I wonder if the Oklahoma Legislature wanted to build an Oil Baron Cultural Center & Museum how quickly it would be funded through bond issues and other tax dollars.
It could be a center that describes how those leaders who helped make us dependent on fossil fuels, who brought us things like natural gas fracking and who, for the most part, ignore global warming are the most wondrous, (primarily) white men to ever walk the planet earth.
I bet the public funding would come together fairly quickly.
I think of this issue because legislative leaders have yet to fully fund the American Indian Cultural Center & Museum, specifically declining a bond issue proposal recently that would generate $40 million in construction money for the project. The project, which is just east of downtown Oklahoma City, has already received $91 million in funding, but it remains uncompleted.
So speaking of “cultural,” is there a “cultural bias” in the decision to delay funding?
No one that I know has raised the issue of ethnic bias in the decision, but it’s difficult not to speculate in Oklahoma that it’s at least one of the reasons, especially given the current political milieu here.
State Sen. Andrew Rice, an Oklahoma City Democrat, believes the lack of action on further funding is “shortsighted,” according to a recent article in the Oklahoma Gazette. Senate Pro Tem Brian Bingman, a Sapulpa Republican, has referred the issue for an interim study, which means more delay.
The center and museum will attract visitors from across the world, and it would be an economic boon to the area. More importantly, it honors the state’s and nation’s rich American Indian history and culture. It should be funded as soon as possible.