Irvine, California, will become the 20th city in Orange County and one of hundreds across the U.S. to display the common phrase that appears on our money and around the nation, in a government meeting place. Tuesday night, the Irvine City Council voted to display the phrase, “In God We Trust,” in its council chambers.
The council also made the decision to include a second phrase in the council’s meeting chambers, “e pluribus unum.” The phrase is Latin for “out of many, one.”
Although Tuesday’s agenda only called for a vote on the first display, according to Voice of OC, Councilwoman Lynn Schott proposed having both mottos emblazoned. Schott’s proposal came after several public speakers came forward saying that simply promoting the motto, “In God We Trust,” would alienate residents of different beliefs.
The vote was 4-1. The single oppositional vote came from the council’s only Democrat, Councilwoman Beth Krom, Voice of OC reported.
According speakers and members of the Republican Party, the display is meant to serve as a reminder to the city’s children, of the principles of faith held by the nation’s founding fathers, Voice of OC reported.
Mayor Steven Choi, who first proposed the addition of “In God We Trust” to the council chambers, pointed out the popularity of the motto, citing recent data that shows over 500 U.S. cities and counties have approved similar displays, CBS Los Angles reported.
“It’s simply honoring our national motto and our national trend, so we can come under the respect of our heritage,” said Choi, who is known to be a deeply religious Christian, according to Voice of OC.
Krom as well as others pointed out that although it has been ruled constitutional, the message makes people who don’t believe in God uncomfortable. Instead, they said that the city should strive to incorporate more welcoming and inclusive messages, Voice of OC reported.
“I would like to know what public interest will be served by doing this other than jumping on a bandwagon I don’t think we should be jumping on,” Krom said.
Irvine holds more than 80 institutions of faith, The Orange County Register reported. So far, the exact location of where the mottos will be displayed is unknown. Choi and Schott will be working on the design with city staff, before bringing it back to council for approval, according to Voice of OC.
Photo credit: The Orange County Register