It was a shock to me to hear on the radio news on October 6 that during the night, reportedly at 10:30 p.m., crews with Highway Patrol guards moved onto the grounds of the State Capitol and removed a granite monument showing the Ten Commandments. The reported reason for the sneaky night removal was to preclude the presence of protesters and demonstrations.
Shades of the former Mayor of Chicago who, in violation of federal law, ordered heavy equipment and a police escort to move onto the now former Meigs Airport at 2:30 in the morning to tear up the runway. This despite the presence of a number of airplanes parked on the ramp (tarmac). He had previously threatened to close the airport, reportedly because his wife wanted a large park to be there. However, the FAA reminded him that the airport had received aircraft fuel tax grants of several millions of dollars with a contractual obligation to keep it open for at least 20 years. There has been a long history in Chicago of officials placing themselves above all laws. For those not familiar with the situation, the monument was placed by the family of Rep. Dr. Mike Ritze, R-Broken Arrow, at their sole cost and expense. It was replaced at their sole cost and expense after some anti-Christian destroyed the first one with his automobile. There have been no reports surfacing of any prosecution activities against him.
The ACLU (receiving federal funds) had brought suit against the state to the Oklahoma Supreme Court on the basis that its existence on state property was a violation of the state constitution in which a clause prohibits religious expenditures by the state on state property. By a majority of seven to two, the court ordered its removal, but Governor Mary Fallin ordered it to stay, pending all appeals. To her credit, the acting Republican state chairwoman had publicly offered to have it placed on the front lawn of the party headquarters a few blocks north of the Capitol.
Publicly the most vociferous objectors and protesters of the monument have been members of the atheist religion and CAIR, which information reports has been declared an Islamic terrorist support organization by a federal government department. In my opinion, the seven court judges made a huge stretch of judgment to arrive at the decision, possibly in violation of their oaths of office. After all, the Ten Commandments lie at the basis of all civil laws in the United States, as well as in Great Britain and many of the nations of Europe.
As a mea culpa, my residence is in the district represented by Dr. Ritze and he also is my personal physician and flight surgeon, a friend and fellow Christian. So, it could be considered that I also have “a dog in this fight.” I am reminded of my feelings while living in the Denver area where large numbers of people had moved from the East Coast and Illinois large cities. They supposedly wanted out from the crowded and uncomfortable conditions to the more relaxed (with more elbow room) West. They began pushing for the street food vendors, ells (trains) and subways of their former homes. Some in my circle of acquaintances pushed very hard for the changes.
My feelings then and are now for those who have come here from other nations, particularly of Islam, is that “you have come here, don’t move to change us. If you don’t like our ways, then go back there. Otherwise learn our ways and adapt to them as the millions who have come before have done. I remain highly offended by those reported areas where there is full Muslim population that is enforcing Sharia law which is substantially in violation of the U.S. and state constitutions as well as local laws.
Three of the judges are up for retention next year and two voted to remove the monument.