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Satan Statue at the Oklahoma State Capitol?

The building already has a statue of the Ten Commandments, so a satanic group says it should get space, too.

Drawing for the Satan statue proposed by the Oklahoma State Capitol proposed by a New York-based Satanic Temple.
Since 2012 the Oklahoma capitol has displayed the Ten Commandments.

The American Civil Liberties Union objects to the monument and is suing to have it removed, but supporters, joined by Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt, argue that  “[T]he Ten Commandments are an important component of the foundation of the laws and legal system of the United States of America and of the State of Oklahoma.”

Well, some think one religion means any religion gets a shot at capitol display, too. According to an Associated Press story:

A satanic group unveiled designs Monday for a 7-foot-tall statue of Satan it wants to put at the Oklahoma state Capitol, where a Ten Commandments monument was placed in 2012.
The New York-based Satanic Temple formally submitted its application to a panel that oversees the Capitol grounds.
The statue would apparently depict the Prince of Darkness “as Baphomet, a goat-headed figure with horns, wings and a long beard that's often used as a symbol of the occult. …Satan is sitting in a pentagram-adorned throne with smiling children next to him.”

The Satanic Temple said  the proposed sculpture (above) “will also have a functional purpose as a chair where people of all ages may sit on the lap of Satan for inspiration and contemplation."

The 7-foot tall figure will cost the church of Satan about $20,000 to construct.

The Oklahoma Capitol Preservation Commission, the 15-member body in charge of the display of art objects in public areas of the building, says that it will not be making decisions about new installations until all lawsuits about the Ten Commandments are over.

Oklahoma legislator Earl Sears called the Satan statue "an insult to the good people of the state" and explained to the AP that he “not see Satanism as a religion, and they have no place at the state Capitol."

The Universal Society of Hinduism has also contacted the commission with the aim of erecting a statue of Hanuman, one of Hinduism’s many gods.

Daniel Luzer is GOVERNING's news editor.
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