Pledge of Allegiance ruled unconstitutional

Discussion in 'Archive: The Senate Floor' started by Chris2, Jun 26, 2002.

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  1. Darth_SnowDog Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 10, 2001
    star 4
    Mister_Bunny: And to think we're spending our time fighting religious extremism in Afghanistan... imagine that.

    Both Dubya and Osama pander to religious zealotry to maintain power, and they've both become wealthy off petroleum.

    What a tangled web we weave...

    Article VI, US Constitution:

    All Debts contracted and Engagements entered into, before the Adoption of this Constitution, shall be as valid against the United States under this Constitution, as under the Confederation.

    This Constitution, and the Laws of the United States which shall be made in Pursuance thereof; and all Treaties made, or which shall be made, under the Authority of the United States, shall be the supreme Law of the Land; and the Judges in every State shall be bound thereby, any Thing in the Constitution or Laws of any State to the Contrary notwithstanding.

    The Senators and Representatives before mentioned, and the Members of the several State Legislatures, and all executive and judicial Officers, both of the United States and of the several States, shall be bound by Oath or Affirmation, to support this Constitution; but no religious Test shall ever be required as a Qualification to any Office or public Trust under the United States
  2. Darth_Overlord Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 28, 2001
    star 4
    "Apart from the mention of the phrase 'the United States of America,' it could be the pledge of any republic. In fact, I could hear little Muscovites repeat a similar pledge to their hammer-and-sickle flag in Moscow."

    This is EXACTLY why something needs to be added that declares the fact that the government does not grant rights-- it only protects them. It doesn't have to have any religious connotations, but the pledge pre-1954 wasn't all that different than nationalistic propaganda used by the likes of Hitler, Stalin, Mao, etc.
  3. Cheveyo Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 29, 2001
    star 5
    I don't mean to sound like a fascist/communist/anti-Christian/American-hating/traitorous malcontent, but...

    ...Why do we NEED a Pledge of Allegiance in this era... and why do our kids have to say it EVERY morning?! Is some top government official afraid that our children, without pledging themselves every day, will grow up to be Canadians or something?!

    "Oh my gosh, Kenny's not reciting the pledge... he must not be loyal!" C'mon people, if it's not a mandatory recital, as everyone on this board agrees to, then why do instructors advise children to stand and recite it at all? The flag is in every school room. Kids are taught what it stands for.

    What's the point? What's the purpose?? I'm still an American, and I haven't recited the POA in 12 years! Ohhh no! Wait... I married a Canadian! Aww bummer, my allegiance must have worn off! I better go recite it a few times and correct this most heinous wrong!

  4. Cheveyo Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 29, 2001
    star 5
    ummm, sorry about the above post. My sarcasm got the best of me. I'm just tired of remedial issues like this. The only purpose this (this = this debate, this topic, this Pledge of Allegiance) serves is to place the Christian entity within the United States on a higher moral ground; something they continue to seek, yet always fall short of.

    One nation under God. That's what this is all about, right? Is it truly one nation under God? You ask children to pledge their lives, their hearts, to a falsehood. This is not One nation under god for all. Remember those last two words... they come up at the end of the Pledge.

    That's the driving point of this issue. "For all" means for everyone residing as a citizen within this nation's borders. We all know not everyone believes in a monotheist religion. By saying this in a pledge to that nation, the government (We the people...) is stripping those communities of their right to freely choose their own religion without bias (key words). The government is OPENLY endorsing one religion, despite everything this country fought for to gain its freedom.

    To continue this antithetic diatribe is a waste of precious resources, i.e. brainpower.


    EDIT: syntax corrections
  5. Darth_SnowDog Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 10, 2001
    star 4
    Ohhh no! Wait... I married a Canadian!

    Hey! I resemble that remark! *looks at BithySith* :p

    Here's a thought... regarding Bush's recent comments on judiciary appointments... We know that every President tries to pander to a constituency and stack the judicial deck in their favor... but what kind of a moron actually comes out and says it?!

    Why not just change your name to Goldfinger, throw on an eyepatch and get a white cat while you're at it, Dubya?

    "Do you expect me to talk?"

    "No, Mr. SnowDog, I expect you to hear my entire plan first!"
  6. Darkside_Spirit Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Sep 9, 2001
    star 3
    Many American politicians have no respect for the third branch of government. They parade themselves as protectors of the constitution, but when the courts enforce it against popular will, they become incensed.
  7. Mister_Bunny Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Apr 5, 2001
    star 3
    I foresee this the next time a Supreme Court seat opens up:

    George W. Bush: Do you call yourself a Christian?

    Candidate #1: No, I'm a Buddhist.

    GWB: The door is that way.

    Candidate #2: No, I am Muslim, I believe...

    GWB: Don't need to finish the sentence, thanks! See ya!

    Candidate #3: Yes, I am a Christian. I am well versed in both the Bible and the Book of Mormon.

    GWB: The what of what? Don't let the door hit you on the butt.

    Candidate #4: I refuse to answer that question.

    GWB: Have fun on the circuit bench you came from.

    Candidate #5: I am Christian.

    GWB: Good. What denomination?

    C #5: Ummm... what denomination are you?

    GWB: Ummmm... lemme see what the pollsters had me put on my election application... hmmm. I don't remember.

    C #5: Well, in that case... I am Episcopalian.

    GWB: OOOoooh. I know that ain't one I'm familiar with. But my dad doesn't like Ep-Episc-o-pil-alien or whatever. Goodbye.

    Candidate #6: I am Christian, and of the same denomination as you.

    GWB: Good, you're hired as a Supreme Court Justice.

    C #6: Thanks. Just give me 3 years to get my law degree and I will take the position.

    GWB: Great!
  8. Cheveyo Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 29, 2001
    star 5
    [face_laugh] [face_laugh] [face_laugh]

    no wait... that's not funny at all! That's quite frightening!
  9. Darkside_Spirit Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Sep 9, 2001
    star 3
    Let's just hope that the Democrats maintain control of the Senate in the November elections. That won't necessarily stop politicisation of, or worse, religious discrimination in, the appointments process (heck, it was a Democrat senator who said: "I hope Judge Goodwin doesn't come before this body for a promotion") but it would act as some restraint on Bush when the Supreme Court seats come up.
  10. TreeCave Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 28, 2001
    star 4
    cheveyo, I liked your sarcasm. Very good point. Reciting a bunch of words you don't even understand (ok, who DIDN'T think it was "invisible") has no effect on your mind. Schoolkids could recite every day, "I bow before the Prince of Darkness, who stands with staves of impaled heads; glory unto he before whom the world shall tremble and death eat chocolate" and it would have exactly the same lack of impact.

    ::::blinking::::: Wait, SnowDog and BithySith are married? Or did I miss something? :)

    DSS, unfortunately I'm pretty disappointed with the Demos. I have never liked either party, but I used to support them just to provide a stumbling block to the alleged "Southern Baptists" who are trying to take over the country via the Repub party. Now I think they're all just hopeless, as the Demos are all pimping themselves to the sudden trend of faux patriotism/religious fervor that has infected the US since 9/11. Imagine their confusion when suddenly that trend wears off and gets replaced by faux open-mindedness and hard drinking! [face_laugh] America.... providing a sort of grim enterntainment to the world every day!

  11. Saint_of_Killers Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Feb 18, 2001
    star 5
    "Wait, SnowDog and BithySith are married?"

    Yes, and they're the perfect couple, as they're both hotties ;)
  12. DARTHPIGFEET Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 24, 2001
    star 4
    I happen to be back in my home town of Orlando, FL for the next few months and I'm staying with the folks while I'm here. Anyway yesterday was the 4th of July, and a neighbor of my parents went around for 2 hrs on the 3rd with their kids and put nice little American flags by each mail box in the neighborhood. That is about 300 homes in all. Well anyway my parents call their house yesterday to thank them and that it was a cool idea. Then the neighbors said they got a real nasty phone call from someone in the neighborhood saying how dare they put an American flag up all over the place and on her property which actually isn't her property since it's a median and county property.

    I wish I had spoken on the phone with that ***** and tell her if you don't like America then get the heck out. That is the kind of idiots we have in this country who live under our protections and freedoms. Sorry but that really ticked me off to know end and I wish I could find where that lady lived. I guess I should find the house where the flag wouldn't be, because all the houses still have them up. It's really a sign of the times to me.

    I would like to add that a GREAT man passed away today and that was Ted Williams who was a class act, and one of the last greats from the golden age of baseball. This man could have been the greatest hitter of all time and have every record in the book, but instead fought in WWII, and Korea as a fighter pilot for 5 years. Now that is true patriotism at it's best. I would like to see these Billionare players we have today who complain about being paid and stuff go and do this. Sorry but like I've stated before I wish I could design a time machine and go back to the 1940's and 50's. I think I would fit much better in those times then in the terrible politically correct times we have today. Sorry but that is the way I feel. May Ted Williams R.I.P.
  13. TreeCave Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 28, 2001
    star 4
    Pig, I have a question for you, and it comes from the fact that you mention "political correctness" in most of your posts. Do you assume all non-Christians are just non-Christians because we think it's "politically correct" or hip or something superficial like that? Or do you recognize that some of us have deeply held beliefs - as strong as your own, possibly stronger - that conflict with Christianity, and we'd still continue to hold them under any circumstance the world throws at us?

    I hope you don't find this an insulring question - I'm sincerely asking. Some people on both sides of the fence don't see that others' beliefs are as important as theirs. I know some non-Christians assume that all Christians would immediately drop their religion if threatened with so much as a serious inconvenience, or if all their friends dropped it, or whatever. I personally do not. I do tend to think most people go along with the times and don't have strong convictions - but there are no more Christians like that than there are in any other popular group.

    I have never attempted to be politically correct, as I consider it hypocritical. My opinions are my own. I don't know anything about the ACLU or its stance on anything, nor do I care. I don't know what the Clintons are doing, nor do I care. I take everything the press says with a hefty grain of salt. So whatever you get from me, even when it coincides with "political correctness", is my true opinion, influenced by no one.
  14. DARTHPIGFEET Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 24, 2001
    star 4
    I would be happy to answer your question and by no means was my last post or any of my posts directly speaking to you even though you don't share the same opinions as I do.

    I am a Chirstian however not a practicing one who gets up every Sunday and goes to church or preaches the gospel to others. I'm against these extreme Christians just as I'm against extreme liberals. Religion doesn't play a big role in my life.

    If you want to know what I stand for it's Truth, Justice and the American way. Some would call me a flag waving patriot and I would reply to them "darn right and proud of it" some would say I'm one of brainwashed. What I don't like and what gets on my nerves 9 times out of 10 is when people want to be real jerks which is the most watered down thing I can call them here when they want to protest this and protest that when it comes to America. Perfect example would be the lady who called about the American Flag in her yard. Maybe someone should slap her in the face to wake her up and see that she lives and breaths under the protection of that flag and to say that flag doesn't belong in her yard is spitting on every servicemen and woman in this country and around the world. These people are protecting her and her little house from becoming a warzone, or property of a dictatorship. These people truely take for granted the freedoms they have here in America for some reason. I say if you don't like this country then get the heck out and see what it's like from the outside.

    I consider taking out "under God" another example of people trying to change things in this country and I don't like it. There is no wrong being done with it being in our pledge, but people start coming out of the woodwork over the past few years wanting this to be changed because it's offensive this or offensive that. Religion isn't my reasoning on this issue it's the principle to change something that has been around for 48 years and hasn't hurt anyone but some jerk comes along and screams foul when no foul has been committed.

    That is why I look at the older days with such respect and envy. I would rather live back then when you could keep your doors unlocked, know your neighbor, enjoy classic baseball with classic players. Sure society wasn't perfect back then. No society is perfect, but I would much rather live in a time when you didn't have this type of division and anti-American mumbo jumbo that lives in our society today. It makes me sick. So changing "Under God" is anti-American and that is why I will not ever support it being taken out.

    I can't think of anything else to think of right now because I have so much to say but I hope that at least answers your question somewhat that I'm in the middle between the right and left of this society. I want sense and reason and some daggum respect shown to this country by it's own citizens, because without this basic element we will die from the inside rather than the outside. Enough is enough.
  15. gwaernardel Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 5, 2001
    star 4
    Pigfeet, I agree with you on most of your points. I think Americans who hate America should not live here. And I think that there are lots of traditions that we should keep. What is your opinion of the Pledge of Allegiance being changed to include "under God" in the first place. Would you have protested this when Eisenhower was president? Would you have argued that it is unnecessary?
    I also would like to say that this is one of the calmest debates I have seen in the JC anywhere. It's comforting to go from the AOTC thread (where you can get flamed for not wording a sentence right) to this thread, where people for the most part are peacefully arguing their points.
  16. DARTHPIGFEET Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 24, 2001
    star 4
    I'm against the Pledge being changed, because it isn't hurting anyone or oppresing anyone. If I was living back in 1954 I wouldn't have questioned what happened. Now I would be for changing it to "Creator" since it's a more broaded term for a supreme being. I could understand if it was mandatory that you had to stand for the POA and such but you don't, because it's your right not too. How is that violating your rights?

    I think this whole thing is a shame and especially the original reason behind this whole issue being brought up. It was a custody battle gone bad from 1998 and this guy is taking the whole country down by running his mouth. His daughter wants to say the POA and yet he is fighting against her own will to do this. That is messed up.
  17. Master-Jedi-Smith Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    May 26, 2002
    star 4
    Pigfeet,

    Things change. That's life.

    If you were to go back in time to the 40's and 50's, there would be things back then that would "tick" you off as well.

    The reason America is a great place to live is because you can say "Hey, I don't like this about America" and not worry about being persecuted. (unless they live by you. :) )

    You seem to believe in the majority. Just a quick question, would you have gotten all upset back in the 60's when Civil Rights Activists tried to change things in American society? Or even eariler with Women's Rights?

    I'm not trying to compare the two with religious rights, because you have made it very obvious that they are not comparable rights. I am just wondering, do you just not like change, even if it is for the good of the minority in this country?

    Latre! :D
  18. Saint_of_Killers Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Feb 18, 2001
    star 5
    "changing "Under God" is anti-American"

    It was pretty damn "anti-American" to add it in the first place, since it goes totally against the Constitution.
  19. Master-Jedi-Smith Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    May 26, 2002
    star 4
    No, no. You're going to distract Pigfeet! :p

    He can only hate one post at a time.

    Otherwise his head might explode. :D

    Mine first please.

    Latre! :D
  20. DARTHPIGFEET Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 24, 2001
    star 4
    No I would have been for the Civil Rights movement because it's been long overdue. As well as womens rights BECAUSE for the very fact that people were being harmed and treated badly because of there sex and race. That is wrong and that kind of change was long overdue. Now if you ask me was I for the Hippie movement and free love junk I would say "Hell No" That was a bunch of crap and it really changed this country for the worse.

    No I don't like most change but when change is needed in certain instances then I'm for it, because it's the right thing to do.

    As for "under God" being anti-America that is dead wrong since the majority of this country since it's founding has been CHRISTIAN.
  21. Master-Jedi-Smith Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    May 26, 2002
    star 4
    Yeah, but they created alot of far out music man! :p

    Those were very turbulents time in America. It shook up the establishment.

    I'm not saying it was all good, but it wasn't all bad either.

    We shouldn't just sit back and go with the flow all the time. We need to question our government sometimes about the things they do.

    Like, why did they put God in the POA. :D

    Latre! :D
  22. TreeCave Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 28, 2001
    star 4
    Thanks for answering, Pigfeet. I didn't take your earlier post as directed at me in particular - my ego's not quite that big, LOL. I basically just wanted to clarify some of it out loud, because there are others on these boards who DO assume people who disagree with them are only doing it to annoy them, and I'm hoping they'll reaalize what it means to respect someone else's opinion, even when you disagree vehemently.

    To those of you who think those who "hate America" should leave it: just be careful not to confuse people who hate America or criticize it just to be cook with people who criticize the US in hopes of making it a better country for the people who live here. I criticize myself scathingly - it's the only way to make yourself a better person. Likewise, the US came into being because somebody criticized England - the King mainly, not the English people (which they were/had been a part of themselves) and not necessarily English culture. The civil rights movement came about because everyone - not just "minorities", but even white men - were being hurt by the inequality, and someone had the guts to speak up. Criticism is a form of patriotism, and one that comes naturally to me, as I had a very critical mother teaching me critical thinking from the time I was born.

    In regards to your "majority" argument on the Pledge, PigFeet, I still say the idea of "majority rules" is overinflated in this country.... if you think about it, this country was basically founded on two ideals: (1) that non-elites should have a say in government and (2) that if even one person has the rights to "life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness" denied, we're being elitist. These two ideals work in tandem often, but sometimes seem to conflict. We've not always done a good job resolving the conflict, either - blacks weren't considered "people", so denying them rights was okay! Convenient reasoning to suit the economics of slavery - later changed, probably more to suit the economics of the Industrial Revolution than out of any real respect for black human beings, unfortunately.

    I understand where you're coming from, I just disagree. Sometimes the majority is just plain wrong - up until the 1980's, it was legal to rape your wife and/or illegal for her to deny you sex under any circumstances in the majority of states, because this was what the majority wanted. Sometimes the majority has to compromise - about 60% of Americans want abortion totally legal (excepting a few exclusions, like late term) - but the laws don't reflect this exactly, as many states require things the minority 40% want, such as parental consent, disclosure, etc. And sometimes, the majority would get us all killed - as I said earlier, more people have driven under the influence than not, yet our laws don't reflect accommodation for that, as they get tougher and tougher on even one DUI offense.

    In the end, who's to say who's being hurt or not? I asked how you guys would feel if the Pledge was "Under our lord, Siddhartha Buddha" and no one answered. You say non-theists are not being hurt by the Pledge containing "under god", but maybe that's just convenient reasoning. We claim it does hurt us, but perhaps we're just doing it to annoy you.

    There is no logical way to resolve an argument that "depends greatly on our own point of view" when you can't really know what's in the other guy's mind. "Majority rules" sounds good, but look at the history of the US, seriously, and you will see that we have consistently held (with the occasional waver) the position that no individual's rights can be violated by the state, even if the state is unable to protect him from being violated by other citizens - or to protect the citizens from hiim (in the case of criminals released on technicalities).

    Bottom line: changing the Pledge would not harm religious people, as they were able to recite it for the first 175 years of the nation's history without "under god". If there's any indication it's harming a minority, then especially considering it used to be
  23. Master-Jedi-Smith Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    May 26, 2002
    star 4
    Well said TreeCave!

    Sometimes we all get alittle carried away with arguing, and end up not respecting each other's point of views.

    Basically, I would just like to feel included when I say the POA, and not have to make a reference to any God/Creator when I do it.

    Does it hurt/harm me? Not in a physical way. But it does make me not want to say it because of those words. And why should I have to feel that way about pledging allegiance to my country?

    The country belongs to all of us. And a pledge to it should reflect and respect that as well.

    Latre! :D
  24. gwaernardel Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 5, 2001
    star 4
    I agree Master Jedi Smith.
    Just to clarify: I don't think those who criticize America should leave. I think those that actively hate America should leave. That's the beauty of living here. You can leave. People in places like Tibet can't really say the same.
    Personally, I don't see why people say the Pledge of Allegiance in school anyway. I always considered it more of a personal thing. If you want your children to say it, wake them up every morning and make them stand in fron of the American flag and say it.
    But since we do say it in school, I have a lot of difficulty understanding why the two words are needed. They weren't before 1954.
    I guess I just don't see what all the fuss is about. It's there. It's unnecessary. So we should take it out. It's not as if people are out there burning down Catholic churches or something.
  25. Darkside_Spirit Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Sep 9, 2001
    star 3
    Apparently Newdow intends to take out two more lawsuits--one against Congress for passing religious resolutions, and one against President Bush for religious references in the inaugaration. This should be interesting...

    Personally, I hope that the Supreme Court overturns the Pledge decision. The decision was right, I entirely agree with it, but it could well provoke an amendment to the US Constitution. A Supreme Court ruling against Newdow could be reversed quite easily at a later date, but repealing the Establishment Clause would be far harder, if not impossible, to reverse.
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