SHAFTER, Calif. — Dozens of people from all over Kern County filled Shafter's City Council Chamber on Tuesday evening. With open ears, they listened to Pastor Justin Medlock propose decal stickers with the motto 'In God We Trust' to its police cars.
“We ask so much of our police officers, we really do," said Medlock. "We ask them to be social workers, sometimes pastors themselves. We ask them to council us and to protect us. So I would like to hope that this decal sticker would be a sign and reflection of our gratitude as well as a reminder to our police force that we pray for them”
This potential move comes after Delano and Bakersfield have considered the addition. In April, Delano adopted adding those same decal stickers to their police cars. However, many people consider this an infringement on their first amendment separation between church and state, while some say the motto leaves others out.
“It’s very exclusionary," said Shafter resident Estevan Ramirez. "That’s what I discovered. Especially, if you’re not a Christian and frankly I’m tired of it. I’m tired of being told ‘don’t look, or put your head down, or go somewhere else, and so that’s why I'm here. I'm here for the people who maybe don’t have time in their day or maybe afraid to speak up, so I’m here today to represent them.”
Shafter's City Council says they should make a decision regarding the stickers in its next meeting on June 18 and Pastor Medlock says he's ready once that decision is made.
“It’s all paid for. It’s going to cost nothing from the city," said Medlock. "The company that provides the stickers, they want to do it themselves and provide that cost. So, many people are involved in this and they just really want it to happen and we’re just really excited and hopefully the city council makes the right decision.”
The Bakersfield City Council is also scheduled to vote on adding 'In God We Trust' decals to their police vehicles during its meeting on Wednesday evening at 5:15 p.m.