July 27, 2015

This seems to be a recurring topic in right-wing circles: the constant violation of the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment.

The First Amendment's Establishment Clause prohibits the government from making any law “respecting an establishment of religion.” This clause not only forbids the government from establishing an official religion, but also prohibits government actions that unduly favor one religion over another. It also prohibits the government from unduly preferring religion over non-religion, or non-religion over religion.

In God We Trust has been on our coins since just after the Civil War. Here's the timeline for paper money:

Credit: Treasury.gov

In 1956 Congress approved a measure to make 'In God We Trust' our official motto. This occurred following the famous era of McCarthy hearings where many people in the State Department were blacklisted as Godless Communists. We needed more God, so we added it to paper currency, which solves everything...until those atheists start complaining.

Doug Rader, the Sheriff of Stone County, Missouri, decided it would be a swell idea to have a little more God to protect all these poor, maligned police officers just doing their job, even if that includes brutalizing some members of society. He decided to slap the In God We Trust bumper stickers on each and every squad car in the county. Atheists, like Hemant Mehta from The Friendly Atheist said,

The worst part is that there is probably no legal recourse here. "In God We Trust" has been so neutralized in our court system that judges no longer see it as Christian. That's how good it is to be in the Protestant majority in this country.

Notice the biblical rhetoric of the page. Clearly, the Sheriff's office is steeped in Christian tradition. But most likely, they act nothing like the teachings of Jesus Christ dictate.

Credit: Stone County Sheriff Website

What the Fox News piece fails to acknowledge, of course, is not only the Biblical rhetoric on the Sheriff's page but the Sheriff's message which is vehemently anti-Obama.

The atheists who protest the Sheriff's actions are well within their legal right, as the police are a publicly funded-by-taxpayers entity. There should be no establishment of religion over non-religion. Why do they hate the Constitution so much?

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