By Andrew L. Seidel
Christian nationalism will greet schoolchildren returning to classrooms in 16 states this fall. New laws in Louisiana, Arkansas, Kentucky, Florida, and South Dakota encourage or require public schools to display the divisive national motto: In God We Trust.
Piecemeal reporting on the laws gives the impression that state legislators around the country are spontaneously discovering the value of imposing a religious slogan on a captive audience of schoolchildren. But pious wave is no coincidence, these laws are part of a crusade to rewrite American history and the American identity. They were spawned by Project Blitz, a Christian nationalist crusade that seeks to redefine what it means to be an American—so that to be an American is to be a Christian and to be a Christian is to be an American—and then to rewrite the law accordingly. Project Blitz’s goal is to favor Christians, creating a special class, while relegating everyone else to, at best, second-class status.
Emblazoning In God We Trust in public schools furthers that goal. The new laws in most of these states mirror the model bill in the Project Blitz handbook. The laws are not so much a camel’s nose under the tent, as they are tethering the camel inside the tent and expecting other people’s children to worship it.
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