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In God We Trust? (2012)

3.8 ·
5

From the author: When I was given a DVD of a protest rally in the small town of King, near where I live, I was shocked by the sight of five thousand people waving Christian Flags and cheering one of the speakers when he said that everyone there should “encourage” those who weren’t Christian in the area to move somewhere else.

My first reaction was anger and I told my wife, Susan, we were going to put our house up for sale the next day and move somewhere more tolerant. But the next morning, I decided that I would do something else first. I took my video camera down to the Veteran’s Memorial in King’s Public Park and started interviewing people.

I learned that the rally had been ignited by a returning Afghanistan Veteran who threatened to sue the town if they didn’t remove the Christian Flag from the public Veteran’s Memorial.

I was surprised that most residents believed that Separation of Church and State is a myth and that the Founders intended this to be an officially Christian Nation. They quoted so many historical facts from a man named David Barton to back up their claims, that I really wondered if what I’d taken for granted might be incorrect.

And thus began a year-and-a-half journey in my spare time to find out the truth and source of the idea of Separation of Church and State, as well as interviews with half a dozen different religious groups in the area about what and why they believed what they do. The story quickly became as much about what we believe about God as what we believe about the Founders of the United States — and how we evaluate truth itself.

This was just me with a camera on my own, so it is definitely not a professionally produced documentary, but I hope some will find it as interesting a subject and as much an education as I did in making it.

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Films For Action is a community-powered, digital library for people who want to change the world.

 

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“Independent media is dangerous because it allows people to speak for themselves. And when you hear someone speaking from their own experience - whether it's a Palestinian child or an Israeli grandmother or an uncle in Afghanistan or a refugee in the Calais refugee camp - it changes you. It breaks the sound barrier. It challenges the stereotypes and the caricatures that fuel the hate groups. You may not agree with what you hear - I mean, how often do we even agree with our family members? - but you begin to understand where they're coming from. That understanding is the beginning of peace. I really do think that the media can be the greatest force for peace on Earth. Instead, all too often, it is wielded as a weapon of war. We have to take the media back.” - Amy Goodman, Place to B at COP21