A California town is considering the display of a motto that will exclude many residents.
The Upland City Council (in San Bernardino County) is debating whether "In God We Trust" should be inscribed above the city emblem in its chambers. The resolution will be up for a vote soon. (It was on the agenda at the Nov. 14 meeting, but was postponed to an undetermined future date.) Make your opposition heard now.
"If you put up 'In God We Trust,' especially with a capital G, we all know that we're talking about the Christian God," a local resident stated very aptly at the Nov. 14 City Council meeting. "We're not talking about any of the other gods. When you have that up there, that excludes me."
The resident's insights convey the marginalizing effects of the proposal on more than a few Upland residents. Upland council members are elected to represent all citizens, including those of us who do not believe in a monotheistic god or any gods. "In God We Trust" is a religious statement. The history of the motto "In God We Trust" evidences no secular purpose; on the contrary, the motto was first adopted in 1956 during the Cold War, as a reaction to the purported "godlessness" of communism. "E Pluribus Unum" [out of many, one] is the entirely secular original motto selected by a distinguished committee of Thomas Jefferson, John Adams and Benjamin Franklin.
If you live in the area, please attend the Monday, Nov. 28 (or Dec. 12) public meetings and voice your opposition against the proposal to add a religious public display to the Upland City Council chambers.
When: Monday, Nov. 28, 2016 at 7 PM
Where: 460 N. Euclid Avenue, Upland, CA 91786
If you live in Upland, please be sure to indicate you're a local citizen.
(Use your own words or feel free to copy the language below.)
I strongly oppose the proposal to post a public display of the words "In God We Trust" in the Upton City Council chambers. The phrase is not representative of Upland residents. In fact, the Pew Research Center reports that nearly one-fourth of adult Americans and one in three young adults is nonreligious. To be accurate, the phrase would have to say, "In God Some of Us Trust," and wouldn't that be silly? "In God We Trust" is a Johnny-come-lately motto that was not adopted until 1956 during the Cold War. Our nation's first and original motto, "E Pluribus Unum" (From many, [come] one) was chosen by a distinguished committee of Thomas Jefferson, John Adams and Benjamin Franklin, celebrates diversity, and excludes no citizen. Why not display this historic motto instead?
City Council members are elected to represent all citizens, including those of us who do not believe in a monotheistic god or any gods. Please reject this divisive and religiously exclusionary proposal. Thank you.