Rex Duncan, a member of the Oklahoma House of Representatives, has refused the “Centennial Qu’ran” offered as a gift by the Governor’s Ethnic American Advisory Council. Duncan is one of sixteen members of the State House who have refused the offer. Duncan is free to refuse any gift. There is nothing that says that he must accept the gift of a Quran, Bible or any other religious text. Sure, it’s impolite, but well within his rights. But his rationale for refusing the gift is quite striking. The Norman Transcript reports that
“Most Oklahomans do not endorse the idea of killing innocent women and children in the name of ideology,” he said in an interview with the Associated Press. Duncan said he objected “to the use of the state Centennial Seal and the state Seal all in an effort to further their (Muslims’) religion.”
However, earlier in the year he accepted a “Centennial Bible”
This spring, the Baptist General Convention of Oklahoma distributed copies of a centennial Bible.
Duncan said he was pleased to receive the Bible.
“I don’t know any Christians who run around using the Bible as their basis of justification or instruction booklet to keep killing innocent people,” he said.
This raises a number of interesting questions. Is Duncan (a member of the First Methodist Church of Tulsa) ignorant of what the Bible says? Is Duncan unaware of the long history of Christian terrorism in the United States? Or is he simply being a bigot?
Duncan says that he rejects “killing innocent women and children in the name of ideology”. It makes me wonder if he has ever read much of the Bible. Unlike the Qu’ran, the Bible commands genocide in the book of Joshua, specifically calling for the murder of women and children. Failure to commit genocide is criticised in the books of Judges and Samuel. The assertion that one would reject the gift of a Qu’ran because it endorses the “killing innocent women and children”, and yet accept a Bible, is ludicrous.
Duncan’s further assertion that he doesn’t “know any Christians who run around using the Bible as their basis of justification or instruction booklet to keep killing innocent people” is equally amazing. Has he not heard of Eric Rudolph? What about the Army of God? The Lambs of Christ and James Kopp (who murdered Dr. Barnett Slepian)? The Ku Klux Klan? The organisers of “Paul Hill Days“? There have been strong suggestions of a connection between the Christian Identity movement and the Oklahoma City bombing.
Duncan’s actions were criticised by Darryl DeBorde, pastor of Braden Park Baptist Church and a board member of the Tulsa Interfaith Alliance
“The Tulsa Interfaith Alliance expects all of our elected officials to treat all of their constituents with dignity and respect,” he said.
“To purposefully condemn and denounce all Oklahomans who are members of one religious body is just wrong, whether they be Muslim, Baptist or anything else.”
H/T Bruce Prescott.