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Pennsylvania May Make 'In God We Trust' Motto Mandatory in Public Schools

( [email protected] ) Oct 25, 2013 04:09 PM EDT
Legislation sponsored by State Representative Rick Saccone would require that public school districts in Pennsylvania post the national motto, "In God We Trust" in school buildings if it is passed. Saccone says that the act is widely supported in the state where, according to Wikipedia, 43% of residents regularly attend church.
'In God We Trust' on U.S. Dollar Bill

Legislation sponsored by State Representative Rick Saccone would require that public school districts in Pennsylvania post the national motto, "In God We Trust" in school buildings if it is passed. Saccone says that the act is widely supported in the state where, according to Wikipedia, 43% of residents regularly attend church.

"In God We Trust" was made the national motto of the United States in 1956 under Dwight D. Eisenhower. James Pollock, a Christian governor of Pennsylvania, put the motto on coins when he was appointed by Abraham Lincoln as the director of the United States Mint. Throughout the years, the motto has been printed on numerous denominations of U.S. currency.

"'In God We Trust' is part of the history and heritage of the United States. On April 22, 2014, we will celebrate the 150th anniversary of our national motto 'In God We Trust' on our coins," the National Motto Display Act reads. Opponents of the legislation say that the act may trivialize the national motto, and that displaying the motto in public schools would go against the principle of separating the church and state. Proponents, however, hope to "increase student understanding of and familiarity with American historical documents."

The legislation suggests that "In God We Trust" be displayed prominently, and encourages student artwork contests for creative ways to display it in each school building.