Saturday, The Oklahoman editorialized in support of Senator David Holt’s project to commission a portrait of Ralph Ellison for the Oklahoma Capitol.
The full editorial can be read here. It is excerpted here:
Invisible no more?
Ralph Ellison’s novel, “Invisible Man,” is one of the most influential books of the past century. It remains required reading for students across the country for its treatment of racial issues. Yet even as the book remains highly visible, Ellison himself is often overlooked locally even though he was born and raised in Oklahoma City. That’s starting to change. An effort is underway to place Ellison’s portrait at the Oklahoma Capitol alongside those of other state luminaries such as Will Rogers and Jim Thorpe. Ellison, who died in 1994, might not be around to appreciate this overdue recognition, but that doesn’t make it meaningless. A major literary figure of the 20th century was raised in Oklahoma. The state should celebrate that. Ellison wasn’t inducted into the Oklahoma Hall of Fame until six years after he died. By displaying Ellison’s portrait at the Capitol, state officials have the opportunity to ensure Ellison no longer remains invisible to the general public.
George and I enjoyed the Oklahoma County Republican Party Chili Cook-Off this Friday night!
Our community has lost one of its leading citizens, and someone who was a friend and mentor to me – Leland Gourley, publisher of the OKC Friday paper.
I think I believed that Leland Gourley would live forever. His example will. Veteran. Public servant. Small businessman. Opinion leader. Father and husband. Eternally optimistic about our country, our state, and our city. A citizen in the truest and most inspiring sense of the word. I sometimes fear that we don’t make them like Leland anymore, but we will have his life story to remind us what Americans have been, and can still be.
I am very excited to announce a project I’ve been working on for several months with the help of OCU President Robert Henry, Kevin Perry of Perry Publishing and Broadcasting, Friends of the Capitol, and the Oklahoma Arts Council.
That project is to honor Oklahoma City’s Ralph Ellison with a portrait in the Oklahoma Capitol.
Today, The Tulsa World quotes Senator David Holt in a story on legislative pay:
Sen. David Holt, R-Oklahoma City, said he liked the process for determining legislative pay because lawmakers have no say in the matter.
“You don’t do it for the money,” Holt said. “You do it for the ability to serve the people of Oklahoma.”