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Posted by on Aug 27, 2015 in Voices | 0 comments

How did that slide by?

How did that slide by?

Recently God made it clear to me that He doesn’t demand that we all be activists, but He does require that we are all active. See the difference? Col 3:17, right? “Whatever you do in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord.”

So from the “How did that slide by?” file, where we also keep the documents on “The Supreme Court will never make same sex marriage legal” and “Abortion won’t be used as convenience for birth control”, we bring you the “They’ll never restrict religious liberty” story.

In my last blog When Unconstitutional is Unconscionable, I spoke about the recent Oklahoma Supreme Court ruling (based on the constitution of the state of Oklahoma) that required the Ten Commandments monument be removed from the State Capitol grounds. In that blog, I talked about how this Blaine Amendment is restrictive and limits the free exercise of a person’s faith. In this blogger’s humble opinion, our state constitution violates the first amendment in the Bill of Rights of our Constitution of the United States.

So how did that slide by? Sadly, I must report it may be much worse than even I had feared. I recently had this same discussion with some older and wiser folks and anonymous legal professionals who opened my eyes to some bad things. Here is the amendment in question.

Section II-5: Public money or property – Use for sectarian purposes.

No public money or property shall ever be appropriated, applied, donated, or used, directly or indirectly, for the use, benefit, or support of any sect, church, denomination, or system of religion, or for the use, benefit, or support of any priest, preacher, minister, or other religious teacher or dignitary, or sectarian institution as such.

What I want everyone to see and what has been made known to me is that the State Constitution supersedes all county, and municipal laws, and even overrides Governor signed legislation, (see the recent Supreme Court decision on the Ten Commandments). I was also informed, this language is way too restrictive, especially if you read it slowly and plainly. Each contention in the amendment can be used as a separate item. Let me give you an example.

“No public …. property shall ever be…used, directly or indirectly, for the use, benefit or support of any … church, denomination or system of religion or for the use, benefit or support of any priest, preacher, minister or other religious teacher …..”

Do you see what this really means? It doesn’t say “State property;” it says “No public property shall ever be used.” It doesn’t matter what it “meant;” it matters what it “says.”

No city park, no public arena or stadium, no campus, no lake, no city, county or state building, no road or public way, no prison, no state park, no softball field, no river……. NO PUBLIC PROPERTY !

Whoa! How did that slip by? This is not just about a slab of granite…..

The following are currently probable violations of the state constitution (based on S 2-5):

  • FCA Meetings in schools
  • See you at the Pole
  • Church Youth Group retreats at a State Park
  • A picnic and devotion under the pavilion at the city park
  • A Franklin Graham festival in a public arena
  • Chaplains in state hospitals and prisons
  • Religious organizations on college campuses
  • ….and if strictly enforced, your church bus or van can’t get on a public road to take kids to church camp

Call your or write your state legislator and senator. Let them know this is bad and violates our religious liberty. Let them know how you feel. This is very low-hanging fruit and shouldn’t be able to stand up to a United States Supreme Court decision, but we thought that before.

I don’t know how this slipped by…….but it has to go.

About The Author

Wade Crews
Wade Crews

Wade Crews, Deacon and Assistant Senior Adult Pastor, Quail Springs Baptist Church of Oklahoma City, has worked in youth and college programs for a number of churches and ministries. He and his wife Grachel have two teenage sons.

Wade Crews has blogged 40 posts at wordslingersok.com

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