Wednesday, September 14, 2005

Obligatory Pledge of Allegiance Post

I guess that as a blogger I'm required to comment on today's ruling that the term "under God" as used in the Pledge of Allegiance is unconstitutional. So here's my comment:

I don't care.

And here's why. Think back to your youth. It's 8:00 AM. Your 3rd grade teacher Mrs. Witherspoon tells the class to stand, place a hand over their hearts and recite the pledge, which sounds something like this:

"Ipledglegiancetotheflag (breath) oftheunitedstatesofamerica (breath) andtotherepublicforwhichitstands (breath) onenationundergod (breath) indivisible (or somesuch unintelligible mutter - breath) withlibertyandjusticeforall (breath-shuffle-shuffle)."

And so all the brouhaha on both sides will be spent on something to which no reasonable child is really paying the least bit of attention.

And by the time I was old enough to really care to think about the meaning of the words in the pledge, my conception of religion was well formed beyond the strength of any such invocation to influence.

So, as with the periodic anti-flag burning amendment proposals, a great deal of sound and fury will be spent, as usual, signifying nothing.

May I suggest that the energy spent on either side of this issue might be much better spent addressing the actual quality of children's education, their health, the environment they live in, or the debt with which they're being saddled.


T.L. Stanley said...

I agree with you about reciting the pledge in school may not be of any value. However, I think athesim, agnosticism, and secularism are making a big mistake by continually attacking everything that is Christian.

Being an extremely liberal Christian and Centrist, I try to be understanding. But, it is hard to understand the need to purge all Christian symbols from American society. I could list numerous anti-Christian attacks over the last 10 years. A few are: Banning prayers at graduations, Banning Christmas programs, Banning Bibles from public schools, and Banning the Boy Scouts.

Now to the quality of education that children are receiving in school. Even though I value a college education, we need more job training programs at the high school level. It seems odd to me that we do not have more vocational / professional training today.

Gosh,we need more mechanics, machinists, appliance repair specialists, plumbers, electricians, chefs, cooks, bakers, bookkeepers, computer techs, and heavy duty truck drivers.

This may seem like an old fashioned idea, especially since I spent a large portion of my life in undergraduate, graduate, and post graduate school. But, I am a realist. And, America needs a diverse mix of skills to advance our society.

Good golly, I got worked up about this. Take care.

Citizen Kang said...

As an agnostic I have to agree that we on the left could do a better job picking our battles. I'm much more concerned with religion being confused with science than I am with "under God" in the Pledge, or the inclusion of a creche in a public Christmas display.

I do also feel that much of the public hand-wringing over such cases is mere demagoguery on the part of the right-wing Chrisitian leadership. Given the overwhelming predominance of Christian symbolism and belief in this country, I have to wonder whose faith is so weak that removing the cross from LA's seal, for example, would somehow diminish their belief in God?

T.L. Stanley said...

Citizen Kang, you made some good points. I have another observation about Christianity in our society. In Europe, Christianity is weak and radical Islam is growing quickly.

From my reading of international news, European Islam, Middle East Islam, and world-wide Islam in general is not accommodating when it comes to allowing other religions, especially Christianity, to exist along side Islam.

As Islam grows in America and Europe, will a strong Christian community, which is relatively tolerant, be needed to counteract the intolerace of Islam?

Take care.