Cave City stands strong... Will not remove "In God We Trust"

Wednesday, September 2, 2015
The entire city of Cave City stands behind their police force, including Mayor Ron Burge. The city refused to succumb to pressure from the Freedom From Religion Foundation in Wisconsin, after receiving a letter stating that an unnamed citizen was offended by the statement "In God We Trust" on the department 's vehicles. Residents and many people from all over the nation have offered their support for the decision not to remove the decals.

Cave City has received an outpouring of support over the last few weeks after first designing and installing decals with the words, "In God We Trust" on their police vehicles. While they have received support from not only the community, but also regionally by law enforcement offices, the City of Cave City came under national scrutiny recently when the Wisconsin based Freedom From Religion Foundation wrote a letter to the city wanting Cave City and another, the Hemstead County Sheriff's Office, to remove the decals.

The nonprofit agency claimed in its letter, the message can offend non-Christians and subjects them to unwarranted prejudice. The foundation's co-president says she intends to sue if the phrase isn't removed, but didn't give further details.

After receiving the letter, the Cave City Police Department's Facebook page became flooded with comments of support and even a group setting up a fundraiser to help pay for potential legal fees and selling stickers that say and t-shirts to support the department.

On Aug. 25 Mayor Ron Burge and Chief Nate Stephens met and the chief offered this statement, "I have met with the Mayor and Sgt. Barnett. I have also read the letter that was sent to me from the Freedom From Religion Foundation. After meeting and discussing, "In God We Trust" will not be removed from the patrol vehicles. The letter stated that a "concerned citizen from Cave City" was offended by the national motto being placed on our vehicles. However, they have not been in to visit with me to express their concern. We truly appreciate all the support and I believe that it has been expressed that the majority not only approves of the lettering, but is also proud it's there."

The community continues to rally behind the department and others have adopted the saying including the city of Beebe. The Beebe City Council voted unanimously last week to display the words in 49-inch lettering in its meeting room.

While most have stood strong, Jonesboro Mayor Harold Perrin chose to remove the scripture from the Jonesboro E-911 Facebook page.

When the city first began to implement the lettering, Police Chief Nathan Stephens told KAIT that is when he first saw the quote on the Stone County Police Department's vehicles and decided it was time to put it on theirs. "And if there has ever been a time where the police departments need to trust in God, I believe it is right now," Stephens said. "Of course there are all these news stories about Ferguson and Baltimore and I have personally been in a firefight and when you come out of one of those you know you're trusting in God." Stephens said he has spoken with other police chiefs around Sharp County who are considering putting the quote on their cars as well.

The city has no plans to remove the decals and are overwhelmed by the support. Cave City officer John Marlow said, "I am absolutely amazed at the support that we are getting from the citizens of Cave City and folks all over the United States. I'm working today in Cave City for the police department and I could not tell you how many people that have stopped me and that I have talked to that are supporting CCPD and this cause for what we feel is only right! Not one person has asked me to remove "In GOD we trust" as a matter of fact it is the opposite! People offering donations to help with any possible legal support. I am just amazed."

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  • I bought a home here in the Great State of Arkansas in December 2008. I'll never forget the day standing at the Best Western looking across the woods and exclaiming with delight that somewhere out there among the trees was my home. My friend Katie was on the phone with her Mom and said that we had better get going because an ice storm was on the way.

    "Ice storm!?" I said "What's an ice storm?"

    It was the epic ice storm of 2009 that made me realize how much I loved Arkansas and that I was truly in God's country.

    An ice storm? One may wonder why an ice storm and not just any ice storm, but the epic ice storm of 2009, would make one fall in Love with Arkansas.

    Care to know? Curiosity piqued? Then contact the Editor of this publication and subscribe to a full year ,then they shall contact me and I will let you know.

    Just kidding. I'm just attempting humor in it's written form. Although a subscription would be nice. Wish I could afford one. It sucks to be poor economically.

    Back to my story which is a comment to the above article ,"Cave City stands strong...will not remove "In God we Trust"

    I was renting a cabin by the Current River just outside of Pocahontas when the ice storm hit.

    Stood in awe as the ice snapped massive trees and took down power poles as far as the eye can see.

    By then it was just myself and a young couple and their two little girls left at the rental cabins. The Father was concerned about driving over the downed power lines and called the Pocahontas Police Department. A deputy arrived and advised us to back away for safety's sake then proceeded to put his own Life on the line and walk across the possible live wires. I was moved and impressed in a way that words can't quite convey. (a couple of months later I did give a "hat tip" to said deputy in a letter to Editor)

    The Chief of Police of Truman did give his Life in order to save a family from falling trees. To this day when I think or read/hear of Truman I think of him. And I think of the brave deputy that risked his Life for ours.

    I was falling in Love with Arkansas!

    So, when I heard that Tim Evans had hired Russ Huntsman to adhere "In God we Trust!"to the Police cars and Fire Engines here in Sharp County, I knew that it was much much more than an historic event. It was proof that I was home here in God's country. Here in Arkansas! (with the exception of the ***** Mayor of Jonesboro! lol)

    -- Posted by closefriendofgod on Sat, May 7, 2016, at 11:12 PM
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