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Should '...under God..." be officially removed from the National Pledge of Allegiance?

Updated on November 18, 2011
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Here are the facts, like them or not-

1) It is illegal...pure and simple: The original Pledge never had the phrase "Under God". The Pledge of Allegiance was is written into US law, therefore, the added words "Under God" clearly violate the US Constitution.

The United States Pledge of Allegiance was originally written by Francis Bellamy, a Baptist minister, in August 1892. He must have been a forward thinking fellow, and conscious of the constitution, because he avoided and did not add any phrases with religious context.

On June 22, 1942, The Pledge of Allegiance was recognized and indoctrinated into US law by congress when it was formally included in the U.S. Flag Code.

By 1954 (at the height of McCarthyism and the Cold War) the phrase "Under God" was first added to the pledge by Congress. This is when the intent of the pledge first deviated. It was a trying time for the soul of America, with war and fears of impending doom. Not unlike modern times, with Sept 11, 2001 likewise a similarly stressful time, but these are even more reasons to be careful of following the Constitution.

The First Amendment guarantees free speech as well as freedom of religion, it clearly states: "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion..."

By officially and legally recognizing God in the Pledge, we have officially created a law respecting an establishment of religion. This is illegal!

Although it may seem offensive, and a small detail, it is in everyone's best interests, both Christian and non-Christian, that all US laws rigorously abide by the US Constitution. Our future depends on it.

It is of utmost importance that our US government remain ostensibly neutral with regard to God and religion. The phrase 'under God' should simply be omitted -- which would keep Government and Religion separate. Both government and religion our very important to our culture here in the US, and therefore elicits very strong feelings and emotional debates. For this reason, it makes sense to keep them separate so that people of all faiths or no faiths can successfully live in harmony within the United States of America. We must hold ourselves to higher standards, and practice what we have enacted.

And lastly, what if the tables were turned? What if scientists started placing formulas and theories [against the law no less] of gravity and physics, study's of neuroscience to explain the origin of hallucinations etc., into the sidebar of the Bible, as logical explanations of the mystifying images presented in the stories of Jesus?? Think about the outcry from religious people globally that would take place then!

Again, this is a sensitive issue for many, and there will of course be differences of opinion. But unless we have a universal amendment to the Constitution created, or another Article in the Bill of Rights to say otherwise, there should be no question as to what is right. That being said, I'm not without a soul [if you can trust me], I honestly value those whom think religion is for them, [albeit hopefully, a non-mass organized one]. The fact that a religious phrase is removed from a legally endorsed pledge should not be considered some form of an attack on religion by U.S. lawmakers.

Should the phrase be legally removed, the Pledge restored to its original intent?

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Tell me what your thoughts are below! Let's get some good dialog going!

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    • mobias profile imageAUTHOR

      mobias 

      6 years ago from Forest Grove, OR

      Kaice, like anything in law, or principle, it isn't a question of whether it causes an uproar to uphold a law, or to bother people to uphold a legal principle, or how helpful it is to the common person outside those that care...That's missing the point. The point is that it isn't supposed to be, and is a significant symbolic thorn in the side or our [supposed to be] non-religion affiliated government. It's about principle. Not picking and choosing which laws or policy's to uphold, over another. I agree there are much more important things to worry about right now. But as long as these religious phrases exist in our government, the less credit is held to its hypocritical principles. Standing up for what the original forefathers laid down is important to some people. Thanks for commenting!

    • profile image

      Kaice Davis 

      6 years ago

      Would it not, at this point in the argument, cause more uproar by removing the phrase "Under God" than it would by just leaving it in? I mean obviously no one in Government is taking it into mcuh consideration. It isn't even an issue to many people in Gov (At least that is how it appears). Why do you believe it would be more helpful to take it out than to just leave it where it is?

    • mobias profile imageAUTHOR

      mobias 

      6 years ago from Forest Grove, OR

      Perhaps you are correct..in the the case of it being imposed by FEDERAL law, while it is perfectly legal for the States to create these policy's.

    • danielthorne profile image

      danielthorne 

      6 years ago

      Health care reform is illegal so we should get rid of that too!

    • mobias profile imageAUTHOR

      mobias 

      6 years ago from Forest Grove, OR

      Hi James, thanks for the comments.

      I would respond [playing devils advocate a little] with, good point! Why stop there?! The examples you provide are interacting with grown adults,(not children)-hopefully able to decide for themselves whether they wish to have religious phrases bestowed on them. In the case of the presidential swearing in, he is not legally required to use the phrase ‘So Help Me God’, and further, he can affirm the oath instead of swear by it. In contrast, the first Congress explicitly prescribed the phrase "So help me God" in oaths under the Judiciary Act of 1789 for all U.S. judges and officers other than the President. Although the phrase is mandatory in these oaths, the said Act also allows for the option that the phrase be omitted by the officer, in which case it would be called an affirmation instead of an oath.

      There is also an entire subject relating to how we use and accept the 'concept' of 'a' god (lower case g) when used in civic buildings, and phrases-from their mostly Greco-Roman origins.

      There is much history and background to the 3 main inferences to ‘God’ in the Declaration [which itself is not really our country’s founding document regarding our laws and policy’s, merely the Declaration we were to not be under England’s control].

      Most references were added, with opposition from Jefferson and others, by Congress! Further, the more establishing Constitution made clear the separation of church and state that was to be upheld, despite and perhaps contradictory to the civic buildings etchings, currency and established ‘popular’ phrases of the times. When it boils down to it, it’s controversial, and therefore, no one really wants to be the bad guy and ruin it for the approximately 65% of the countries Christian population. It is, at the very least, ironic and even hypocritical.

      To answer your final question, I would say: The spirit of truth, legality, and universal acceptance of the multitude of different religions allowed to practice in our country! It’s not a proclamation to ‘banish’ God from the public square, but instead to keep our civic buildings, representative of the Constitution for which they uphold, separate from the references to God/gods whatever. It would be NO different, if our local courthouse had references to the goddess mother, Allah, or Jewish prayer written over the entrances, to accept these as well! Yeah right!

    • James A Watkins profile image

      James A Watkins 

      6 years ago from Chicago

      Why stop there? What about "So help me God" when the president takes office with his hand on a Bible? What about the references to God inscribed all over our federal buildings and monuments? How about placing our hand on a Bible when we testify in federal court and say we "will tell the truth and nothing but the truth, so help me God?" What about "In God We Trust" on all of our money, printed by the federal government? What about the four references to God in our Declaration of Independence?

      Perhaps a better question might be: What spirit of this age wants to banish God from the public square?

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