The Ten Commandments monument that used to be on the state capital grounds of Oklahoma and was the subject of numerous legal battles has gone. Under cover of night, workers removed the monument and took it to its new home outside the offices of a conservative public policy analysis group known as the Oklahoma Council of Public Affairs. The deadline given by the judge for removal was October 12.
Why this was done so stealthily in the middle of the night, which would have meant paying overtime for the workers?
The Oklahoma Highway Patrol had increased security around the monument earlier Monday, and barriers were erected to keep visitors from getting close to it. Estus said the decision to remove the monument under the cover of darkness was made to avoid disturbing workers at the Capitol and to keep protesters from demonstrating while heavy equipment was being used to detach the two-ton monument from its base.
“We wanted it to be done as quickly and efficiently as possible, and doing it at night gave us the best opportunity to do that,” Estus said. “The Highway Patrol was also very concerned that having it in the middle of the day could lead to having demonstrations of some kind.”
Supporters are vowing revenge.
Former state Rep. Mike Reynolds, a Republican who voted to authorize the monument, was one of just a handful of supporters who watched as the monument was removed Monday night.
“This is a historical event,” Reynolds said. “Now we know we have to change the Constitution. It would be good to get rid of some of the Supreme Court justices, too.”
Several conservative legislators have promised to introduce a resolution when the Legislature convenes in February to send to a public vote an amendment that would remove the article of the constitution that prevents the use of public money or property for religious purposes.
These people sure love their religious monuments.