No God Money
My name is Margaret Mann and I am from around Cleveland, Ohio. I am going to be attending Princeton Model Congress on thursday and I desperately need some more information on my bill. My bill is about taking the word God off of money and while I have some info I have not been completely succesful. I was wondering if you could send me some information on why and how the word god was put onto money in the 50's. Any historical documents also would be helpful. I know that this is short notice but I would like it if you could try to send me info. Also I would like to help in this campaing so that info would help.
Thanks A Lot!
From: "Positive Atheism" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
To: "margaret mann"
Subject: Re: No God Money
Date: Tuesday, November 28, 2000 1:17 AM
The U.S. Treasury has a piece called "History of the Motto 'In God We Trust'" which, to me, is the smoking gun in the U.S. Government's quest to impose a state religion. Elsewhere, the Treasury Department admits that they are "doing all they can" to protect the false motto from being removed from our money.
The motto was originally placed during the Civil war because of the fear that "our Republic [might be] shattered beyond reconstruction. Would not the antiquaries of succeeding centuries rightly reason from our past that we were a heathen nation." This in the letter from Christian minister N. R. Watkinson in 1861. Within one week, the order was given to develop and place a religious motto on our coins. This act was committed surreptitiously, while the majority of our citizens and leaders were struggling to save the nation from what then appeared to be certain destruction.
Numismatists Online has a detailed history of the motto on coins, showing that the motto was not mandated on all coins until 1955, during Senator Joseph McCarthy's era of anti-Communist hysteria. In those days, atheism equaled Communism, and so the Americans countered one fundamentalist doctrine (Communism) with another (Christianity). If members of the Christian majority even suspected you of being an atheist you lost your career and often your freedom. A handful of very strong people were able to prevail against this despicable doctrine. Again, this legislation was slipped in surreptitiously while the rest of us were struggling to protect our nation from what then appeared to be swift and certain (nuclear) destruction.
This only shows how dishonest the whole "In God We Trust" thing is. The motto itself is a lie, as a sizeable chunk of Americans do not trust the Christian god.
Jon Murray, Madalyn Murray O'Hair's son, testified before the One Hundredth Congress (the U.S. House of Representatives) in 1988. I don't know if American Atheists still has this document posted, but I typed it in from a pamphlet during the early days of our website, and it still lives where I put it almost five years ago.
Robert Tiernan's November, 1995, appeal to the U.S. Court of Appeals, 10th Circuit, called "'In God We Trust' Appeal," is posted on the Freethought Today webpage.
There is a grand discussion of this topic at religioustolerance.org.
Then there's my funny bit about what some of us do about this offensive yarn.
Hope this does you some good. Let us know how it works out.
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