OKLAHOMA CITY: In response to the Republican Platform Caucus proposal to threaten 82,000 children with deportation, the ACLU of Oklahoma issued the following statement: The following is attributable to Ryan Kiesel, Executive Director:   “The Republican Platform Caucus is using cheap, tired tactics of political distraction in an attempt to create confusion about Oklahoma’s true problem—a failing Legislature. Indeed, the Oklahoma Legislature is a far greater threat to the safety and prosperity of Oklahomans than any child that may have entered this Nation from one of our borders. This proposal might be laughable if it weren’t made at the expense of real human beings, commonRead More →

In response to the news that the owner and the manager of The Friendly Market, Robert Cox and Stephen Tyler Holman, have been acquitted of all charges regarding the sale of legal glass pipes out of their Norman, OK shop, The ACLU of Oklahoma has issued the following statement. The following statement is attributable to Ryan Kiesel, Executive Director: “It is unconscionable that the Cleveland County District Attorney would spend a single penny of taxpayer resources on such a monumental waste of time as to prosecute a business owner and manager who never broke any law. The people of Oklahoma ostensibly elect their district attorneysRead More →

Today, the Oklahoma Death Penalty Review Commission released their findings and recommendations on Oklahoma’s capital punishment system. The ACLU of Oklahoma applauds this courageous report and urges policymakers to consider the recommendations with the speed and seriousness they command. The Oklahoma Death Penalty Review Commission’s findings and recommendations should serve as a blueprint for Oklahoma policy makers as they grapple with the failures of Oklahoma’s entire criminal justice system, not just those in capital cases. Oklahoma lawmakers would be wise to closely follow the thoughtful, evidence based recommendations by the Commission. Doing so might begin to restore dwindling confidence in all criminal prosecutions, but itRead More →

This week a spokesperson for the Oklahoma Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs (OBNDD), Mark Woodard, made a series of outrageous claims in conversation with The Edmond Sun that marijuana legalization in Colorado has caused a spike in related criminal activity and overdoses. While on its face it is laughable, these demonstrably false claims are an unsettling example of the OBNDD once again advancing an agenda that is completely disconnected from a mature understanding of drugs and drug policy. OBNDD leadership has a clear motive for protecting this reprehensible and unsustainable system. It should be no surprise that the soldiers in the war on drugsRead More →

The Legislature is at it again. Today, HB 2177, which has already sailed through the House of Representatives, passed out of the Senate Judiciary Committee. This bill is nothing more than an attempt to yet again resurrect the 10 Commandments Monument on the Capitol grounds. Again, members of the Legislature have opted for a cheap political stunt over actually representing the interests of their constituents. It has been made abundantly clear by the Oklahoma Supreme Court, the people of Oklahoma, and over two centuries of our nation’s commitment to religious liberty that a 10 Commandments monument has no place on the Capitol grounds. Rather thanRead More →