Texas Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick deleted a scheduled tweet on Sunday after people saw it as targeting the LGBT community following the deadly attacks in Orlando. In Orlando, a shooter opened fire in a gay bar, a cornerstone of LGBT culture, and killed fifty people while injuring fifty-three more. It is the deadliest mass shooting in American history.
Patrick tweeted a graphic of Galatians 6:7, which reads, “Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows.” Twitter users interpreted his tweet as Patrick saying that the victims, due to them being gay or lesbian, deserved what happened.
Patrick has been outspoken in his opposition to same-sex marriage and viewed the Supreme Court’s decision to legalize it across the country as an attack on religious liberty.
The tweet originally stayed up for a few hours before being deleted by Patrick’s social media team. Spokesman Allen Blakemore said in a statement, “Regarding this morning’s scripture posting on social media, be assured that the post was not done in response to to last night’s tragedy. The post was designed and scheduled last Thursday.”
“The Lt. Governor is traveling out of the country, but our social media team has deleted the posts and graphics. We regret the unfortunate timing of these posts and ask everyone to join us in praying for the people of Orlando in this awful time.”
Patrick’s social media team regularly posts Bible quotes on Sunday.
The Lieutenant Governor himself followed up with a lengthy Facebook statement that focused on Christianity and ISIS. “The enemy is ISIS, not each other. We must come together to fight them. ISIS believes in the killing of gays. America does not and Christians do not. Let’s focus on the real enemy.”