The Westboro Baptist Church, the group that gained notoriety for picketing funerals of servicemen and recently Boston Marathon victims, has linked the Oklahoma tornado to Jason Collins's decision to come out and Kevin Durant's support of the decision.
NBA player Jason Collins, 34, who played with the NBA's Boston Celtics and Washington Wizards this season, became the first male athlete in US professional team sports to come out as gay. After he came out in April, Oklahoma City Thunder's Kevin Durant praised his courage and expressed support.
The Westboro Baptist Church says that the Moore, Oklahoma tornado was God venting his "wrath" against Durant for supporting Collins.
Fred Phelps Jr., the son of Westboro's leader Fred Phelps, 83, tweeted Monday that God "smashed" Oklahoma because Durant supported Collins.
"OK Thunder's Durant flips God by praising fag Collins. God smashes OK. You do the math. #FearGod #GodH8sFags #FagsDoomNations #GodH8sU"
"God's wonderful wrath in Oklahoma reminds me: #GodCursesUForFagMarriage #GodIsYourTerrorist #GodWillRepay #GodH8sU #GodAvengesHisPeople"
According to The Huffington Post, Westboro members have been praising and thanking God for "bringing his wrath" through the tornado:
"Amazing work of God! He promised this gift for a rebel nation! Jeremiah 23:19. See #tornado #Oklahoma."
“We’re only saying ‘you brought His wrath Oklahoma! Oklahoma, you’ll pay!’ #ThankGod for the tornadoes!"
As UPI notes this is not the first time that Christians promoting a "fundamentalist" interpretation of scriptures have blamed severe weather on homosexuality and "sin." The religious view that identifies God as the "divine terrorist" was expressed by Christian chaplain John McTernan in 2012 when he blurted out that Hurricane Sandy was God's punishment for the "homosexual agendas" of Mitt Romney and Barack Obama.
The famous televangelist Pat Robertson, also said last year that tornadoes were happening because Americans weren't praying hard enough. He said: "God didn't send the tornadoes. God set up a world in which certain currents interfere and interact with other currents. If enough people were praying, He would intervene. You could pray. Jesus stilled the storm. You could still storms.”
He also blamed the January 2010 earthquake in Haiti on what he said was the country's "pact with the devil."
Digital Journal reported that at least 91 people, including 40 children, died after a tornado tore through the Oklahoma City suburb of Moore, destroying hundreds of buildings, including two schools.
Children at the Plaza towers Elementary School in Moore sheltering in the basement were killed. Some of them are believed to have drowned when a water pipe burst.