Last month, the Brevard County Sheriff’s Office in Florida refurbished their patrol cars and made the decision to include patriotic designs in the new livery. The American Flag and the national motto, “In God We Trust” now feature prominently in the newly painted vehicles.

Unfortunately, the inclusion of the national motto received negative reactions from atheists. Despite the protests, Sheriff Wayne Ivey is refusing to remove the phrase from the vehicles.

According to Fox News, an atheist group called Freedom From Religion Foundation (FFRF) has deemed the phrase to be “inappropriate and exclusionary.” Furthermore, a statement issued by the group states that the inclusion of such a phrase is “frightening and politically dubious.”

Regardless of how religious the phrase “In God We Trust” may seem, it found its way into the design due to the fact that it is the national motto of the United States of America. The phrase has been printed on US dollars as far back as 1864.

“To us there is no greater honor than to live in the greatest country in the world and serve as a law enforcement officer in Brevard County where our citizens love us, trust us and protect us just as much as we love, trust and protect them,” said the Brevard County Sheriff’s Office.

While the motto was met by protests from the atheist group, members of the community have approved its inclusion into the new paint job. The idea to add the phrase actually came from a veteran.

Public Information Officer, Tod Goodyear, said that Sheriff Ivey will not budge “Once he makes his mind up, he’s not going to change it. He’s not going to take something off the vehicles because a group disapproves of it. The comments our office received were in favor of keeping the motto. He’s not going to alter his beliefs,” he said.

“If you’re a police officer putting your life on the line every single day in Brevard County, would you rather put your trust in God or in one of those so-called free-thinkers or atheists? I think the Sheriff’s is going with God,” he added.