A big six-foot monument to the Ten Commandments was placed on the grounds of the Oklahoma state capitol on Thursday, three years after it was authorized by the state legislature.
Two problems with that. Three if you’re the Oklahoma ACLU, but more on that below. It has spelling errors of biblical proportions.
The monument urges Sooners to “Remember the Sabbeth, and keep it holy.”
And another commandment states, “Thou shalt not covet thy neighbor’s wife, nor his manservant, nor his maidseruent.”
State Rep. Mike Ritze, R-Broken Arrow, dismissed the errors to the words “Sabbath” and “maidservant” as no problem.
“It’s a simple fix,” he told The Oklahoman. These kinds of errors are “not uncommon with monument manufacturing.”
Try telling that to a judge if you file a motion or brief riddled with errors.
Ritze was the guy who pushed the monument in 2009, sponsoring the necessary legislation. It passed the House, 83-2, and the Senate, 38-8. Sixteen legislators were, um, absent when the vote was taken.
The monument, which cost about $20,000, was paid for entirely with private funds and Ritze’s family will pick up the tab for maintenance.
Opponents, meanwhile, may lawyer up. The ACLU in Oklahoma is mulling a lawsuit challenging the monument as a violation of the separation of church and state.
Proponents will be ready. Ritze said a group called the Liberty Legal Institute, which recently helped to defend a challenge to a similar monument in Texas, stands ready to help.
Presumably all parties will use spell check before filing anything with a court.