“In God we trust” vs. “In Reason we trust.”

Last Friday I decided to poll my students in my World History class. I was curious about how they felt about the words “In God We Trust” on our coins and currency. I handed out the survey question without any front-loading discussions. In other words, I did not prepare the students by engaging them in discussions pertaining to the issue ( i.e., separation of church and state, the Age of Reason, etc.). To prevent students from being influenced by their peers, and to ensure that they answered the question privately and in silence, I handed out the question (see below) during a test they were taking on the Roman Empire.

The results were surprising. Out of 27 students, only seven did not support the change, two did not care, and 18 supported it. Wow… didn’t see that coming! Only 25 percent were against the change – I thought it would be higher. Conclusions?

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