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Politically, There Is No Separation of Mosque and State in Oklahoma

Reader comment on item: Oklahomans Say No to Sharia

Submitted by Elbe (United States), Nov 16, 2010 at 19:28

Thanks to large financial contributions from Muslims to the Democratic party in the state, in recent years there has been no separation of mosque and state in Oklahoma.

Governor Brad Henry, Attorney General Drew Edmondson, Secretary of State Susan Savage, Democrats all, have benefited directly or indirectly from Muslim largesse to their political party. It should be mentioned here also that Clinton-nominated U.S. District Court Judge Vicki Miles-LeGrange, along with other milestones in her admirable career, served as a Democratic state senator in Oklahoma before ascending to the bench.

It is deplorable, but not surprising, that AG Edmondson chose not to fulfill his duty by appearing in court to support the will of the people of Oklahoma, when an out-of-state attorney challenged the state question regarding Sharia. Edmondson made his bias obvious years ago.

In a Tulsa newspaper dated November 28, 2007, the signatures of both AG Edmondson and Secretary of State Susan Savage appeared in a large ad that in essence criticized anyone who criticized proselytizing actions of the Governor's Ethnic American Advisory Council, which consists exclusively of Muslims.

Islam is the only "ethnicity" represented in the Governor's Ethnic American Advisory Council. That council was created by Executive Order 04-21, signed by Governor Henry on May 27, 2004. The council is an official entity of the Governor's office. Its members meet in state facilities, have state personnel assigned to assist them, and host celebrations of Eid in the Governor's mansion. They also, on at least one occasion, were granted preview and, in essence, approval rights for a production of the Oklahoma Educational Television Authority.

Reportedly, it was the idea of the Governor alone that "Ethnic" should be used instead of "Muslim" in the title of the council. However, members of the council are exclusively Muslim, and their activities can be viewed as promoting Islam. Those activities would be acceptable in this free society, were they not done under the aegis of the Governor's office.

Most council members presumably are Muslim immigrants to this country from the Middle East, but it seems that at least one past member was a native American who converted to Islam. Recently Governor Henry appointed the president of the Council to the state textbook committee.

One of the more prominent past members of the Muslim community of the greater Oklahoma City area was OSU graduate and Oklahoma Department of Transportation civil engineer Mufid Abdulqader, the now-imprisoned half-brother of HAMAS leader Khalid Meshall. Abdulqader was actively present on Christmas Day in 1992 when then CNN-reporter Steven Emerson first stumbled into a hotbed of Islamist activity in an Oklahoma City convention center. Emerson subsequently tried to alert our nation to the menace. He was ignored to our peril. September 11 was the result.

Could it be that Islamist sympathy in Oklahoma City attracted Zacarias Moussaoi, the would-be 9/11 hijacker, now in prison, who arrived in the area and applied for pilot training in the nearby city of Norman?

Is one to be called an Islamophobe, xenophobe, ignoramus, or bigot for raising questions about some of this? Or about the expulsion of a Pakistani Muslim from a Tulsa mosque, after he had published in the Tulsa World an opinion piece condemning violence in the name of Islam?

Perhaps the ignorance lies in those who don't question. Zuhdi Jasser has pointed out that the goals of political Islamists are the same the goals of violent jihadists. And Bernard Lewis reminds us that once radicals gain power, moderate Muslims become irrelevant. Muslims who value American freedoms have voiced support of the Oklahoma state question. CAIR's historical background and present action signals that it does not value those freedoms.

I had nothing to do with the formulation of SQ 455, but I voted for it.

Submitting....

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Note: Opinions expressed in comments are those of the authors alone and not necessarily those of Daniel Pipes. Original writing only, please. Comments are screened and in some cases edited before posting. Reasoned disagreement is welcome but not comments that are scurrilous, off-topic, commercial, disparaging religions, or otherwise inappropriate. For complete regulations, see the "Guidelines for Reader Comments".

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