OKLAHOMA CITY – As historical statues and monuments continue to be targeted by protestors across the country, Oklahoma State Senator Casey Murdock wants to see those works of art preserved for educational and historic purposes. He’s proposing bringing those stone and bronze pieces to Senate District 27, which includes nine counties in northwestern Oklahoma and the panhandle.
“Four years ago, President George W. Bush spoke at the opening of the National Museum of African History and Culture in Washington D.C., and he said a great nation does not hide its history, it faces its flaws and corrects them,” said Murdock, R-Felt. “We must face our flaws and move forward as a nation, but erasing our history dooms us to repeat it. I think we should protect those artistic representations and continue to learn from them.”
While many protestors have focused on tearing down and removing statues depicting Confederate officers and soldiers, statues of Union officers have also been targeted in recent days. Some have even called for the removal of religious artwork.
“It makes no sense—it’s even gotten to the point where some extremists have called for the removal or destruction of art depicting Jesus with light skin and hair,” Murdock said. “Jesus taught us to love our neighbors as ourselves—focusing on skin color diminishes his message and teachings. This is just wrong.”
The idea of making Oklahoma’s Senate District 27 a sanctuary for historic artwork was something Murdock first broached on social media. He said no taxpayer funds would be used—Murdock said private donations would pay for the relocation of the statues.
“We must preserve our history—the good, the bad, and yes, even the ugly. These statues and monuments are interpretations of the personalities and events that shaped our nation, and as the decades have passed, our perspectives and context for these events and people have changed. All of that must be part of the discussion, but censoring that discussion circumvents growth and denies reality.”
For more information, email Casey.Murdock@oksenate.gov.