In the hundred-degree heat of Thursday afternoon, pastor Angelo Frazier and members of Bakersfield public safety services sealed the deal on one of the most red-hot debates that has passed through local government this year.

In the parking lot between a southwest Bakersfield police and fire substation, Frazier plastered the first “In God We Trust” decal onto a police car, followed shortly afterward by Bakersfield City Councilwoman Jacquie Sullivan, who put the decal on a fire truck.

Pointing out the small group of supporters who had come out to celebrate the event during a ceremony, Sullivan basked in the occasion that she had helped bring about.

“We have people that love God and love country and know how important this type of thing is to the long-term success of our country,” she said.

The decal, a postcard-sized American flag with the nation’s motto underneath, will be set onto police and fire vehicles, in a move that advocates say will encourage patriotism throughout the city, indicate support for public safety officers and remind residents of the “guiding principle” of the nation.

“I consider myself a yeasayer, not a naysayer,” Frazier said at the event, referencing the other entities across Kern County that have approved their own version of the stickers. “Yea Shafter (City Council) for approving this. Yea Delano City Council for approving this. Yea Kern County Sheriff Donny Youngblood for giving the OK for this. Yea for our national motto.”

The Bakersfield City Council approved adding the nation’s motto to police and fire vehicles in a 4-2 vote in June following a request by Frazier.

The vote generated much controversy, with those opposed to the decals saying that placing “In God We Trust” on city vehicles would violate the separation of church and state as well as force officers and firefighters that do not believe in God to display the symbols.

Delano was the first city in Kern County to add the decals to their police vehicles. The movement soon spread across the county.

Private donations paid for the decals, which were made by Javier Malta of West Coast Grafix.

Malta was on hand Thursday to watch his designs being placed on the vehicles.

“It’s a privilege and honor to serve the community and everybody else,” he said. “They called to ask me to help and I said, ‘I’m in 100 percent.’”

At the event, Frazier and Sullivan expressed their hope that “In God We Trust” would spread across the country.

At the end of the ceremony, Frazier pumped his hands into the air and yelled, “Onward to Sacramento!”

Sam Morgen can be reached at 661-395-7415. Follow him on Twitter: @smorgenTBC.

(21) comments

BobPrange

Meaningful change. Very meaningful. Worth the time and money. Watch the crime rate drop. Conditions downtown are going to be awesome. I feel safer already.

csp

How exactly would this bumper sticker result in a drop in the crime rate???

BobPrange

I was being sarcastic.

Finis

Trust in Hades: God of the underworld.

ears54

@lrlopez74 - I'm sure your family is steeped in traditional Catholicism (yes, profiling). Belief in the Christian God is a major part of what this country is founded on. It is part of our identity, which so many are attempting to dilute these days.

Nevermind

Actually the founding fathers had differing beliefs. Some were Christian, some were Deists, and some were a combination. Yes most Euro derived Americans were Christians, but morality laws often overlap. But there was a NO doubt the majority didn't want an official religion. Personally it doesn't matter to me if they stick the stickers on, just stop debating the issue and go find criminals.

Finis

The bumper stickers don't specify a Christian God. Trust in Hades: God of the underworld.

Nevermind

Okay great, we now know God is on our side. Can we focus on governing now? What is Sullivan going to do do with all her time now? Maybe trade in badges for crucifixes?

ConcernedCatholic

Wheres the Fr. Craig as the Chaplain for the BPD??? Oh wait........... the police are having dinner with him around town.

Tony Tee

E Pluribus Unum: A reminder that out of the many, a few stand out from the crowd to set Good Intention. That’s all it takes. God Bless them all!

REMUDA

'FORGET' the ignorant naysayers . . . ! GOD AND OUR GOVERNMENT . . . !

It's on all money . . . especially the least COIN of these (yours and my 'PENNY TAX'). . . along with 'OLD GLORY'!

Just another LOCAL reminder of OUR Declaration of Independence >>> "NATURE's GOD" . . . & " . . . all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their CREATOR." "That to secure these rights, GOVERNMENTS are instituted among MEN. . . "

https://www.archives.gov/founding-docs/declaration-transcript

Finis

The bumper stickers don't specify a Christian God. Trust in Hades: God of the underworld.


Pancho3

Heck, it's on the money we love so much.

csp

Welcome to theocracy.

KenWitham

What a waste of time and effort.

lrlopez74

Who needs the Taliban when you've got the Christian Fundamentalist Nazis?

Gene Pool Chlorinator

Very tired of your liberal use of "Nazi". I've looked at a number of your prior posts where you use the same ridiculous assertion. Do you even know what that means? You seem to hold more hate toward those that differ from you politically than any real Nazi- guess that makes you special, huh?

Lilyrose

Thank you . Yes.

byebyeCA

It should be mrlopez74

Athanasios

You know what would be nice? Seeing those stickers in my areas. In other words, actually seeing police patrolling, having visibility. The only time I seem to see them is on Truxtun Avenue when they are at the beginning or end of their shift.

Lilyrose

With the shortage of officers, they dink around with some sticker that I imagine would go on their RV.

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