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Published On: Tue, Aug 25th, 2015

Atheists sue to remove ‘In God We Trust’ from police cars

Alliance Defending Freedom sent letters Tuesday to 17 sheriff’s offices and police departments across the nation after they received complaints from an atheist group wrongly stating that displaying the official U.S. national motto, “In God We Trust,” on department vehicles is unconstitutional.

“Americans should not be forced to abandon their heritage simply to appease the animosity of anti-religious groups toward anything that references God,” said ADF Legal Counsel Matt Sharp. “These departments should simply ignore the unfounded demands from these groups, especially since courts have upheld the national motto in a wide variety of other contexts for decades.”

“Decisions from federal courts have repeatedly and consistently rejected claims that use of the national motto violates the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment,” the ADF letter explains, noting that, as a federal appeals court has ruled, “The motto symbolizes the historical role of religion in our society, formalizes our medium of exchange, fosters patriotism, and expresses confidence in the future. The motto’s primary effect is not to advance religion.”
Photo via wikimedia commons uploaded by User Philip

Photo via wikimedia commons uploaded by User Philip

“Many of these same motives underlay the decision by your department and others across the country to display the national motto on vehicles: promoting patriotism; acknowledging the role of religion in our society; and acknowledging the longstanding historical practice of seeking divine protection for those in harm’s way,” the letter continues.

ADF sent letters to all of the departments and offices that received letters from the atheist group, Freedom From Religion Foundation: Bay County Sheriff’s Office, Fla.; Bonifay Police Department, Fla.; Marion County Sheriff’s Office, Fla.; Walton County Sheriff’s Office, Fla.; Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office, Ill.; Greenup County Sheriff’s Office, Ky.; Amory Police Department, Miss.;Brookfield Police Department, Mo.; Laclede County Sheriff’s Department, Mo.; Lawrence County Sheriff’s Office, Mo.; Linn County Sheriff’s Department, Mo.; Ralls County Sheriff’s Office, Mo.;Randolph County Sheriff’s Office, Mo.; Stone County Sheriff’s Department, Mo.; Halifax County Sheriff’s Office, N.C.; Elizabethton Police Department, Tenn.; and Culpeper County Sheriff’s Office, Va.

“It’s shameful for groups like Freedom From Religion Foundation to target police departments and the men and women who honorably serve our citizens with these completely illegitimate demands,” added Sharp. “We hope these departments will disregard these demands as the distortions of the First Amendment that they obviously are.”
Alliance Defending Freedom is an alliance-building, non-profit legal organization that advocates for the right of people to freely live out their faith.
Photo/Nodar Kherkheulidze via wikimedia commons

Photo/Nodar Kherkheulidze via wikimedia commons

 

 

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  1. BOOM: TEXAS Police Have EPIC Response To Attacks On COPS... Liberals Are FURIOUS #BlueLivesMatter says:

    […] The Global Dispatch has this– Alliance Defending Freedom sent letters Tuesday to 17 sheriff’s offices and police departments across the nation after they received complaints from an atheist group wrongly stating that displaying the official U.S. national motto, “In God We Trust,” on department vehicles is unconstitutional. […]

  2. tim says:

    Could you point to any lawsuit FFRF filed as mentioned in your article? (Hint: they never filed any lawsuit.)

  3. Copyleft says:

    So… the headline here is mistaken. FFRF did not ‘sue’ anybody. They sent letters.

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