Yes, I am going to belabor this point, because it is a point that deserves to be belabored.
Imagine the social reaction we would see to an attempt by Congress to adopt the motto, "If you are not white, you are not one of us," or even, "A person who has not accepted Jesus as his lord and savior is not a true American."
It would be considered outrageous.
And yet the motto, "If you do not trust in God, you are not one of us," has nearly universal assent, and even gets support from members of the group targeted as "not one of us".
Let's accept this one fact. "We trust in God" implies - and is meant to imply - "If you do not trust in God, then you are not one of us." It is meant to cast out - to exclude - those who do not trust in God.
With respect to the alternative proposals above, I suspect that if the Jesus alternative above were proposed (and there are some who would almost certainly propose it), we would be dependent on the Jews and the Muslims to see to its defeat. Atheists, in spite of their larger numbers, are too politically impotent to make a useful contribution.
We should ask, as a matter of intellectual curiosity if for no other reason, why this is the case.
In doing so, I would like to note that we see a number of similar cases in human history. Why did so few Jews resist the holocaust? How do you get such a large group of people to accept a status of 'slave' and obey masters they could clearly overpower? Why did women, for thousands of years (through the present, in some parts of the word), accept a position of second-class citizen?
I have heard many say, "If I had been a Jew in Nazi Germany, they would not have gotten me without a fight."
Actually, they probably would have.
If you had been a Jew, growing up in that time and having those experiences, it is quite probable that you would have, in fact, walked into the cattle car at the train station, walked into the concentration camp, and walked into the gas chamber. Perhaps you would not have. But, then, some Jews at the time did not do that either.
If you had been a black person captured in Africa and shipped to America, chances are that you would have worked you master's plantation for the rest of your life, or until the Union army had moved through and freed you.
As a black person in Birmingham in 1950 you would have almost certainly walked to the back of the bus. And, as the bus driver moved the sign that marked the line between "white" and "colored" seats to make room for more white passengers, you almost certainly would have given up your seat.
If you had been born a woman in 1700, you would not only have failed to feel burdened by your exclusion from politics, you would have likely protested any attempt to change the status quo.
If you had been born female into a conservative Muslim culture, you would likely not only accept your status as the virtual property of your husband or father, you would be outraged at your daughter if she showed any signs of rebellion.
And now, as an atheist in America, you find yourself unburdened by a nation that declares, not only as one of its principle but as its motto, "Since you do not trust in God, you are not one of us."
Because your lack of trust in God makes you "not one of us", you are virtually excluded from holding any elected office or office of public trust. Your unwillingness to say the Pledge of Allegiance to a nation "under God" is used as a de facto religious test for public office. Your status as atheist is widely equated with being "unpatriotic" or "immoral" to the degree that national polls identify atheists as the group that least shares the respondent's values as an American. Where you are denied custody of your children in custody disputes, which is only one symptom of a culture that equates "atheist" with "immoral" and "unpatriotic."
We have here an act that warrants as much outrage as a declaration that the national's motto be, "We are white people," or "You are not a true American unless you are Christian." Yet, it gets only a fraction of the outrage that it deserves.
Why is that?