Friday, March 18, 2011

Tell your rep: Support SOCAS and Vote No on "In God We Trust"

The House of Representatives Judiciary Committee will vote today on whether to reaffirm "In God We Trust" as the national motto of the United States, and encourage its public display in all public buildings, public schools, and other government institutions. The text of the resolution says in part, "... in times of national challenge or tragedy, the people of the United States have turned to God as their source for sustenance, protection, wisdom, strength, and direction." Some Americans have found in their religion the strength to bear up against difficult times; others have found reason in their religion to deny medical care to children, to commit murder, to collude with terrorism, to deny other Americans their equal part of civil liberty, and other anti-social behavior.

Congressman Randy Forbes (R-VA) is behind this resolution -- it may be said that he's leading the current legislative effort to confuse church and state. He and 64 co-sponsors (nearly all Republicans -- see list below) are hoping that the resolution's passage will encourage public display of "In God We Trust" in public schools and buildings -- a wholly unsavory practice that establishes one religious perspective (that of theism) as official, national, and patriotic, and promotes the notion that another religious perspective (that of atheism) is subversive, elitist, and un-American. Forbes is known for his promotion of Judeo-Christian doctrines and values, and for equating theism with patriotism e.g. "Recognition of the Supreme Being is the first, the most basic expression of Americanism."

The same bill failed last year -- can we do it again? How excellent it would be good if a significant portion of the large and growing population of secular Americans, would come forward and ask their Congresspeople to represent them just as well as their theistic neighbors, by voting against this resolution.

Congressman Forbes recently told Politico, "to a lot of people, the fact that this country was built on faith, the fact that faith is important, 'In God We Trust' is important." Of course, to a lot of people, that sounds like balderdash. This country was built on a Constitution, and according to that Constitution, the government use its authority to promote any position on the questions of religion, theistic or atheistic.

On this subject, Barry Lynn of Americans United for Separation of Church and State challenges the notion that efforts to change the national motto are motivated by anything other than the intention to adopt a slogan that represents ALL Americans. "No organization or group of graffiti artists is going around trying to cover up" the motto, Lynn told CNN, "the motto should be 'In God, or in no God, or in multiple gods we trust.'"

The text and status of House Continuing Resolution 13 can be found online at

Americans United has a webform which will allow you to instantly contact your Congressperson, at

The following U.S. Representatives have co-sponsored Randy Forbes' bill to reaffirm the national motto. Is your rep listed below? If so, please call 202-224-3121 today and say, "I'd like you to reconsider your co-sponsorship of House Continuing Resolution 13. The national motto 'In God We Trust' is a statement of religious belief, contrary to the letter and spirit of the First Amendment, and fails to adequately represent the diversity of views present in America. I want you to represent my interests, and the interests of all your constituents, by not affirming a divisive national motto."


  • Rep Aderholt, Robert B. [AL-4] - 3/11/2011
  • Rep Akin, W. Todd [MO-2] - 3/3/2011
  • Rep Alexander, Rodney [LA-5] - 1/26/2011
  • Rep Bachus, Spencer [AL-6] - 1/26/2011
  • Rep Bartlett, Roscoe G. [MD-6] - 3/3/2011
  • Rep Bishop, Rob [UT-1] - 3/16/2011
  • Rep Black, Diane [TN-6] - 3/3/2011
  • Rep Blackburn, Marsha [TN-7] - 1/26/2011
  • Rep Boren, Dan [OK-2] - 3/11/2011
  • Rep Broun, Paul C. [GA-10] - 1/26/2011
  • Rep Burgess, Michael C. [TX-26] - 1/26/2011
  • Rep Calvert, Ken [CA-44] - 3/11/2011
  • Rep Camp, Dave [MI-4] - 2/11/2011
  • Rep Canseco, Francisco "Quico" [TX-23] - 3/11/2011
  • Rep Chaffetz, Jason [UT-3] - 1/26/2011
  • Rep Coffman, Mike [CO-6] - 1/26/2011
  • Rep Conaway, K. Michael [TX-11] - 1/26/2011
  • Rep Crenshaw, Ander [FL-4] - 2/11/2011
  • Rep Davis, Geoff [KY-4] - 1/26/2011
  • Rep Ellmers, Renee L. [NC-2] - 2/16/2011
  • Rep Emerson, Jo Ann [MO-8] - 3/11/2011
  • Rep Flores, Bill [TX-17] - 1/26/2011
  • Rep Foxx, Virginia [NC-5] - 3/11/2011
  • Rep Garrett, Scott [NJ-5] - 1/26/2011
  • Rep Gingrey, Phil [GA-11] - 1/26/2011
  • Rep Goodlatte, Bob [VA-6] - 3/16/2011
  • Rep Griffin, Tim [AR-2] - 3/16/2011
  • Rep Griffith, H. Morgan [VA-9] - 2/16/2011
  • Rep Hall, Ralph M. [TX-4] - 3/16/2011
  • Rep Harper, Gregg [MS-3] - 3/3/2011
  • Rep Huizenga, Bill [MI-2] - 3/11/2011
  • Rep Jenkins, Lynn [KS-2] - 3/11/2011
  • Rep Jones, Walter B., Jr. [NC-3] - 1/26/2011
  • Rep King, Steve [IA-5] - 2/28/2011
  • Rep Kingston, Jack [GA-1] - 3/11/2011
  • Rep Kline, John [MN-2] - 1/26/2011
  • Rep Lankford, James [OK-5] - 1/26/2011
  • Rep Latta, Robert E. [OH-5] - 3/11/2011
  • Rep Lipinski, Daniel [IL-3] - 1/26/2011
  • Rep Manzullo, Donald A. [IL-16] - 3/16/2011
  • Rep McCotter, Thaddeus G. [MI-11] - 2/11/2011
  • Rep Miller, Candice S. [MI-10] - 3/16/2011
  • Rep Miller, Gary G. [CA-42] - 1/26/2011
  • Rep Miller, Jeff [FL-1] - 2/16/2011
  • Rep Neugebauer, Randy [TX-19] - 3/16/2011
  • Rep Nunnelee, Alan [MS-1] - 2/16/2011
  • Rep Pence, Mike [IN-6] - 1/26/2011
  • Rep Poe, Ted [TX-2] - 3/16/2011
  • Rep Pompeo, Mike [KS-4] - 2/17/2011
  • Rep Rahall, Nick J., II [WV-3] - 1/26/2011
  • Rep Roe, David P. [TN-1] - 1/26/2011
  • Rep Ross, Dennis [FL-12] - 2/8/2011
  • Rep Ross, Mike [AR-4] - 1/26/2011
  • Rep Shuster, Bill [PA-9] - 1/26/2011
  • Rep Simpson, Michael K. [ID-2] - 2/8/2011
  • Rep Stearns, Cliff [FL-6] - 3/11/2011
  • Rep Turner, Michael R. [OH-3] - 3/11/2011
  • Rep Upton, Fred [MI-6] - 3/11/2011
  • Rep Walberg, Tim [MI-7] - 2/8/2011
  • Rep Westmoreland, Lynn A. [GA-3] - 3/11/2011
  • Rep Wilson, Joe [SC-2] - 1/26/2011
  • Rep Wolf, Frank R. [VA-10] - 1/26/2011
  • Rep Young, Don [AK] - 3/11/2011
  • Rep Young, Todd C. [IN-9] - 3/3/2011

Is your Congressman listed above? If so, please call 202-224-3121 and encourage him or her to defend freedom of conscience and the separation of church of state, by voting against this resolution.

Use this webform,, to instantly contact your Congressperson.

NB: NB: A petition campaign to support this resolution is being led by Chaplain Gordon James Klingenschmitt. More about him at (and elsewhere online).

[Please circulate.]