A North Carolina county’s decision to place “In God We Trust” on the outside walls of its courthouse has spurred a community debate over church-state separation.
In early March, the Yadkin County Board of Commissioners unanimously voted to display the motto at two places on the Yadkin County Courthouse, reported the Winston-Salem Journal.
The proposal was presented to the board by a local Baptist pastor and a member of the U.S. Motto Action Committee, which apparently will pay for the displays.
The board agreed to the idea before a crowded meeting room of more than 100 people. According to the Journal, only two people at the meeting spoke in opposition.
Victor Seider, a resident and member of Americans United for Separation of Church and State, stood before the room and read a portion of the First Amendment that includes the principle of church-state separation.
Amy Crump, an ordained Lutheran minister, also said before the overwhelmingly pro-motto audience that the motto excludes people who are not Christian.
County Commissioner Leon Casstevens, however, was unapologetic about the board’s action.
“If you’re going to live in Yadkin County,” he said, “then you need to think like Yadkin County.”