Satanists, Hindus want monuments on Oklahoma Capitol grounds

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  • John Pack Lambert of Michigan Ypsilanti, MI
    Jan. 11, 2014 7:31 p.m.

    Let everyone put up their monuments. We live in a pluralistic society and should let everyone put up monuments. People can chose to not look at what they don't like. Monuments hurt no one.

  • spring street SALT LAKE CITY, UT
    Dec. 17, 2013 12:13 p.m.

    So, Oklahoma doesn't have the money to build storm shelters for school children, but they have money for this?

  • A Scientist Provo, UT
    Dec. 17, 2013 6:37 a.m.


    That parts of many of the monuments in Washington, DC had religious influences does not justify continuing to breach the wall of separation today. After all, Jefferson owned and had adulterous relations with slaves. That would be a poor argument for continuing slavery and adultery today, right?

    Religious hegemony built up by Christian Dominionists must end in order for democracy and peace to prevail. By their own confessions, There is no compromise with religious zealotry.

  • Lagomorph Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 16, 2013 6:28 p.m.

    Isn't "Satan" essentially a Judeo-Christian construct (or at least Abrahamaic)? So Satanism can really be considered just another Christian denomination, albeit one with a decidedly different take on things. So the criticism that a monument to Satan isn't Christian strikes me as inaccurate. It's Christian, just not the "right" Christian.

    As spring street pointed out, the key point is that Oklahoma will either have to completely secularize the 10 commandments or admit representations of all other faiths. Neither option is a good one for the evangelicals. Rocks and hard places.

  • brokenclay Tempe, AZ
    Dec. 16, 2013 6:57 a.m.

    Religious monuments are not without precedent in our public buildings, including parts of many of the monuments in Washington, D.C., like the Library of Congress, the Washington Monument, the Lincoln Memorial, and the Jefferson Memorial. Many of the references go beyond a general theism to being overtly Judeo-Christian in content.

    It is interesting that the same fathers who shaped our Constitution did not find references like these to be inconsistent with the first amendment-- especially not Thomas Jefferson, the one who penned the famed (and misinterpreted) words, "separation of church and state," and who wasn't even in the country when the Bill of Rights were written. He explicitly disavowed any involvement in its composition. His monument says, "I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just, that his justice cannot sleep forever."

    What is really puzzling here is how a simple historical monument constitutes a violation of the establishment clause, especially one dedicated to a law system that contributed greatly to the formation of western society. When Hinduism can show how their gods have significantly contributed to western history, then maybe we can throw a monument up for them.

  • Schnee Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 15, 2013 12:47 p.m.

    "The ten commandments play an important role in our history. This country was not founded by satanists or hindus. While they may enjoy the priviledge in their freedom to worship what they want, they should not be allowed to put monuments in front of government buildings. Their ideals had nothing to do with the creation of those government buildings. "

    So there is a state religion. That's the only way you can say that only one particular faith should have monuments in front of gov't buildings.

  • Tyler D Meridian, ID
    Dec. 14, 2013 2:44 p.m.

    @Dragonlord67jg – “This country was founded on Christian principles.”

    The country was populated by a majority of Christians at the founding, true, but it was not founded on Christian principles.

    Rather it was founded on a combination of ideas ranging from Greek democracy, Roman Republicanism and the philosophical ideas sprung from the Enlightenment.

  • Moderate Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 14, 2013 1:23 p.m.

    Earlier this week, a Festivus Pole was erected at the Florida State Capitol. Festivus, a "religious" holiday created by a television show, gets recognition because Christians insisted on placing a nativity scene on state grounds.

    I suspect the good people of Oklahoma will relocate this monument rather than allow monuments to Satanism, Hinduism, and now Festivism.

  • spring street SALT LAKE CITY, UT
    Dec. 14, 2013 12:45 p.m.

    Interesting fact: Every case that has been decided in favor of 10 Commandment monuments, has been decided on the premise that the 10 Commandments are not religious in nature but are merely historical laws.

    Additionally, all the cases allowing the display of the 10 Commandments have stated that acknowledging the religious nature of the 10 Commandments while at the same time prohibiting other religious displays - regardless of how many people support those other religious displays - is a clear violation of the First Amendment.

    In order for Oklahoma to prevail in this, they will either have to deny any sacredness to the 10 Commandments and claim them as secular, or they will have to allow other religions the opportunity to display their monuments.

    Perhaps the Oklahoma legislators should actually read the cases they are citing?

  • Dragonlord67jg Tulsa, OK
    Dec. 14, 2013 12:40 p.m.

    @ Cedarite:

    'Separation of Church and State' does not exist in the constitution. Have you read President Jefferson's letter to the Danbury Baptist Association? That topic was about Jefferson's belief that the wall would protect religion from the state. However, we have seen recently the attack on Christianity by the government. Using your theory, christmas trees and lights should also be banned.

    From wikipedia: "Many modern Christmas customs have been directly influenced by such festivals, including gift-giving and merrymaking from the Roman Saturnalia, greenery, lights, and charity from the Roman New Year, and Yule logs and various foods from Germanic feasts."

  • Dragonlord67jg Tulsa, OK
    Dec. 14, 2013 12:15 p.m.

    @ Cedarite:

    Where in my post did you read that I stated there was an official state religion. However, knowledge of the Bible and the ten commandments did inform the drafters on their writing of the constitution, including the bill of rights. As a way to honor the influence of the Christian mindest, certain monuments, such as the ten commandments, should be allowed. The Greek style of democracy also played a role, and I see no problems with monuments honoring that influence.

    Dec. 14, 2013 12:12 p.m.

    The Satanic Temple - "It promised that the monument would be 'public-friendly' and something children could play on."

    Uh oh, now I'm curious what part of Satanic worship is 'public-friendly' and something children could play on? Is that satanic children or all children? It says they could play on it, but doesn't say it would be safe for children to play on! Is this like a phallic symbol with horns or maybe there are ten commandments of Satan?

    My, my, what a can of worms Oklahoma has opened!

  • Cedarite Cedar City, UT
    Dec. 14, 2013 11:59 a.m.

    Dragonord, the founding fathers specifically intended that there not be an official state religion. Evangelical style protestant Christianity is not the official national religion that enjoys dominion over and government enforced superiority over all others. Either all relgions have the right to place monumnents, or none do. This is the reason for separation of church and state, so that centuries of battling between Catholics and Prostestants and persecution of non Christians in Europe would not carry over and cause the endless violence and upheaval in peoples' lives in this new nation where everyone would be free to practice their religion without governmental interference or fear of trial, execution, harassment etc.

  • Hutterite American Fork, UT
    Dec. 14, 2013 11:32 a.m.

    It's hard to imagine they didn't see this coming. In the all or nothing world of religion, Oklahoma opted for one, but is going to get all. It's going to be a long, painful process to get back to where they should have stayed to begin with.

  • Dragonlord67jg Tulsa, OK
    Dec. 14, 2013 11:02 a.m.

    @ truth in all its forms :

    This country was founded on Christian principles. The ten commandments play an important role in our history. This country was not founded by satanists or hindus. While they may enjoy the priviledge in their freedom to worship what they want, they should not be allowed to put monuments in front of government buildings. Their ideals had nothing to do with the creation of those government buildings.

    Your name implies that you believe that there is more than one way to the truth. I can assure you, there is not. Jesus Christ is the only way and truth. May God bless you on your journey through life. I will be praying for you to see the Light(Jesus Christ) before it is too late.

  • george of the jungle goshen, UT
    Dec. 14, 2013 8:40 a.m.

    Belief is only what you can count on or depend on. I pledge my allegiance to the flag, of the United states of America and to the republic for which it stands. One Nation under God Indivisible, with Liberty and Justest for all.

  • Tyler D Meridian, ID
    Dec. 13, 2013 10:14 p.m.

    Or... the state should not allow any religious memorials.

    But no matter how you interpret the constitution, it's either all or nothing - allowing some and not allowing others clearly violates the 1st amendment.

  • truth in all its forms henderson, NV
    Dec. 13, 2013 8:21 p.m.

    the state should let everyone who wants a memorial to have one there. it shouldn't matter if the memorial is christian or not.