Thursday, February 25, 2010

A Penny for your thoughts...

The US Mint has changed the design on the reverse of the 2010 Lincoln cent, the new coin having entered circulation on Feb 11, 2010.

Not all that of an unusual occurance and it is not the design of the new cent that I take exception to but the US Mints own description of that design:

"The 13 vertical stripes of the shield represent the states joined in one compact union to support the federal government"

US Mint Press Release

Seems to me that they got this one backasswards in a big way, is not the constitutional purpose and existence of the federal government to protect and serve the states? Did not the states form the federal government to establish justice, domestic tranquility, common defence, general welfare, blessings of liberty...and so on and so forth?

The official description approved by the 1782 congress is a simple:

Paleways of thirteen pieces Argent and Gules: A Chief, Azure.

However the designer Charles Thomson commented on the symbolism of the design and it is considered the only 'official' explanation offered about the meaning of the Union Shield that appears on the Great Seal.

"The shield is composed of thirteen stripes that represent the several states joined into one solid compact, supporting the chief which unites the whole and represents Congress. The stripes are kept closely united by the chief and the chief depends upon that union and the strength resulting from it.

A far cry from "the states joined in one compact union to support the federal government".

Well those are my thoughts...yours?



Snarky Basterd said...

I'm just surprised Obama's face isn't on it.

TKZ said...

That is backwards. History be damned.

Silverfiddle said...

The Knowledge Czar and Finntann have it right: This is bass ackwards.

The states formed the federal government and charged it with specific (enumerated) powers.

Excellent post, Finntann!

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