The Tennessee legislature has passed a bill that would require all public schools in the state to display the words "In God We Trust" in a prominent location. The governor, Republican Bill Haslam is expected to sign the legislation into law very soon.
The bill, HB 2368, was sponsored by state Rep. Susan Lynn (R). According to the website of the Tennessee General Assembly, the "National Motto in the Classroom Act" would require "each local education agency to display the national motto, 'In God We Trust,' in a prominent location in each school."
"Our national motto is on our money," said Rep. Lynn. "It's on our license plates. It's part of our national anthem. Our national motto and founding documents are the cornerstone of freedom and we should teach our children about these things."
Placing the motto on American currency was established by Congress in 1864. The first coins with "In God We Trust" inscribed on them were the one- and two-cent coins in 1864. Since 1938, all U.S. coins bear the motto, according to the Treasury Department. Congress declared "In God We Trust" as the nation's motto in 1956.
When Gov. Haslam signs the bill into law, which he is expected to do, the law will go into effect immediately.