Who should we put on the $50 bill?

I can’t regard the effort to put Reagan on the $50 as really a serious paen – it smacks of partisanship, like all those efforts to put monuments to him in each of the states, and on Mount Rushmore. If this comes to serious debate, it will be a polarizing issue, and raise lots of bad feelings on both sides.
So who should we put on the $50? assuming, of course, we want to change it from Grant (a much maligned man, most historians agree, who wasn’t the hopeless drunk he’s often portrayed as).

John Adams? Aside from the recent $1 coin, I don’t think he’s ever been on any US money. He took lots of flak as president (a lot of it from his veep, Jefferson), but he ended up the star of the musical 1776, a David McCulloch bestseller, and an HBO mini-series. He’s gotta be riding high in popularity now.

Tom Paine – everyone knows his pamphlet Common Sense was a major propaganda boost for the Revolution, but the man didn’t get no respect. Even so, his works are still in print, and easier to find than the writings of most of the leaders of the Revolution. Of course, he was a noted atheist and rabble-rouser. He might cause some pretty bad feelings in parts of the country.

William Henry Harrison – aside from his dollar coin, I don’t think he made the currncy list. He was a Whig, so nobody’s going to be upset by his being nominated. True, he had the shortest presidency, and it was probably his own fault, but he had a long career as a politician and a soldier. If nothing else, he’d be interesting. People would collect the bill, and that would be good for our economy.

Who else? Why not scientists, engineers, military leaders who didn’t get to be president, diplomats, etc. We’ve had Susan B. Anthony and Sacagawea, but surely there are other women we could choose. Or black citizens like Frederick Douglas. Or maybe we could put Grover Cleveland on a bill twice, just because.

IMO, no one. We should reverse the trend of deifying past Presidents or “glorious leaders”, and currency should have something which reflects more what makes America…America. Pick any wildlife scene, historical scene, national monument, etc.

Corporate logos? How about a Domino’s Pizza $50?

I fall far from the Reagan worshipers on the political spectrum, however, I have no problem putting him on the fifty.

That way if his cultists want to line their underwear with $50 bills so they can remain in a constant state of Ronniecstasy more power to them (keeps them off the streets).

Honestly, when was the last time you held a $50 in your hand?

I’m with Una although the US is definitely not alone in having revered national figures on their currency (I can’t think of a country that doesn’t, actually).

But, really, what’s wrong with Grant?

If Reagan wants a bill, why not make a new one, the $3 bill. :wink:

God forbid we put Old Pruneface on the fifty. I think a complete overhaul is needed. We should stick with faces because they’re harder to counterfeit than say a mountain goat or an eagle, the human eye is better able to distinguish distortions in a face than anything else.

I say dump Jackson from the twenty, give it to MLK.

If you must take Grant off the fifty (I think he still deserves the spot), then let’s piss off the red states and put Sherman on it.

We should insist on George W. Bush, and then compromise on Reagan. That’ll show 'em!

I think we don’t do enough for inventors. I’d like to see a Thomas Edison coin, an Edwin Land coin, George Westinghouse, Cyrus McCormick, Eli Whitney, Bill Shockley, Igor Sikorsky, and of course Al Gore for his dual achievements of inventing global warming and the Internet.


Ron Reagan Jr. would be more appropriate for the $3, but he isn’t eligible (dead) yet. Yes, I know he’s married, but he does give off that gay aura.

Well said. I don’t know if this is happening more than it use to, but I’m tired of the constant tributes to political functionaries.

I don’t know, sounds too Canadian.

Seems like there’s a Kennedy-something pretty much everywhere. And, wasn’t he also on the 50 cent piece? Maybe this trend started in the early sixties.

It used to be that Lady Liberty graced a lot of coins, we could go back to that.

Fuck John Adams right in the neck! Were he alive today, half of the SDMB would be in jail. Authoritarian prick.

I’m OK with Grant, but if a change must be made, I’d go with Teddy Roosevelt.

I don’t have a problem with Grant. If it must be changed, though, it ought to be someone less polarizing than Reagan. I’d be ok with TR (is he not already on any currency?).

What about the $2? You hardly ever see those. You could photoshop Reagan shaking hands with FDR and put it on there, and everyone’s (un)happy.

I love the idea of putting FDR and Reagan on opposite sides of the dime, forcing endless arguments between liberals and conservatives about which said is heads and which side is tails.

I was thinking of “crookeder than a $3 bill” (which prompted jokes about putting former PM Brian Mulroney (and Reagan’s biggest ass-kisser) on a (equally-fictiious) Canadian $3).

But I am aware of the “gayer than a $3 bill” phrase too; a lot can be said about Ronnie, both positive and negative, but I don’t think anyone has said he has homosexual tendencies, nor was I trying to insinuate he has any vibe at all.

If it’s the Lady Liberty with one boob hanging out, this Pubbie can get behind that!

Too French.

No change needed, IMNSHO. Leave Grant where he is.

Reagan should be on US promissory notes, not any actual cold, hard cash.

If you need to get Grant off (which you don’t really), why not put Norman Borlaug on there. He’s done more good than any 10 presidents combined, with a few select exceptions.