Rep. Dan Lungren wants taxpayers to spend $100,000 to engrave the words “In God We Trust” and the Pledge of Allegiance at the Capitol Visitor Center.
The House of Representatives thought that was a dandy idea, and they passed the proposal 410-8.
But not everyone in the US puts their trust in imaginary beings, so the Freedom From Religion Foundation is suing to stop it:
The Wisconsin-based Freedom From Religion Foundation Inc. sued this week to stop the engraving, accusing Lungren of trying to force his religious beliefs on as many as 15 percent of all U.S. adults. That comprises “atheists, agnostics, skeptics and freethinkers, none of whom possess a belief in a god,” according to the lawsuit.
“It really is a Judeo-Christian endorsement by our government, and so Lungren is wrong,” said Dan Barker of Madison, Wis., a co-president of the foundation. “Lungren and others are pro-religious, and they want to actually use the machinery of government to promote their particular private religious views. That is unconstitutional, and that’s what we’re asking the court to decide”….
Barker said that atheists regarded the phrase “In God We Trust ” as rude, uncivil and un-American.
“Tens of millions of really good Americans don’t believe in God,” he said. “In fact, there’s many more nonbelievers than there are Jews, and we wouldn’t think of offending Jews on our national monuments…. Why is it wrong to offend a Jewish minority but it’s not wrong to offend those of us who serve in the military and sit on juries but we don’t believe in God?”
I agree that the motto “In God We Trust” is unconstitutional. Not only is it incorrect — many of us don’t believe in God or even if we do, don’t put our trust in him — it is using government to promote religion.
What do you think?