Saturday, December 02, 2006

Top 11 Books For Oaths Of Office

Representative Keith Ellison is planning on eschewing the Bible when taking his oath of office next month. Elliston will be replacing the Bible with his religious text of choice, the Koran. To my knowledge, replacing the Bible with another book is unprecedented, although I am told others have taken the oath without a book or sometimes with the Bible and another book (I believe the Book of Mormon has accompanied the Bible in a handful of cases).

As a conservative with strong libertarian tendencies, I cannot get offended by Ellison's decision to use his book of choice. However, since many liberals get in a snit over the so-called "separation between church and state," I wonder why we use a religious book at all. I think Elliston may be at the beginning of a revolution that will lead to many other books being used for oaths of state. Since we are in a secular and individualistic society, I can envision a world where each individual picks a book with deep meaning to himself (or herself). Here are some possible combinations that might have been used in the past if the Ellison precedent had existed:

11. President Bill Clinton - "The Joy of Sex" by Alex Comfort

10. Senator Ted Kennedy - "The Playboy Bartender's Guide (Deluxe Edition)"

9. Senator Hillary Clinton - "The Feminine Mystique" by Betty Friedan

8. Senator Harry Reid - "The Godfather" by Mario Puzzo

7. Senator Amy Klobuchar - "Your Inner Beauty" by Jill Freeman

6. Senator Robert Byrd - "My Life In The Klan" by Jerry Thompson

5. Governor Jesse Ventura - "Dr. Seuss's ABC (an I can read all by myself beginner book)"

4. Vice-President Al Gore - "The Joy of Worry" by Ellis Weiner & Ron Chast

3. Senator Paul Wellstone - "The Communist Manifesto" by Karl Marx & Frederick Engles

2. President Jimmy Carter - "Rabbit, Run" by John Updike

1. Representative Barney Frank - "Liberace: An Autobiography"


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