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A bill was passed Tuesday in Oklahoma’s House of Representatives that puts the state one step closer to adding the national motto “In God We Trust” to more than 300 state buildings.

The Oklahoma House voted to support House Bill 3817, with a final tally of 76 yeas, and 20 nays, with 4 legislators excused.

Authored by House Speaker Charles McCall, HB 3817 would have the Office of Management and Enterprise Services display the national motto on 342 state buildings.

“The placement and size of the display shall be in keeping with the placement and size of the display of the national motto in the United States Capitol Visitor Center,” reads the proposed legislation in part.

“The display of the national motto shall not be construed to mean that the State of Oklahoma favors any particular religion or denomination thereof over others.”

“The display of the national motto shall not be construed to mean that the State of Oklahoma favors any particular religion or denomination thereof over others.”

Republican state Rep. Jay Steagall defended the legislation, dismissing in a statement last month any church and state separation concerns.

“Our government is based on the idea that our inalienable rights are granted to us by our creator,” Steagall said, according to Tulsa World. “It is impossible to separate church from state. And our founders said we should not do that, actually.”

The Freedom From Religion Foundation argued in an action alert that the proposed legislation was an example of “government-sponsored Christian proselytizing.”

“While politicians claim that these laws are intended to showcase the national motto or inspire patriotism, it is clear that their true purpose is to peddle religiosity to a captive audience,” stated FFRF. “These laws are about advancing the Big Lie that the United States was ‘founded on God’ or Christianity, dismantling the wall of separation between religion and government.”

The statement “In God We Trust” became the official motto of the United States in 1956 when President Dwight Eisenhower signed a law that also put the motto on the currency.

In recent years, groups have reportedly tried to remove the motto from U.S. money and elsewhere under the belief that it violates church and state separation.

 

Oklahoma One Step Closer To Putting ‘In God We Trust’ On Over 300 State Buildings  was originally published on blackamericaweb.com

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