While American citizens try their best to take every precaution possible to halt the pandemic spread of coronavirus, Kevin Stitt, Governor of Oklahoma, shared a tweet on Saturday night that infuriated users online. In the since-deleted tweet, Governor Stitt, a conservative Republican, shared a selfie with two of his six kids, dining at the extremely crowded The Collective Kitchen and Cocktails restaurant in Oklahoma City.
He captioned the picture, “Eating with my kids and all my fellow Oklahomans at the @CollectiveOKC. It’s packed tonight! #supportlocal #OklaProud.” While Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the World Health Organization (WHO) implore people to wash their hands and to practice “social distancing,” which means purposely avoiding highly populated areas to prevent spreading the deadly coronavirus, it appeared that the Oklahoma governor missed the memo.
Fox 23 News reporter Tiffany Alazniz was quick to call Stitt out on Twitter. She wrote, “Oklahoma has 4 confirmed positive coronavirus cases. At least 37 cases awaiting test results. Tonight Governor Kevin Stitt posted this picture and faced major criticism within the state and nationally. It’s deleted now. I’ve reached out to his office for comment. #Oklahoma.”
Stitt, 47, originally from Milton, Florida, became the governor of Oklahoma in 2019. On Thursday, after learning of three local residents testing positive for coronavirus, he held a press conference and asked people not to “panic or overreact.” He said, “At this point, state officials say the three patients are in isolation and that there is no sign of community spread,” Stitt said. “The State of Oklahoma remains calm, steady, and proactive in our response.”
On Saturday night, the Mayor of Hoboken, New Jersey, announced the city would be shutting down all restaurants and bars to combat coronavirus, which was a far cry from what Governor Stitt was doing on March 14.
As stated on The Collective’s website, it features 9 kitchens, a coffee shop, a 40-foot bar, an outdoor 95-person rooftop patio and bar — it’s a massive restaurant.
Governor Stitt Encouraged Schools In Oklahoma To Stay Open During Coronvirus
While 18 states across America have temporarily shut down schools to prevent the coronvirus from rapidly spreading, Stitt has encouraged them to remain open.
During Thursday’s press conference he said, “We are working with schools all across our state to evaluate the developing situation on a day-by-day basis. We want to stress that, at this time, it is important we remain calm, and be judicious in decisions to close schools and businesses. It is the state’s recommendation that schools remain open.”
However, Oklathoma State University, Stitt’s alma mater, rebuked his campaign. OSU, announced that students on the Stillwater and Tulsa campuses would switch to online classes for two weeks following Spring Break, from March 23 through April 3.
OSU put out a written statement saying, “While today there remains no known cases directly linking COVID-19 to our Stillwater and Tulsa campuses, it has become evident in the past couple of days that we must do our part at Oklahoma State University to help prevent the spread of this virus by taking prudent steps to protect our campuses. Your safety and well-being must be priority number one.”
Governor Stitt Attended The Oklahoma Youth Expo On March 13
It seems that Governor Sitt, who’s been married to wife Sarah Stitt for 20 years, is not worried about coronavirus. On March 13, the same day President Donald Trump declared America to be in a state of “national emergnecy,” he headed out to a crowded livestock show.
Governor Stitt’s obvious non-compliance with coronvirus precautions had one user online calling for him to be fired.