Last night, no doubt exhausted from a week of hiding from and insulting his constituents, Senator Steve Daines settled down to tweet about his most important priority: protecting the interests of the NRA:
— Steve Daines (@SteveDaines) February 25, 2018
Daines is upset because Delta joined a growing number of companies who realized that a continued relationship with an organization that increasingly resembles the Brownshirts of 1920s Germany was bad for business and announced a decision to stop offering discounted rates.
It’s instructive to contrast the ire Daines showed over a perceived slight to the NRA with the concern he showed after another mass shooting at a school. Following the tragedy at Parkland, Daines offered little more than a pro forma expression of his thoughts and prayers for those affected:
Praying for the victims and their families. Thank you to those responding to this afternoon’s terrible shooting in Florida.
— Steve Daines (@SteveDaines) February 14, 2018
Following the November mass shooting in Sutherland Springs:
Cindy & I join the nation in praying for the victims in Sutherland Springs, their families & first responders.
— Steve Daines (@SteveDaines) November 6, 2017
Following the mass killing in Las Vegas:
Waking up to the horrifying news out of Vegas — I’m praying for the victims, their families and the brave first responders.
— Steve Daines (@SteveDaines) October 2, 2017
When contrasted with the rote expression of prayer for the victims of one mass killing after another, Daines seemed almost human in his response to Delta last night, and most importantly, actually said he would take action instead of offering empty words. There was no promise from Senator Daines after Parkland, Sutherland Spring, Las Vegas, or any of the other sites of horrific carnage to do anything about a country that makes it easier to get a weapon of war than access to healthcare, but when a small discount for NRA members flying was threatened, our Senator leapt to call for action.
For a many who offers so many prayers after these tragedies, Senator Daines seems not to have read the Book of James, which reminds us in 2:26 that faith without works is meaningless:
For as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also.
The failure of Senator Daines to act doesn’t just signal the death of faith but ensures that more Americans will die before their time, more families will grieve over the bodies of loved ones, and more parents and students will be gripped by fear that not even their schools will be safe.
What kind of person is moved to act to protect either his airline discount or his paymasters at the NRA but not children in schools, parishioners in their churches, or fans at a concert? Another verse I’d recommend Senator Daines receives gives us some insight. From Matthew 7:20:
Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them.
With every empty tweet, we know you just a little bit better, Senator Daines and the bitter fruit of your inaction will grow into a movement to replace you with a Senator with the moral courage to speak for all Montanans.