The governing board of the Texas Department of Motor Vehicles has approved a "Calvary Hill" license plate featuring the phrase "One State Under God".
A Christian youth organization, Glory Gang, which is an outreach dedicated to helping at-risk kids age 3 to 12 years old, will receive a portion of each purchase of the plates. This is typical for specialty plates of any kind.
There are several specialty plates already available in Texas including, "God Bless Texas" and "God Bless America."
Kathy Miller, president of "Texas Freedom Network," is blaming Governor Rick Perry for creating an environment that allows such things to happen.
Other atheist groups are mad.
However, there is a differing view within the Christian community. Imagine that.
Rev. Larry Bethune, pastor of University Baptist Church in Austin says, "I'm disappointed to see the state endorse a particular faith, even if it's mine and to see Christians trivialize our faith into slogans and symbols on the back of a bumper."
University Baptist Church, affiliated with the American Baptists, defines itself as a "Progressive Voice of Faith."
However, Jonathan Saenz, director of legislative affairs for Liberty Institute said, "Private speech, protected by the First Amendment should not be second class treatment...Anyone who opposes this plate either doesn't know the law or has no respect for the First Amendment."
Should this be allowed under the First Amendment? If so, does this trivialize the Christian faith? Or is an appropriate Christian expression of free speech?
I personally agree with Liberty Institute regarding the First Amendment. I disagree with the pastor. In this culture of images and sound bites, I do not believe Christian expressions placed in the public square trivializes Christianity.
The threat is from those who seek to silence any public Christian expression. The greater threat is our allowing them to do so.
What do you think?
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