coincidence that some of the areas in the United States hit hardest by the virus are the California districts of Democratic Rep. Nancy Pelosi (D) and Rep. Adam Schiff (D), as well as the state of New York, the home state of Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D).
He continued, “We know coronavirus will go to West Virginia sooner or later… but isn’t it strange that the state that voted Trump in by 68%, the biggest state that voted in him, has no virus.”
Imitating the nasal voice he thinks his critics sound like, he said, “You say, ‘Preacher, you’re getting way out there, you’re getting weird.'”
“No,” he responded to this imaginary critic. “I’m prophetic and prophetic people are strange.”
Shortly after Stone made this claim, West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice (R) announced the first confirmed case of coronavirus in West Virginia. It is generally believed that the only reason it has taken this long for West Virginia to report a case is due to lack of testing.
As of Monday, Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV) told CNN, there had only been 84 tests conducted in the state, and he has asked the Trump administration to increase West Virginia’s access to testing.
“I have over 720,000 elderly,” he said. “I’ve got over 220,000 that are critically ill under 60 years of age.”
“If you put all this together, of the 1,800,000 people [who live in West Virginia], I have over a million that could be absolutely, totally devastated by this virus if it hits.”