Virginia Coin: Who Should Get Face Time? 

For the third year running, arch-conservative Robert Marshall, a Republican delegate from Prince William County, wants Virginia to start printing its own money.

The reason should be obvious to anyone who watches Fox News. The U.S. financial system, especially under President Barack Obama, as the rationale goes, is in great jeopardy of collapsing. The greenback could go the way of the Confederate dollar almost overnight. And so Virginia should be prepared by issuing its own money.

Other than figuring out how to back the money financially, a huge question is who should be on the paper bills and coins. Naturally there are the run-of-the-mill, historic types — Patrick Henry and James Madison, for example — but why not make our bills and coins more contemporary?

Washington Post blogger Tom Jackman recommends the Dave Matthews Band, country legend Patsy Cline, author Tom Wolfe, NBA legend Moses Malone and the late tennis great Arthur Ashe, among others.

We'd like to get the ball rolling on a few others.

Penny: Ukrop's was never the place were you could save many cents, but Richmond's love for the iconic grocery chain sure added up to a lot of them. Here's remembering founder Joe Ukrop, whose supermarkets sold to Ahold USA in 2009 for about $140 million.

Nickel: For a coin that's smooth around the edges, you gotta give it to slick music producer, former soul singer and politico August Moon. When you get the nickel spinning, you'll be thinking of Mr. Wiggles.

Dime: He dropped a few on a six-bedroom brick house in the Fan, staying put in Richmond to keep coaching the Virginia Commonwealth University men's basketball team. But we'll hold off minting Shaka Smart's visage till we see what the next Final Four brings.

Quarter: The largest coin could go to the "Big Bad John" of sausage making and country entertaining, Jimmy Dean. But maybe it's better claimed by a man who made a big impact with an oversized presence. Washington gets dumped for former governor and mayor L. Douglas Wilder. His face, naturally, would appear on both sides of the coin.

Hey, this may not be as wacky as it sounds. Some 13 states considered accepting gold or silver as currency last year.


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