Oklahoma Senator proposes bringing historically controversial statues and monuments to Oklahoma

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OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – An Oklahoma senator is proposing bringing monuments and statues taken down in other states to the Sooner State, but not everyone is on board with the idea.

 “I think it’s a terrible idea to say the least,” said David Jones, who lives in OKC metro.

Oklahomans are reacting to a controversial proposal from State Senator Casey Murdock.

“I’m expecting to get beat up on this,” Murdock said.

 Murdock is proposing bringing recently removed historical statues and monuments to Oklahoma– statues that are being targeted by protestors across the country

“Probably what broke my heart the most was them going after Abraham Lincoln. He was the president that freed the slaves. Then they destroyed the statue of Ulysses S. Grant,” Murdock said.

 The senator referring to a move to bring down statues of President Lincoln in both Boston and Washington D.C.

There’s also an effort to remove a statue of Ulysses S. Grant, the Union army general, in San Francisco.

 Murdock would like to set up a sanctuary in northwest Oklahoma and the panhandle for what he calls the historical artwork. He says no taxpayer funds would be used.

“Three generations from now are we gonna rewrite history or delete that part of American history? How are we going to teach our kids three generations from now without saying this is a black mark in our nation’s history,” Murdock said.

But there are mixed reactions to the idea.

“I think it’s great. It’s our country’s history. We can’t change our history,” said Mary Goehring, who lives in OKC metro. “Obviously things have changed nowadays. But it’s stuff that I think people need to talk about and remember. The good, the bad.”

“I think it shows poor judgement and lack of awareness in the country, not just from a statehood standpoint,” said Jones.

Black Lives Matter Oklahoma City sent News 4 this statement in response to the proposal-

 

“Gee whiz, Senator Murdock! You have a very interesting take on history and how to teach it. You want to enshrine traitors to this nation and celebrate their willingness to go to war to preserve enslaving over 14 percent of our citizens – just because they were black! And you say the reason is to preserve our history.

I find that curious. Do we erect statues of King George III to remind us that we fought the British government to form a free nation?

Will you make space for a statue of the colonists who sided with the British – their rightful sovereigns – and against the upstart colonials and fought to keep the colonies as possessions of their lord and king?

Where is the statue honoring Benedict Arnold? He was an honorable man who betrayed the colonials in favor of their legal government, just like the Confederates did. What about him?

While you’re at it, let’s create monuments to other Americans (Domestic Terrorists) who have attacked the government. Can we start with Timothy McVeigh and Terry Nichols?  Of course, their murderous actions brutally stole lives of 168 people and devastated the people of Oklahoma and this nation with their act of hate, as compared to the 618,222 brave soldiers who were lost in the Civil War — 360,222 from the North and 258,000 from the South — by far the greatest toll of any war in American history. Maybe just little statues, perhaps?

We would ask Senator Murdock whether he would enjoy having such a statue in his own town – whether such an atrocity would bring forth feelings of pride, or whether it would serve as a constant reminder of the hatred and pain that a fellow citizen would gladly wreak upon him and his family members. Then I would ask him to consider the feeling of the millions of Americans of African descent, the people whose ancestors suffered as chattel slaves under the Confederate States of America – and I would ask him to place himself in their position and reconsider those statues. And whether his neighbors would join him in welcoming those reminders of hatred into their own daily lives.

No, Senator Casey Murdock. The people of Oklahoma and the people of the United States are better and smarter than that. We recognize our mistakes. We know our history. We know that

  • The Confederate States of America lasted a mere 5 years – a mere moment, albeit a painful one, in the history of this nation.
  • The Confederacy represents one of the ugliest and most vicious aspects of the history of this nation. It is to be corrected and mourned, not celebrated.
  • This nation must move forward. Removal of confederate statues is not erasing its history, it is recognizing it and taking the necessary step to remove monuments to the ugly stain of racism and oppression which has burdened it for hundreds of years.

We do not need to glorify our mistakes to avoid repeating them. Black lives matter, Senator Murdock. Black people deserve to live their lives without a constant reminder of how this nation enslaved them and continues to glorify those who carried out the dirty deed then fought a war to give them the right to continue doing so. And other Americans deserve to learn and recall their history without glorifying traitors.
((Didn’t your daddy teach you better than that, Casey Murdock?))”

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