Published October 22, 2007
OKLAHOMA CITY – An Oklahoma lawmaker is objecting to getting a copy of the Koran from the Governor's Ethnic American Advisory Council.
"I object to the use of the state Centennial Seal and the state Seal all in an effort to further their religion," state Representative Rex Duncan said Monday.
Duncan also wrote his colleagues that he rejected the gift because "most Oklahomans do not endorse the idea of killing innocent women and children in the name of ideology."
Marjaneh Seirafi-Pour, chairwoman of the governor's council and a Muslim, said she received a call from Duncan wondering whether state money was used to buy the books.
She told the Tulsa World newspaper that members of the Muslim community paid for the copies.
"We are not trying to force anything on anyone. This is a peaceful, thoughtful project to introduce ourselves to leaders," she said.
Earlier, lawmakers also received a copy of the Bible sponsored by The Baptist General Convention in Oklahoma.
"Mine is proudly on my desk on the Capitol and I don't think I ever read a part of it that condones the killing of women and children in furtherance of God's word," Duncan said. "It's one of the nicest things I've received in my three years in the Legislature."