God Is Not An Endangered Species

There’s freedom of religion, which we all acknowledge, but
While true freedom seems a rare thing… of religion, there’s a glut.

The New York Times today has an Op-Ed piece by Frank Bruni that is well worth reading, entitled “The God Glut”.

We have God on our dollars, God in our pledge of allegiance, God in our Congress. Last year, the House took the time to vote, 396 to 9, in favor of a resolution affirming “In God We Trust” as our national motto. How utterly needless, unless I missed some insurrectionist initiative to have that motto changed to “Buck Up, Beelzebub” or “Surrender Dorothy.”

We have God in our public schools, a few of which cling to creationism, and we have major presidential candidates — Rick Perry, Michele Bachmann, Rick Santorum — who use God in general and Christianity in particular as cornerstones of their campaigns. God’s initial absence from the Democratic Party platform last summer stirred more outrage among Americans than the slaughter in Syria will ever provoke.

God’s wishes are cited in efforts to deny abortions to raped women and civil marriages to same-sex couples. In our country God doesn’t merely have a place at the table. He or She is the host of the prayer-heavy dinner party.

That’s just a meaty bit out of the middle; the whole essay is powerful. None of it will come as any surprise to long time FtB readers–perhaps the surprise is that it is in the New York Times.

Well worth reading; well worth sharing.


  1. Cuttlefish says

    Dangit–just realized, this means I need to de-god another batch of coins. “We have god on our dollars” is the argument, so there go another bunch. Fortunately, I’ve been saving up, so the big winners will be those who would ordinarily be getting parking tickets at local meters.

    Lucky bastards.

  2. Thinker says

    the big winners will be those who would ordinarily be getting parking tickets at local meters

    Do you put coins into parking meters for people who have forgotten to “feed it” enough?

    This was used by students at a university in one of our major cities as a fund raiser: if they saw a meter maid, they would feed the meter a coin for anyone who had forgotten, and then place a note on the windshield saying “We just helped you avoid a parking ticket of so and so much. If you appreciated this, please make a suitable donation to our party fund”, with details of the account number. It worked quite well…

    Our coins are godless, but apparently, Xe can still work in mysterious ways!

  3. Pierce R. Butler says

    We have secularism on our dollars, too: translate that “Novus Ordo Seclorum” from the ribbon underneath the pyramid on the back of every $1, next time the subject comes up.

  4. Joan says

    America’s Godless? Well that’s news to me.
    God’s on most everything there is to see.
    There is God on our dollar and God in the pledge.
    Citing God in campaign speeches gives you an edge.

    “God Bless America” used to be sung.
    Now we rarely hear any speech where it’s not hung
    On the end, lest the audience think you’re not true
    To God and America, red, white and blue.

    There’s no prohibition and more than a smidgen
    Of God in comparative class on religion.
    His ‘young earth creation’ is found in some schools.
    Teaching bible as science is one of their tools.

    And though it’s the law we will just have to wait
    To see separation of church from the state.
    It’s a national holiday, thrice, we all know,
    Easter, Thanksgiving and Christmas. Ho Ho!

    It’s Easter and Christmas all over the place.
    If it’s not your religion it’s still in your face.
    Yet each year at Christmas such wailing takes place.
    “They just moved a crèche from a government space!”

    “God’s persecuted! Just read your e-mail!”
    And the cry is reborn, just like Christ, without fail.
    No “war against Christmas”, yet God wins again.
    With faux persecution talk God is still “in”.

  5. brucegee1962 says

    Perhaps “Surrender Dorothy” wouldn’t be the best motto, but it’s interesting that that movie was the first place I ever heard our actual motto. Do you remember who says it?

  6. F [disappearing] says

    Surprised it was in any major publication.


    While cool, that is illegal in most places and gets people arrested. Doing it as an organized effort would not be a smart thing for an organization to do. Maybe they got some sort of dispensation?

  7. brucecoppola says

    #8: The Wizard (after being reviealed as a medicine show huckster) – IIRC to Dorothy when he says he’ll take her back home to “the land of E Pluribus Unum”.

  8. Thinker says

    #9 F:

    I think they probably did the “We’d rather ask for forgiveness afterwards than permission beforehand” thing. In any case, I never heard of any legal repercussions… (Actually, I am not sure if it is illegal over here.)

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