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Oklahoma Supreme Court rejects appeal, orders removal of Ten Commandments stone at Capitol

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Oklahoma’s Supreme Court on Monday said the state must remove a Ten Commandments stone monument first placed at its Capitol in 2012, rejecting an appeal to reconsider an earlier decision.

The justices denied a request by the Oklahoma Capitol Preservation Commission to rethink the court’s June 30 decision that the statue’s placement violates the state constitution’s ban on the use of state property for the benefit of religion.

Earlier in July, Oklahoma Governor Mary Fallin, a Republican, had said she would keep the monument in place while lawmakers sought a way to block the decision.

The 6-foot-tall (1.8-meter) monument was paid for with private money and is supported by lawmakers in the socially conservative state. Some lawmakers had threatened to impeach the justices or amend the constitution.

“We carefully consider the arguments of the commission and find no merit warranting a grant of rehearing,” Chief Justice John Reif wrote.

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After the Ten Commandments monument went up, other groups including Satanists and the Church of the Flying Spaghetti

Monster, applied to erect their own monuments on Capitol grounds to mark what they say are historical events.

The Satanic Temple unveiled its bronze Baphomet sculpture in Detroit on Saturday after failing to have it installed near Oklahoma’s Ten Commandments monument.

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Jex Blackmore, director of the Satanic Temple Detroit chapter, said members plan to ship the sculpture to Arkansas, where a law authorizing a Ten Commandments statue on capitol grounds was approved earlier in 2015.

A spokesman for Fallin said the state has not received a final order to remove the monument, which would come from district court.

“In the meantime, the state is reviewing what legal options are available for preserving the monument,” spokesman Alex Weintz said.

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(Reporting by Heide Brandes in Oklahoma City; Editing by David Bailey and Eric Walsh)


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The real problem wasn’t the racism — it was the Trump taking ‘the Lord’s name in vain’ twice: supporter

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President Donald Trump was widely condemned after supporters at a campaign rally in West Virginia turned his racist "go back" message into a "Send Her Back" chant against one of a woman of color in Congress.

One Trump supporter in West Virginia also criticized the speech, but not for the racist targeting of Rep. Ilhan Omar.

State Senator Paul Hardesty, a Democrat, wrote to the White House to complain about Trump's use of the word "goddamn."

The letter was republished by the Montgomery-Herald.

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Tongue-tied GOP strategist crashes and burns on-air while trying to deny Trump’s racism

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Republican strategist Amy Tarkanian crashed and burned on CNN on Saturday while attempting to deny President Donald Trump's racism.

"I do not believe that the president’s tweets were racist. I do believe they were not well thought out. He needs that extra, 'Are you sure?' button on Twitter," Tarkanian argued.

"I'm a black man, I'm a Republican and a black man," the Rev. Joe Watkins interjected. "My mother's an immigrant, I would be angry if someone said that to my mother."

"Oh, it’s very offensive. But he did not say, because you are this color, go back to where you came from," Tarkanian argued. "I’m not supporting that tweet. Was it racist? No. Was it stupid? Yes."

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Trump supporter blames Democrats for being targeted by the president: ‘Why is that racist?’

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CNN interviewed a supporter of President Donald Trump in Eau Claire, Wisconsin who refused to acknowledge the racism in the president's "Go Back" attacks on four women of color in Congress.

The network interviewed Kerri Krumenauer of Wiersgalla Plumbing & Heating Company about Trump's attacks.

"How is it racist?" she asked.

"If you don't like this country, get out," she demanded. "Leave!"

She then showed how misinformed she was about the incident.

"He didn't use any names -- they stood up," she falsely claimed. In fact, Trump did use names and the targets did not stand up as they were not at his North Carolina campaign rally.

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