Christian Legislators Put Up Ten Commandments Monument in Oklahoma… and Misspell ‘Sabbath’

Earlier today, a Ten Commandments monument was placed on the grounds of the state Capitol building in Oklahoma City:

The Republican-controlled Legislature authorized the privately funded monument in 2009, and former Democratic Gov. Brad Henry signed the bill into law.

The bill’s author, Rep. Mike Ritze, and his family paid about $10,000 for the monument’s construction.

“I think it’s a beautiful work of art, and it’s identical to ones in Texas, Utah and 200 other monuments that have been in place for years,” said Ritze, R-Broken Arrow.

Ritze, of course, insists this has nothing to do with religion. And he said it with a straight face. Amazing.

While a lawsuit may be filed over this, I find it amusing that whoever created this “beautiful work of art” couldn’t even manage to spell the word “Sabbath” correctly.

Maybe they should’ve asked an atheist to edit the writing on it.

(Thanks to @JordanSayHi for the link)

About Hemant Mehta

Hemant Mehta is the editor of Friendly Atheist, appears on the Atheist Voice channel on YouTube, and co-hosts the uniquely-named Friendly Atheist Podcast. You can read much more about him here.

  • fett101

    Sabbeth would be a great name for a metal band.

  • Scott Lumry

    Mr. Ritze had proofs of the monument before it was constructed. Makes me wary of the bills he is suppose to read before passing them. Also interesting that their god has so little command of the English language.

  • Randy Owens

    Well, at least they remembered to keep the “not” in “thou shalt not commit adultery” this time.

  • RK

    why is it shaped as somebody has bent over?

  • Alexandertimothy08

     Well, its not like it’s his first language.

  • BekahDekah

    Looks like they left out the apostrophe in “neighbor’s” in that last line, too.

  • Damion Reinhardt

    Well, it’s not like the typos are carved in stone.

    The Oklahoma Legislature must have missed the part of the Van Orden v. Perry case where Justice Breyer made it all hinge on history and context:

    Ah well. Time to fire up the legal team.

  • m6wg4bxw

    Considering how often Black Sabbath is referred to as simply “Sabbath,” I think it would be a poor choice. As a metalhead myself, I know I wouldn’t dare tread on such sacred ground.

  • m6wg4bxw

    The commandments on that monument are the those which the Bible describes on the first set of tablets, which were thrown to the ground and broken. I suggest similar treatment.

  • Stev84

     That doesn’t really matter to Republicans

  • Stev84

     They should make a monument of the set that Yaweh dictated after that

  • observer

    “I think it’s a beautiful work of art.”

    Oh please, anything related to God would be deemed a “beautiful work of art” by Christian Extremists. That’s not even themselves talking, that’s just how their preacher/parents programed them.

    For them, everything and anything done by, or related to God is considered Good ‘n Moral. EV-REY-THING AND AN-Y-THING.

  • Phil

    It did remind me of my brother-in-law…..

  • Andrew Burd

    it’s good that they put the all seeing eye and the eagle on the flag… those are important biblical references to maintain.

    what a crock of shit.

  • Andrew Burd

    I’m also wondering why they included the two stars of David at the bottom?  That’s a Jewish thing not a Christian thing.. 

  • Andrew Burd

    figures they’d use Constantine’s Chi-Rho too.. :P

  • Samantha Grover

    So, once you have something that is ‘just like x and y and a couple of hundred others’, isn’t it not really a piece of art anymore?  Does it not become a reproduction or copy?

  • Pepe

     Thou shalt not.

  • Stev84

    They like to use the word “Judeo” to give themselves a false air of legitimacy

  • James Lott

    LOL – when will they ever learn? It does not matter how long people have been doing the wrong thing. When it’s wrong, it’s wrong. Being wrong every day for the past 50, 60, 70… – fuck – the last 100 years – does not make it “ok”. It is just as wrong today, as it was when it was done in all of those other states. 

  • Sindigo

    Tribute act?

    Though I agree, they’d have to be an awesome one.

  • Good and Godless

    At least eagles existed in the alleged time frame.  The modern American Flag is as out of place as  Moses’ wrist watch was in “The Ten Commandments” movie.

  • Troels Jakobsen

    Yep, apart from the obvious tackiness of it all, I got a giggle out of the all-seeing eye, which many fundies associate with Illuminati, New World Order and Satan.

  • Ian F Mason

    It’s cruel to mock those who have problems.

  • Marian L Shatto

    The eagle and flag above the list mean that they have already broken commandment number one before they ever state it.  If that isn’t setting up “another god” before the one they claim to worship, I don’t know what is.

  • Baal

     I saw the eagle but it’s not well formed.  Did you notice that one of the donor’s children is named “Amity”? 

  • Baal

     What are you referring to?  Also, I’m in agreement with the principal but if the problem is a belief that 10 commandment monuments are 1) good art and 2) don’t really count as State support for the Abrahamic god then mocking seems to be in order.  It’s not all that artful and it is plainly religious. 

  • Baal

     Stars of David for total honor to the OT/Torah!  (Yes they seem out of place)

  • Cecelia Baines

    Ahh Oklahoma, where the wind goes weeping down the plains and “X” marks the signature.

  • fett101

    That’s why you add an umlaut and pronounce it “Sau-beth”.

  • nakedanthropologist


  • nakedanthropologist

    They’ll read whatever is on the teleprompter.  We should…do something with that knowledge, and go Corningstone on their collective asses.

  • Swrider

    The other “monuments” that have been in place for years were mostly the result of a publicity stunt for the movie, “The Ten Commandments”, released in 1956.

  • Octoberfurst

     You must realize we are dealing with with simple God-fearing Christian folks—-you know, morons.  The eagle and American flag obviously should be on the monument. After all we are the baby Jesus’ favorite nation and it would make him cry if the flag was not there.  But frankly I am surprised they didn’t put St Ronny Reagan’s face on there too. Wow, what an oversight!

  • Holytape

    Jebus Chirst!  Morans!

  • Duncan Nash McDuffie

    They also misspelled maidservant as “maidseruant.”

  • Stev84

    Americans really do worship the flag. Which clearly falls under the graven images/false idol rule

  • walkamungus

    Perhaps the artist thought, “How cheesy can I make this look and still get the commission?” Enter Stars of David, eagle, flag, etc.

  • George Kelley

    they also misspelled murder….

  • allein

    Are all the others that it is “just like” misspelled, too?

  • daryl carpenter

    “I think it’s a beautiful work of art”
    That makes it a graven image, doesn’t it?

  • Bdole

    Arguing with a Christian friend, I finally got exasperated: 

    He said, “if we’re not a Christian nation then why does our money say ‘In God We Trust?’”
    “Look” I said, “it also has a pyramid with an eye on it. Are we all Masons, too?”

    That shut them up.  I don’t even know is that IS indeed  a Masonic symbol, but it sure as hell isn’t out of the Bible.

  • Lurker111

    Hmm.  I thought the “bear false witness” commandment was #9.  Perhaps an alternate listing?  (I know there are some variations in the lists, but I thought the #9 commandment was fairly fixed.)

    Also, is there any study correlating religiosity with language difficulties?  Not meaning to be snarky here; it’s a real question that popped to mind.

  • NC_Atheist

    Trust in God, but use your spell check.

  • Alan Westfall

    It just looks like God’s Tombstone to me.

  • Howard

     Glen Bleck Sabbeth

  • Farter

    Hysterical!  What a bunch of morons.   I am definitely gonna keep the sabbeth holy though just in case….

  • Monty

    Ronny is the gawd of the old, first attempted inerrant, testament. As such, his portrait on this donated piece of sh”art” would violate his second commandment. Although, it’s not a religious piece. Moreover, one can appreciate the non-religious juxtaposition of dueling triangles on each lower corner of the tombstone—err, I mean art piece. 

  • Monty

    At the risk of sounding like an Amway convention, “Fire it up! Fire it up!” lol

  • Monty

    What it needs is shotguns. Lots of shotguns. God damn it! Where is Charlton Heston when you need him. What, 2008!? Last seen riding a cloud ascending to heaven!? Get him back down here to correct this shit or turn the Star Wars “defense” program’s assets away from the CCCP and aim at his cloud chariot. 

    Ahh to hell with it. Somebody donate a golden calf as one more piece of sh”art” to compliment this one here in my native land. 

  • Monty

    I wonder if the agribiz lobby in Oklahoma would be cool with a piece of art promoting a historical, but non religious, position that the citizenry should eschew port?

  • Alistair Jones

    I hate to say this… but if they get Ted Cruz on this case, then most likely the ACLU will LOSE!! Ted Cruz was able to successfully defend the same kind of thing with a case in Texas

  • McFidget

    I feel I should point out that there are two metal bands called ‘Sabbat’ although that’s more of a pagan word.

  • TheBlackCat

     The problem isn’t so much the commandments themselves, but how they are broken up.  There are actually more than 10 rules in the 10 commandments, and the original list is not numbered, so different sects break the rules into 10 “commandments” in different ways leading to different numbering.

  • Richard Morgan

    Looks like a gravestone.

  • Richard Morgan

    Looks like a gravestone.

  • Jamie Bernstein

    The word “sabbath” is just transliterated from the Hebrew, so spelling it a different way with English letters wouldn’t technically make it wrong. It’s sort of like how there are a million spellings for Chanukah. 

  • Frank Sellers

    Haha! What traitorous dummies!
    (And it was donated by a doctor. How embarASSing…)

  • Frank Sellers

    Looks like a bloody tombstone to me.

  • Frank Sellers

    That makes it more American, God’s chosen country! I don’t know why they didn’t just put a dollar bill on the top and be done with it! After all, that’s all any religion is after – your money.

  • Frank Sellers

    What scene was that in?! I love The 10 Cs! Such splendiferous technicolor schlock!

  • Matthew Brown

    Why do the religious nuts keep making these graven images that prohibit graven images? That takes a special kind of stupid, so misspellings are not a surprise.