by Jack Minor –
A bill to affirm “In God We Trust” as the national motto is scheduled to be voted on in Congress today.
The bill, sponsored by Rep. Randy Forbes (R-Va.), Co-Chairman of the Congressional Prayer Caucus, reaffirms that “In God We Trust” is the official motto of the United States. The resolution also encourages the public display of the national motto in all public buildings, public schools and other government institutions. The motto is currently displayed behind the Speaker’s chair in the House chamber.
The bill currently has 64 co-sponsors, including several Democrats, including Rep. Mike Ross of Arkansas and Rep. Dan Boren from Oklahoma. A committee report on the measure points out the phrase has been on our currency since 1864.
While the phrase has long been considered the national motto by many, Forbes said the bill is necessary to help correct misunderstandings about church and state.
“In 2006, on the 50th anniversary of its adoption, the Senate reaffirmed ‘In God We Trust’ as the official national motto of the United States. Tomorrow, the House of Representatives will have the same opportunity to reaffirm our national motto and directly confront a disturbing trend of inaccuracies and omissions, misunderstandings of church and state, rogue court challenges, and efforts to remove God from the public domain by unelected bureaucrats. As our nation faces challenging times, it is appropriate for Members of Congress and our nation—like our predecessors—to firmly declare our trust in God, believing that it will sustain us for generations to come,” Forbes said.
Some Democrats argued against the bill, fearing it could be offensive for Muslims and non-Christians.
Several Democrats dissenting with the committee report, said individuals could be “coerced into being exposed to a religious message.”
President Obama appears to disagree as to what the national motto is. In a speech at the University of Indonesia in Jakarta, Obama said ‘In the United States our motto is; “But I believe that the history of both America and Indonesia should give us hope. It is a story written into our national mottos. In the United States, our motto is E pluribus unum — out of many, one. Bhinneka Tunggal Ika — unity in diversity.
Following the speech, over 40 members of Congress sent a letter to the President reminding him that “E pluribus unum” was not the national motto. The letter also noted two separate instances where the President misquoted the Declaration of Independence by omitting the word “creator” when mentioning our inalienable rights.
“The Declaration of Independence definitely recognizes God, our Creator, as the source of our rights. Omitting the word ‘Creator’ once was a mistake, but twice establishes a pattern.”