I have always ranked state Rep. Woody Burton right up there with Will Shriner and Red Skelton among Hoosier humorists. But the reliable Greenwood Republican's latest squirt of the seltzer bottle bids fair to make the whole state a laughingstock.
With a half-million of Woody's "In God We Trust" license plates being planned for by a Bureau of Motor Vehicles eager to quiet the religious right and distract its customers, our image as rustic sheep who can't keep religion personal and government practical will be reinforced from sea to shining sea.
This isn't about faith. It's about power and pandering. If Burton and his legislative congregation trust in God so much, why don't they heed his commandment to love their neighbors and quit trying to break up families just because the kids are adopted and the parents are gay?
Many are the religious Hoosiers who will hate, not their neighbors, but this state-sanctioned hypocrisy. Couldn't the folks in charge push the cynicism just a notch further and assess a fee? Heaven knows there are plenty of temporal needs going unmet. Right?
I can't wait until the BMV is faced with a decision over a group's desire for a special license plate which reads "In Satan We Trust", or "In Allah We Trust" or whatever else someone can conjure up. The ICLU's Ken Falk hinted at this when he said, "I guess a good question is whether the state is going to be willing to support people who want to proclaim a counter message," Falk said.
Anyone notice how many rings and gold bracelets Woody wears. Who's he trying to be? Liberace? Where I grew up Woody, real men don't wear a bunch of rings and bracelets. Them are for girls. But we know Woody's true passion is for women (note the plural) so we shouldn't be confused by this expression.