Wednesday, 22 July 2009
Recently, I did a post about having “In God We Trust” on license plates. It seems this “In God We Trust” debate is one that is going to be continuing for a while. In an article I read online, I learned that a group called Freedom From Religion Foundation (an association of atheists and agnostics) has filed a federal lawsuit to stop the engraving of “In God We Trust” and the Pledge of Allegiance at the Capitol Visitor Center in Washington. The group is claiming that the engraving “will give actual and apparent government endorsement and advancement of religion," while excluding nonreligious Americans.” Those who are in favor of the engraving are saying that the engravings are there to be historical references to America’s Christian Heritage.
Now I can understand both sides of this debate. I really am not sure what side I would pick if I had to choose between the two. I don’t even know if this debate is really worth it. In the long run of things, this debate isn’t going to be a life-changing matter. The thing that bugs me is that both sides are making such a big deal about a few words. As we all know, actions speak louder then words. The phrase “In God We Trust” means nothing to anyone unless there is an action behind it. I don’t look at the money in my wallet and think “Oh, that’s right. I trust in God.” I don’t take bills out and stare at them seeing what's on them. I know most people just look to see if it’s a one dollar bill, five dollar bill, etc.
The other thing that is starting to bother me is people making a big deal out of America’s Christian heritage. Yes, it’s a good thing we had it, but the America we started out as is not what we are today. Frankly, I’m not sure how I feel anymore about having America being labeled “a Christian nation.” While we have the background, it isn’t necessarily what we are today. People judge Christians based on what they do. Well, people are prone to mistakes and Christians will make just as many as anyone else. I’m not sure if I can look around at what our nation does and say it is “Christian.” We may call it one but that isn’t always what others are going to see it as. The word Christian and the phrase “In God We Trust” are just labels and words. They mean nothing without someone or something that believes. I think we need to spend less time concentrating on these and more on how we live our lives. I know I need to.
How much does having or not having this phrase really affect America?