Friday, March 2, 2012

American Minute with Bill Federer Mar. 3 - National Motto "In God We Trust"

American Minute with Bill Federer
Mar. 3 - National Motto "In God We Trust"
On MARCH 3, 1931, Congress adopted "The Star-Spangled Banner" as the National Anthem, written by Francis Scott Key during the War of 1812:

The fourth verse states:

"O thus be it ever when free men shall stand,
Between their loved home and the war's desolation;
Blest with victory and peace, may the Heaven-rescued land,
Praise the Power that hath made and preserved us a nation!
Then conquer we must, when our cause it is just;
And this be our motto 'IN GOD IS OUR TRUST'!
And the Star Spangled Banner in triumph shall wave
Over the land of the free and the home of the brave!"

This 4th verse inspired Congress to place the motto on the nation's coins, MARCH 3, 1865, as House Speaker Schuyler Colfax noted:

"The last act of Congress ever signed by President Lincoln was one requiring that the motto...'IN GOD WE TRUST' should hereafter be inscribed upon all our national coin."

The motto, "IN GOD WE TRUST," is inscribed above the Speaker's rostrum in the U.S. House Chamber; above the Senate's main southern door; on a tribute block inside the Washington Monument; on a bronze plaque in the main lobby east wall of the Longworth House Office Building; at the southwest entrance west wall of Dirksen Office Building; and on a stained-glass window in the U.S. Capitol's Chapel.

President Truman stated October 30, 1949:

"When the U.S. was established...the motto was 'IN GOD WE TRUST.' That is still our motto and we still place our firm trust in God."

President Eisenhower stated at a ceremony issuing the first stamp bearing the motto "IN GOD WE TRUST," April 8, 1954:

"America's greatness has been based upon a spiritual quality...symbolized by the stamp that will be issued today...The letter, on the outside he places a message: 'Here is...the land that lives in respect for the Almighty's mercy to us.'...Each of us...fastening such a stamp on a letter, cannot fail to feel something of the inspiration that we do whenever 'IN GOD WE TRUST.'"

The same day, President Eisenhower told a Women's Conference:

"I have just come from assisting in the dedication of a new stamp...on it also is stated 'IN GOD WE TRUST'...All of us mere mortals are dependent upon the mercy of a Superior Being...Every single individual who buys the stamp...sends a message...that this is the land of the free and 'IN GOD WE TRUST.'"  

President Eisenhower stated at the 75th Anniversary of the Incandescent Lamp, October 24, 1954:

"Atheism substitutes men for the Supreme Creator and this leads inevitably to domination and dictatorship...It is because we believe that God intends all men to be free and equal that we demand free government. Our Government is servant, not master, our chosen representatives are our equals, not our czars or commissars.

We must jealously guard our foundation in faith. For on it rests the ability of the American individual to live and thrive in this blessed land-and to be able to help other less fortunate people to achieve freedom and individual opportunity. These we take for granted, but to others they are often only a wistful dream.

'IN GOD WE TRUST.' Often have we heard the words of this wonderful American motto. Let us make sure that familiarity has not made them meaningless for us. We carry the torch of freedom as a sacred trust for all mankind. We do not believe that God intended the light that He created to be put out by men."

On July 11, 1954, a month after the phrase "under God" was added to the Pledge of Allegiance, Congress enacted Public Law 84-140 placing the motto on all national currency.

In 1956, "IN GOD WE TRUST," was adopted by Congress as the official United States National Motto. John F. Kennedy stated February 9, 1961:

"The guiding principle of this Nation has been, is now, and ever shall be 'IN GOD WE TRUST.'"

President Ronald Reagan stated in his National Day of Prayer Proclamation, March 19, 1981:

"Our Nation's motto 'IN GOD WE TRUST'--was not chosen lightly. It reflects a basic recognition that there is a divine authority in the universe to which this Nation owes homage."

Reagan stated at a White House observance of National Day of Prayer, May 6, 1982:

"Our faith in God is a mighty source of strength. Our Pledge of Allegiance states that we are 'one nation under God,' and our currency bears the motto, 'IN GOD WE TRUST.'"

Reagan remarked after meeting Pope John Paul II in Vatican City, June 7, 1982:

"Ours is a nation grounded on faith, faith in man's ability through God-given freedom to live in tolerance and peace and faith that a Supreme Being guides our daily striving in this world. Our national motto, 'IN GOD WE TRUST,' reflects that faith."

President George H.W. Bush met with Amish and Mennonite Leaders at Penn Johns Elementary School in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, March 22, 1989. When a Mennonite Leader stated:

"We want to keep that theme, 'IN GOD WE TRUST,' which is stamped on our money,"

President Bush replied:

"It's staying there. Nobody can knock that off."

President George H.W. Bush remarked on the National Day of Prayer, May 4, 1989:

"We are one nation under God. And we were placed here on Earth to do His work. And our work has gone on now for more than 200 years in the Nation--a work best embodied in four simple words: 'IN GOD WE TRUST.'"

In a 2003 joint poll by USA Today, CNN, and Gallup reported that 90% of Americans support "IN GOD WE TRUST" on U.S. coins.

In 2006, on the 50th anniversary of its adoption, the Senate reaffirmed "IN GOD WE TRUST" as the official national motto.

In July 2010, a Federal Appeals Court in the District of Columbia ruled 3-0 the National Motto was constitutional under the First Amendment, quoting the 1970 decision, Aronow v. United States:

"It is quite obvious that the national motto and slogan on coinage and currency 'IN GOD WE TRUST' has nothing whatsoever to do with the establishment of religion."

On March 7, 2011, the Supreme Court denied a challenge by an atheist who was intolerant of the National Motto, by letting the decision of the Federal Appeals Court stand.

On November 1, 2011, the House of Representatives passed an additional resolution in a 396-9 vote reaffirming "IN GOD WE TRUST" as the official motto of the United States.
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