Atheist Group Threatens Suit more than Mississippi ‘In God We Trust’ License Plates

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Atheist Group Threatens Suit more than Mississippi ‘In God We Trust’ License Plates


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A national atheist group is threatening to sue the state of Mississippi more than a new law that tends to make license plates declaring “In God We Trust” the default plates in the state.

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The American Humanist Association’s legal center sent a letter April four to the lawyer common and the commissioner of the division of income, saying atheists and humanists ought to not have to buy a specialty plate in order to steer clear of conveying the message. 

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As opposed to other states which supply only a specialty “In God We Trust” license plate, Mississippi’s plate is normal and issued to just about every driver.

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“We hereby demand written assurances that methods will be taken so that Mississippi drivers can, with out paying any added charge, show a state-issued license plate that does not make a theistic affirmation,” the letter says. 

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Ideally, the letter says, that would involve a new plate design and style for the complete state. Alternatively, although, a neutral plate ought to be produced accessible to these who want it.

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“Mississippi’s law violates the Initially Amendment rights of atheists in accordance with firmly settled Supreme Court precedent,” said Monica Miller, American Humanist Association senior counsel. “The Supreme Court has produced clear that the state can’t force motorists to show an ideological message they deem unacceptable on their license plates.”

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Also, the letter says that “[b]eyond violating the Totally free Speech rights of nontheistic Mississippians, compelling such citizens to show ‘In God We Trust’ or spend a penalty contravenes the Religion Clauses of the Initially Amendment.”

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Income Commissioner Herb Frierson said state lawyers are reviewing the letter, according to the Jackson Clarion Ledger. 

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Michael Foust is a freelance writer. Stop by his weblog, MichaelFoust.com.

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Photo courtesy: Unsplash/Fred Kearney

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