Godless Oklahoma Removes Ten Commandments

Godless Oklahoma Removes Ten Commandments

Godless Oklahoma Removes Ten Commandments

The Capitol Preservation Commission on Tuesday authorized a state agency to remove the Ten Commandments monument from the Capitol grounds to comply with a court order.

The action came despite allegations from former Rep. Mike Reynolds that the meeting was illegal. Reynolds also said the court order directing its removal is not legal.

Linda Edmondson, a senior member of the panel, presided. She is the wife of former Oklahoma Attorney General Drew Edmondson.

The vote was 7-1 with one member, Lou Kerr, abstaining. Leia Laird cast the lone no vote.

John Estus, a spokesman for the Office of Management and Enterprise Services, said his agency will meet with the builder who installed it to come up with a removal plan.

The monument was donated by Rep. Mike Ritze, R-Broken Arrow, and his family. Ritze could not be reached for comment.

It was not immediately known where the monument would be taken, Estus said.

The Office of Management and Enterprise Services will also discuss the matter with the Oklahoma Highway Patrol, which has some concerns, Estus said.

“The Oklahoma Highway Patrol has concerns about individuals or groups interfering with the removal or tampering with the monument,” Estus said.

A fence erected for Capitol repair purposes was extended Monday to restrict access, Estus said.

A man with a mental illness last year drove a vehicle into the monument, knocking it to pieces. It was quickly reinstalled.

The ACLU of Oklahoma brought suit on behalf of three plaintiffs who challenged its placement on state property.

The Oklahoma Supreme Court on June 30 ruled the privately funded monument was religious in nature and violated the Oklahoma Constitution. Supporters had argued it was historical.

 

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