Belief Beat

Belief Beat

Happy Flag Day, Still ‘Under God’

Today is America’s Flag Day, part of the presidentially proclaimed Flag Week.

I wasn’t sure whether to post about this. For starters, isn’t every day basically Flag Day – especially at a time of war and when a big sporting event, like the World Cup soccer tournament, is going on? Maybe it depends on what part of the country and/or world you live in?

But, there are some faith-related discussions going on that I found interesting, regarding church-state separation, the recently upheld “under God” addition to the Pledge of Allegiance, and how religious affiliation factors into ethnic and national identity, patriotism and politics in general. A few examples:


Check back for updates, and share your thoughts in the Comments section below.


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posted June 14, 2010 at 3:46 pm

The clause “under God” was inserted into the pledge around 1954. It was wrong then, it is wrong now, and anyone who takes religion and the U.S. Constitution seriously should be at the forefront of the effort to get the clause removed.
The Court’s odd decision was that the clause could stand because it wasn’t really a religious message. Well, that’s how they got around the establishment clause of the First Amendment–but if those words do not convey a religious sentiment, then they are a violation of the Third Commandment, against taking the name of God in a cheap and worthless manner.
So if the Court’s ruling is correct because the clause is NOT a statement of religious belief, then religious people should object to it as a violation of the Third Commandment. And if the ruling is incorrect because the clause IS a statement of belief, then people concerned about Constitutional integrity should object to it as a violation of the establishment clause of the First Amendment.
It seems to me that the desire to keep the clause in the pledge reveals more interest in making a public show of piety and patriotism than in upholding the Constitution and the Commandments.

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posted June 14, 2010 at 4:46 pm

I agree with what you stated on this discussion. Of the religions in the world, God, is a title or office that a supreme being holds, if you will, to Christians, God, is the name of their ‘God’. I understand the reason why it was done in the 50’s, so they, our country, could show itself as a ‘god’ fearing nation rather than some ‘godless’ communist country. At that time, people saw it as the same thing god and Christianity. Today, our make up is very different and for those Conservative Christians who feel threatened by the removal of “under God” it is of great importance, after all, in their minds, we are a “Christian” nation although this is incorrect. By removing the “under god” I don’t see it as an attempt to persecute Christians as more of a
‘leveling the playing field’ for all people of all religions in this country. Besides, I’d rather see it removed and go back to the pre 1950’s pledge. It’s because of it, I refuse to say the Pledge of Allegiance. Some will see it as silly and I don’t really care but as being an active and participating Wiccan, I will only pledge to my Gods, not someone elses god. Those words make the whole pledge very different, in my mind from a religious stand point.

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Grumpy Old Person

posted June 14, 2010 at 4:53 pm

“One nation under God” is “not a statement of religious belief”???
I agree with the above 2 posters – it should be removed. Just try taking it out though, and you’ll soon see just HOW ‘religious’ it is. There’d be howls of protests – ‘You’re taking away my (ahem) religious freedoms’, etc.
What fools are on that Supreme Court anyway? Oh yeah, I remember, the very same ones that gave corporations all the rights of persons.
America has fallen so far.

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Rob the Rev

posted June 14, 2010 at 9:24 pm

I agree with the above posters as well. “…under God…” should be removed from the pledge for it violates separation of church and state. We are a secular nation not a theocratic one.
My pledge of allegiance is: “I pledge allegiance to the CONSTITUTION of the United States of America and to the Republic which it created; one nation under the FOUNDING FATHERS with liberty and justice for all human persons (regardless of race, gender, creed, ethnicity, political party, and sexual orientation).”

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posted June 15, 2010 at 8:49 pm

Well, I too agree…”under God” should most certainly be removed from the Pledge. It should have never been inserted, but given the times….I suppose it made sense to someone!
When I do say the Pledge, I just leave it out.

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