Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Ellison To Use Jefferson's Koran In Ceremony

Much hay has been made by Republican activists over Minnesota's newly elected congressman Keith Ellison choosing to use a Koran in a symbolic swearing-in ceremony following the actual oath in which members simply raise their hand and vow to obey the Constitution.

Ellison has found a symbolic way to deride those who object to freedom of religion.

Rep.-elect Keith Ellison, the first Muslim elected to Congress, found himself under attack last month when he announced he'd take his oath of office on the Koran -- especially from Virginia Rep. Virgil Goode, who called it a threat to American values.

Yet the holy book at tomorrow's ceremony has an unassailably all-American provenance. We've learned that the new congressman -- in a savvy bit of political symbolism -- will hold the personal copy once owned by Thomas Jefferson.

"He wanted to use a Koran that was special," said Mark Dimunation, chief of the rare book and special collections division at the Library of Congress, who was contacted by the Minnesota Dem early in December. Dimunation, who grew up in Ellison's 5th District, was happy to help.

Jefferson's copy is an English translation by George Sale published in the 1750s; it survived the 1851 fire that destroyed most of Jefferson's collection and has his customary initialing on the pages. This isn't the first historic book used for swearing-in ceremonies -- the Library has allowed VIPs to use rare Bibles for inaugurations and other special occasions.


Blogger Faultline USA said...

The strength of America may come from the separation of church and state, but unless that separation is strengthened, it may very well be our undoing.
I invite you to read and comment on today’s post,
An “Honest” Terrorist Writes: “No Muslim Can Pledge Loyalty to the Constitution”

1/03/2007 9:57 AM  
Anonymous Meatball One said...

...I'm thinking of that medical condition endemic to certain suburbs. You know - Faultlinear shagus rugus cerebral hemorrhage, commonly assumed to be precipitated by supine hypermasterbation in stucco house basements.

1/06/2007 9:33 AM  
Blogger Effwit said...



1/06/2007 10:08 AM  

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