Monday, May 05, 2008

More weirdness

The AP reported that a man in Zion, Illinois has petitioned the Lake County Circuit Court to change his name to “In God We Trust”. The article says “he's worried that atheists may succeed in removing the phrase… from U.S. currency.”

I’ve long said that American currency shouldn’t be promoting any religious belief, though most Americans don’t agree with me on that. Neither, it should be noted, would any conceivable majority on the US Supreme Court. So, the man’s concerns are at best unwarranted and at worst, paranoid. The phrase will stay on American money and—quite frankly—I really don’t care; there are far more important issues to deal with.

Apparently, part of the man’s motivation was that in 1992 a court found that Zion’s village motto “God Reigns” was unconstitutional (I think that their village seal had a cross and a crown, too, but I may not remember that correctly).

The article notes that “Zion was founded as a theocracy — by a sect that believed the Earth was flat.” When I was growing up, the village was a joke in the rest of Lake County, even among religious people, for how absurd it was. There was a high crime rate in Zion, and a lot of alcohol and drug-related problems there, too—all in a supposedly “religious” town. We used to joke that maybe their problems were caused by radiation from the nearby nuclear power plant.

I had a quick look to see if the wingnuts were championing the guy’s cause, but they’re not yet—or maybe he’s too nutty even for them. In any case, I got a good chuckle once again from the crazy things my fellow Americans get up to, and how weird Zion apparently still is. Still, wouldn’t you think there would be a few more important things for him to do with his time?

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