Of God and Country

With the recent ruling that the Pledge of Allegiance is unconstitutional there has been a lot of public outcry about different topics.

First, Christians are screaming because they think that God should be allowed in there. In a somewhat notable fashion though you don’t hear them screaming about how the pledge should contain the phrase, “One nation under Allah.” To be fair to all religions (something that our country is proud of and noted for) the pledge should really read much longer as it would have to contain an entry for every deity recognized by every person in the USA, plus an entry for those that don’t believe in a god. Or the section that speaks of “God” should be removed according to the laws that we as a nation have.

There are other people that say that it should stay the same, because that is the way that it has always been. Well there are two bad aspects of that argument. One is that if something is incorrect, it shouldn’t matter how long it has been that way. It should be corrected as soon as it is noted. The second problem is that is not the way that is “has always been.” The pledge was created in 1896. At that time there were no references to God in it. It wasn’t until 1954 that congress added “under God” to it. This was done at the urging of the Knights of Columbus. Therefore the argument that it is a vital piece of American history is kinda smacked down. First and foremost if there are people alive that are 109 years old then they are older than the Pledge of Allegiance in any form. Someone who is only 48 is older than the current version which contains the word “God”. Another problem is that the phrase was added after a campaign by a religious group. That seems to be somewhat out of line with US laws.

Truthfully, I think that their shouldn’t be any mention of God or any deity in public schools or government practices. This country was created by people seeking to escape religious persecution and therefore when the constitution was created it was created so that it would allow for a “separation of church and state.” This was done so that everyone one would have the freedom to do what they would like as far as religions. I am not saying that people shouldn’t be allowed to pray in school, but instead there shouldn’t be a set time or ritual for it. If people want to pray that is fine, but to truly honor the ideas that this country was founded upon schools shouldn’t force, or actively be a part of that. A lot of people are also using the cry that the word “God” is in the pledge that the president gives when he is inaugurated. The problem with that is that in the actual pledge as laid down by our government “God” is not in it. The first president (and I believe everyone after him) added the word “God” to it. Truly, the people that wrote the Constitution went well out of their way to make sure that religion has nothing to do with our country as a government.

Then this morning when the news was talking about this ruling they went out on the street and were asking people what they thought about it. One lady said something that struck me like a punch to the stomach. She said, “This is America and that is our pledge of allegiance. If you don’t like it then get out.” I was amazed. Here was the perfect example of why America was created and it was being said by someone who obviously thought she was a patriot to our country and the ideas that it was founded on. Sadly, that isn’t the correct way to feel about it. People should have the rights to state what they think and bring things up for question. That is what this man has done. He brought the Pledge of Allegiance up for question against Constitutional law and the courts (the ones charged with interpreting the law) found that he was correct in that the Pledge violated our laws. This is all perfectly within the design of our country. What is not in the design of our country and is what this lady was implying should be done, is expelling people from the US for their beliefs or religious ideas. Under the disguise of Patriotism she was performing one of the acts that made people start our country in the first place, religious oppression. This is because she is attempting to make this person worship (in a small way yes but worship none the less) a deity to which he does not subscribe to.

There is a separation between being a Christian (or any other religion) and being an American. This is proof by the fact that you can be either without being the other, but not everyone realizes that. That is most likely due to the fact that Christianity is the dominate religion in the United States. Our president prides himself on the fact that he is a devote Christian. Not surprising then that he was one of the first to stand up and state that this was a bad ruling. This shows that he to doesn’t realize that there should be a difference between being a Christian and an American and that he doesn’t truly understand the laws that our country is founded upon.

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