"In God We Trust" - Violation of the 1st Amendment?

I've heard and read about many atheists complaining about the motto used on US money, saying that it violates the first amendment of the US constitution, separation of church and state.

I also know of some atheists who don't really care. They say there's nothing we can do about it, and even if we could, "why bother? It's only money."

It's not only money though.
I recently went to a water park where "In God We Trust" was printed on the entrance sign. Why is this? Was it meant to be a believers-only water park? If so, they should have warned me before I drove the hour-and-a-half.

I want to know what your opinions are on the matter. Should we continue protesting, marking out the motto on our money? Or just leave it be because it doesn't really matter?

I'm curious.

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Take care guys- it's technically illegal:


Section 333. Mutilation of national bank obligations

Whoever mutilates, cuts, defaces, disfigures, or perforates, or
unites or cements together, or does any other thing to any bank
bill, draft, note, or other evidence of debt issued by any national
banking association, or Federal Reserve bank, or the Federal
Reserve System, with intent to render such bank bill, draft, note,
or other evidence of debt unfit to be reissued, shall be fined
under this title or imprisoned not more than six months, or both.


Whoever fraudulently alters, defaces, mutilates, impairs, diminishes, falsifies, scales, or lightens any of the coins coined at the mints of the United States, or any foreign coins which are by law made current or are in actual use or circulation as money within the United States; or whoever fraudulently possesses, passes, utters, publishes, or sells, or attempts to pass, utter, publish, or sell, or brings into the United States, any such coin, knowing the same to be altered, defaced, mutilated, impaired, diminished, falsified, scaled, or lightened—
Shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than five years, or both.


I know the criteria for breaking the law is rendering it "unusable", or using it fraudulantly, but I wouldn't put it past the hysterical fundie hive mind to whip enough demagoguery that it impacted badly on the overall image of atheists. You just know that a story like this would get boiled down into a "four legs good, two legs bad" simplification, and be parroted forever as "atheists will happily break the law when it suits them", or "atheists want to destroy this country, look what they tried to do!"
look just be glad your aethiest because look at it this way, the doller bill (s) coins and everything will rot anyways, who cares its currency, now if it said something like fk you on the back then id question it even at that id let it go because its funny, who cares if it violates the constitution or not, in my opinion seperation of church and state, i find many churches inside states anyways.....
I think in some sense, having, "In God We Trust" on our money IS saying "fk you." It has that meaning not only to atheists, but to anyone that worships a god whose name is not God. Not to be too literal, but I would think it was offensive not just to the worshipers, but to the players themselves. So, not only would the believers of gods other than one named God feel like a big FU was leveled at them, the actual gods not named God are having a finger flipped their way just for good measure.
I found this a while ago. Its an odd thing, England not to suck -

Everyone should fight this bllshit for it isnt right to discriminate someone cuz they are atheist, or doesnt beleive in god.
I think that it's a violation of separation of church and state, but I also think it's a waste of time to be petitioning to get our currency reprinted and our pledge of allegiance reworded.
Thats where the Amero comes in. lol
It doesn't bother me at all that the motto "In God We Trust" appears on our coinage & currency; indeed, as a numismatist I enjoy this quaint reminder of a crucial time in American history. It was in 1861 that a Pennsylvania preacher, the Rev. Watkinson, proposed to Salmon P. Chase, Secretary of the Treasury under president Lincoln, that a reference to god be included on our coinage (of course, he probably used an upper-case 'G'). His motivation for proposing this was The Civil War, which began that same year and which would cause more American deaths than any other conflict. To give credit to this preacher, the motto he proposed was not "In God We Trust" but rather "God, Liberty, Law." After eight years of an imperial president who spent most of his two unfortunate terms trampling all over our liberties and our laws perhaps it's time to reconsider the Rev. Watkinson's original proposal.

Anyway, three years later the motto "In God We Trust" appeared on the new 2-cent piece. In 1866 it appeared on the quarter, half-dollar, dollar and all gold coins. In 1909 it appeared on the penny (the first year of the Lincoln cent), in 1916 the dime, in 1938 the nickel and in 1955 it was made mandatory on all our coinage by an act of Congress. In 1907 Theodore Roosevelt oversaw the designs of new $10 and $20 gold pieces and he asked that the motto not appear on these because he felt it was blasphemous for 'God' to appear on money. There was a public outcry and the designs of the coins were reworked to include the motto.

And that's probably more than you ever wanted to know about "In God We Trust." So anyway, perhaps you could think of this motto as a vestigial outgrowth produced during a violent period of our country's history while our currency was evolving, rather than as a collective profession of faith.
I often have been thinking about how nationalism, religion, and war often are tide together. Even Stalin used religion.
The reason 'God' money -- and chaplains in Congress for that matter -- are a problem is that Xians always cite these two things as proof that we are a Xian nation. "If we're not a Xian nation, how come God is on our money, and they always open sessions of Congress with a prayer?" They ask. That alone is reason enough that it is a violation; it misrepresents who & what America is.
It seems like there are two ways to look at this issue. First, we assume that "god" means some sort of god and is in fact a religious construct. Second, we instead assume that "god" has no religious connotation and merely reflects tradition.

The courts have generally used the second perspective in allowing "In God We Trust" to stand, but it has never made much sense to me. It would be like having our national motto be "In Slavery We Trust" and then claiming that "slavery" doesn't really mean slavery. We wouldn't stand for that, and frankly, we shouldn't stand for the god garbage either.

For me, the first perspective (i.e., that "god" means some sort of god) is the only one that makes sense. And from this perspective, yes, it should be abolished as the national motto for what was once a secular democracy.




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