The Pryor Times

August 29, 2013

God, guns and football


— The American Civil Liberties Union has filed a lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of the state’s Ten Commandments monument. The lawsuit is attempting to have the monument removed from the Capitol grounds. We in the legislature voted for the monument a couple of years ago. I support the monument because I feel a strong majority of Oklahomans believe in the Ten Commandments, genuinely try to live by them and aren’t offended by them being placed in an obscure corner of the state Capitol grounds. In fact, a recent poll showed that the monument was supported by nearly 80 percent of Oklahomans. What a better place the world would be if everyone not only lived by the Ten Commandments but also the “Golden Rule.”

It is obvious that the three teens that shot and killed the jogging East Central University student from Australia “for the fun of it” did not adhere to the Ten Commandment that says “Thou shalt not kill.” What a tragic incident that has given our state a black eye worldwide.

While the shooting of the student is indeed a senseless tragedy, we must be careful to avoid emotional knee-jerk reactions to the event. Already this event has fueled talk on the national level that we should strengthen the gun control laws in this country.

On a lighter note, football season is here! Get out and support the teams in your area. All of the young people, from the players to the band members to the spirit squads, put in a lot of time getting ready for the games. Sports are a great way for young people to learn discipline, responsibility and self-motivation.

While there is no greater sports fan than me, we must all remember that sports are part of the school system, but academics are the reason for our school systems. We must make sure we support the academic programs and teachers in our schools at the same level we support the athletic programs and coaches.

I will be heading back to Oklahoma City next week for a special session of the Legislature called by Gov. Mary Fallin to address the issue of lawsuit reform. I can be reached at dougcox@okhouse.gov or 405-557-7415.  Thanks for allowing me to serve as your state representative.