With the celebration of this nation’s 233rd birthday only two days away, a group of state leaders gathered during a mid-day press conference at the Oklahoma State Capitol July 2 to sign the “Oklahoma Citizen’s Proclamation for Morality” that emphasizes the moral foundations of the nation and declares the need for spiritual renewal to address its many societal problems.
“The foundational documents of our republic repeatedly note the need for a free people to also be a moral people to truly prosper,” said state Rep. Sally Kern, R-Oklahoma City, one of the main organizers of the event. “You cannot fully address social issues without also addressing spiritual needs.”
But, the ceremony didn’t come off without controversy, as pro-homosexual protesters disrupted Kern immediately after she read the proclamation with shouts of “Shame on You” and “Love thy Neighbor,” which rang loudly through the first floor rotunda of the building.
Kern tried to raise her voice over the din, without much success, but was heard to say, “Those people who preach tolerance are not willing to extend the same thing to someone who disagrees with them. So, ladies and gentlemen, we are seeing a wonderful illustration of intolerance.”
In the end, protesters were outnumbered by supporters, however, who drowned out their shouts by first singing, “God Bless America,” then “The Battle Hymn of the Republic” and finally, “The Star Spangled Banner.”
Kern’s press conference was cut short, and she apologized to the media present for not being able to take questions from them. The press conference resumed later at another location in the Capitol so she could do so.
During the scheduled noon press conference/proclamation signing, business leaders, civic leaders and religious leaders, in additional to lawmakers, took turns stepping up to a podium to sign the proclamation. They, in turn, were followed by “ordinary” citizens who did so later. A total of 148 persons signed the proclamation. The document (See complete version at right) is available for others to sign at the Web site, www.reclaimoklahoma.org.
The proclamation—which takes much of its wording from such historic documents as the Declaration of Independence, the writings of the Founding Fathers and the Oklahoma Constitution—states the “people of Oklahoma have a strong tradition of reliance upon the Creator of the Universe” and declares that the signers “believe our economic woes are consequences of our greater national moral crisis,” noting negative social trends such as increased out of wedlock births and child abuse.
The proclamation concludes by declaring the need for Oklahomans to “acknowledge the need for a national awakening of righteousness” in order to “secure and perpetuate the blessing of Liberty.”