On Tuesday the Arkansas State Capitol erected a Ten Commandments statue. Less than 24 hours later, Michael Tate Reed destroyed it with his Dodge Dart.
This isn’t the first time Reed has run into a Ten Commandments statue, believe it or not. He did it at the Oklahoma State Capitol in 2014.
If you think he’s some raging anti-Christian atheist, you’re wrong. He claims to be a “born again Christian” on his Facebook page. However, he’s by all accounts a mentally ill man, so it’s difficult to take his word for anything.
The incident occurred around 4:47 a.m. on June 28 as Reed allegedly streamed it on Facebook Live video while shouting “freedom.” He even created a hashtag he hoped would take off as a result of the action and made a GoFundMe site hoping to raise funds to replace his car. He allegedly called himself “a terrorist” on Facebook and made threats to presidents of both political parties, including Donald Trump and Barack Obama. He called Prince Charles the anti-Christ, George Bush Sr. a satanist, and the Pope a false prophet in a series of rambling Facebook posts.
After his arrest in Oklahoma, Reed wrote a disturbing letter to a newspaper in that state describing his mental illness.
In the letter to the Tulsa World, Reed wrote “that his psychotic breaks led to getting inspiration from a Dracula movie, thinking Michael Jackson’s spirit was in meat, believing he was the incarnation of an occult leader and attempting to contact Lucifer’s high priestess he called Gwyneth Paltrow.”
He was eventually released in the Oklahoma case “under an agreement with Oklahoma County District Attorney David Prater for continued treatment, therapy and family support. He is diagnosed with schizoaffective disorder,” reported Tulsa World.
Schizoaffective disorder is a combination of schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and depression. So there you have it. The guy is troubled and I hope he gets the help he needs.
Here’s Reed’s livestream of the incident. Because of his chronic mental health disorder, I won’t condemn the guy, though I do condemn the commenters who called him a “hero” and praised him for desecrating Christian symbolism.
Liberals and libertarians may cry about “separation of church and state,” yet that phrase appears nowhere in the Constitution. All it says is that “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.” A statue of the Ten Commandments outside a state capitol building does not establish religion, nor does it prohibit the free exercise of religion.