'In God We Trust' is left off at least 50,000 new $1 coins. Was it done on purpose?
I've received a lot of feedback on last week's column about how difficult it is to find the words "In God We Trust" on the new $1 coin.
I raised the question of whether the ACLU was behind the design of the new coin. (The ACLU and militant atheists have been trying for years to remove all references to God on U.S. currency and public buildings.)
Predictably, the far left started making light of the controversy right away and denied there was a liberal conspiracy to remove the words "In God We Trust" from U.S. currency. That's typical of what the hysterical left does when anyone disagrees.
It now appears there's more to this "Godless dollar" controversy than we imagined.
The Associated Press reported Wednesday that "an unknown number" of new George Washington dollar coins were mistakenly struck without their edge inscriptions, including "In God We Trust."
These coins made it past U.S. Mint inspectors and into circulation. It's going to get a lot harder for the far left to explain how "In God We Trust" was left off these coins.
The new $1 coin has a likeness of George Washington on the front and the Statue of Liberty on the back. But unlike all U.S. coins minted in the past 50 years (including the tiny dime), the Mint couldn't find room to put "In God We Trust" on either side of the $1 coin.
Instead, the national motto is inscribed on the edge of the new coins along with "E Pluribus Unum" and the year and mint mark. The mint struck 300 million of the coins and released them into circulation on Feb. 15.
According to the AP, about half of the coins were minted in Philadelphia and the other half in Denver. So far, the Mint has only received reports of error coins coming from the Philadelphia facility, spokeswoman Becky Bailey told the Associated Press.
Bailey told the AP she didn't know how many "Godless coins" were released to the public.
Ron Guth, president of Professional Coin Grading Service, one of the world's largest coin authentication companies, told the AP he believes that at least 50,000 error coins were put in circulation.
The folks at the U.S. Mint, already dealing with the growing public backlash about the "Godless dollar" now find themselves trying to explain how 50,000 coins got past their elaborate inspection system. We're not talking about a few coins, but up to 50,000!!! Again, was the ACLU put in charge of the inspection process?
Production of the presidential dollar entails a "new, complex, high-volume manufacturing system" that the mint will adjust to eliminate any future defects, the mint said in a statement released Wednesday.
"We take this matter seriously. We also consider quality control a high priority. The agency is looking into the matter to determine a possible cause in the manufacturing process," the statement said.
The Associated Press article by Joann Loviglio also mentions the growing embarrassment at the U.S. Mint over the $1 coins, but she labels public concerns about the hard-to-find "In God We Trust" inscription as "e-mail conspiracy theories claiming that the religious motto was purposely omitted from the Washington dollars."
Everyday American citizens express resentment about the decision to minimize our national motto and the liberal-dominated media paints it as "conspiracy theories."
Who made the decision to hide "In God We Trust" on the edge of the new coins? And how did 50,000 coins make it past inspectors without the words "In God We Trust" on them?
The U.S. mint has 40 more opportunities to get it right. The Washington dollars are the first in a series that will feature every U.S. president in order that they served. The series will run until 2016.
As of today, there are no plans by the mint to put "In God We Trust" on the front of future dollar coins. Bailey told the AP that the striking of the Adams coin, expected to roll out in mid-May, "will proceed as planned."
It's time for the silent majority in this country to speak up. If you want "In God We Trust" to be featured prominently on U.S. currency, contact the U.S. Mint at http://www.usmint.gov
Write to the president, your Congressman and Senator and tell them to put pressure on the Mint to do the right thing and restore our national motto to our currency.
Tony Phyrillas is a leading conservative political columnist and blogger based in Pennsylvania. He is a veteran journalist with 25 years experience as a reporter, editor and columnist for several newspapers. Phyrillas received recognition for column writing in 2010 from the Associated Press Managing Editors, in 2007 from Suburban Newspapers of America and in 2006 from the Society of Professional Journalists, Keystone Chapter. A graduate of Penn State University, Phyrillas is the city editor and political columnist for The Mercury, a two-time Pulitzer Prize-winning daily newspaper in Pottstown, Pa. In addition to The Mercury website (www.pottsmerc.com), his columns are featured on more than a dozen political websites and blogs. Phyrillas is a frequent guest (and occasional host) on talk radio and has been a panelist on the "Journalists Roundtable" public affairs TV program on the Pennsylvania Cable Network (PCN). Phyrillas was named one of the '10 Leading Greek-American Bloggers in the World' in 2007 by Odyssey: The World of Greece magazine. BlogNetNews.com ranked Phyrillas the Most Influential Political Blogger in Pennsylvania for three consecutive years (2007-2010). You can follow Phyrillas on Twitter @TonyPhyrillas