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sctmom

Court rules Pledge of Allegiance 'unconstitutional'

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Ed -- for that matter, where does the constitution say you can't scream "Fire!" in a crowded theater? Where does it say the police have to read you your rights before questioning you? Where is the Federal Communications Commission mentioned? And while we're at it, where does it say that the Supreme Court has the right to rule legislation unconstitutional?

 

I get a kick out of these Congressmen who carry a copy of the Consitution in their breast pocket. While it's a nice touch, it means little without a truck-load of law books behind them. The Constitution says what 213 years of case law and statutes says it says.

 

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Aside from quoting case law, where in the Constitution or Bill of Rights does it say the wording "under God" promote religion?

 

It doesn't; it also doesn't say "under Jesus" does or doesn't violate the first amendment, or mention "separation of powers" or "right to a fair trial" and lots of other things established by case law.

 

And I'd like to point out that "under Jesus" doesn't establish A religion either, since there are lots of different sects that would agree with that. Same with "under the god of Abraham".

 

And by trying to ban the phrase, the remainded of the 1st Ammendment is being violated.

 

Completely wrong; I'm only trying to stop my government from using the phrase, and the government doesn't have rights, it has powers. Citizens have rights, and you can say it all you like.

 

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I find it very interesting to see where everyone lines up on this subject - for the most part along the same lines as the homosexuals in scouting debate.

 

Which brings to mind the same arguments that the "pro homosexuals in scouting" debaters like to argue that you can't say it's a slippery moral slope, while at the same time invoking the slippery slope argument for their argument with wicca / allah / etc. in the pledge.

 

then sctmom mentions something about the intent of the founding fathers and argues that we should seek out their intent except where it relates to exclusionary practices which were clearly their intent.

 

very interesting reading.

 

On a pure secular basis, i understand the argument presented about "under God" being unconstitutional but on a practical basis i reject it as not being on the slippery slope quite yet.

 

Yours "under God" in Scouting

Quixote(This message has been edited by Quixote)

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Quixote,

 

Would you want to go somewhere and be called upon to make a pledge that _disaffirmed_ your belief in God? Or would you want to make a pledge of allegiance that acknowledged Vishnu or Isis? I'm guessing not (or I wouldn't have posed the rhetorical question :-)

 

This is rendering unto Caesar, no more and no less. The American flag flies over ALL of us - and a pledge should be serviceable for all who take it. Now, if you don't REALLY want everyone to take it, that's a whole 'nother issue!

 

I still say "under heaven" - note the lowercase - does service for all, without stepping off any slippery slope.

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littlebillie,

 

If called upon to take such a pledge i would refuse just as everyone has the right NOT to day the current pledge.

 

As for your suggestion of "under heaven" i would just as soon we go back and just remove the "under God" as the intent is still there in your version.

 

Wouldn't want to go down that slippery slope of freedom OF religion.

 

If you are at a baseball game this summer be sure and don't say the Star Spangeled Banner's fifth verse

 

"O, thus be it ever when freemen shall stand,

Between their lov'd homes and the war's desolation;

Blest with vict'ry and peace, may the heav'n-rescued land

Praise the Pow'r that hath made and preserv'd us as a nation!

Then conquer we must, when our cause is just,

And this be our motto: "In God is our trust"

And the star-spangled banner in triumph shall wave

O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave!"

 

Wouldn't want to impose a religion on you.

 

Quixote

 

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Quixote,

 

So you prefer a pledge to the flag that encourages some persons of conscience NOT to take it? See, I go the other way - I'd rather as many folks, *especially* of conscience, to be able to take the pledge. I don't think the pledge should just be for certain monotheists, but rather all Americans. And I think they should all be able to take such a pledge without reservation, fully and sincerely, buying into EVERY word.

 

As far as lower case heaven goes, well, my dictionary lists sky as the first definition, so I still think it opens it up, and if Newdow still has a problem, then he's been keeping something back! (I figure that's probably true anyway, but law is law and intent is frequently something else, and this is a whole different can of worms, anyway!)

 

And as far as the National Anthem goes, you wouldn't want to hear ME singing it in the first place. :-) Regardless, you have my respect for knowing all the verses - I'd certainly need to look up the lyrics, so I'm not one to be citing them in the first place!

 

 

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on a lighter note, does anyone else remember that Porky Pig cartoon where he recites the pre-"under God" pledge?

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Littlebillie,

 

I prefer the pledge just as it currently is. I would bet that most Americans (both of concience and without as you so nicely put it) prefer the current pledge as well since the 9th circuit opinion has drawn so much fire from even the most liberal in the press and the House and Senate.

 

My point is that if it is unconstitutional to have "under God" in the pledge then it should be equally unconstitutional to have "under heaven" as heaven is a western idea of the afterlife inconsistent with some non-monotheistic religions as well as atheists who i'm sure didn't like the pledge for the last 40 odd years.

 

In the grand scheme of things, i guess i'm in favor of not giving up my freedom OF religion to those who prefer freedom FROM religion.

 

 

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the word Heaven as a place for God and his angels, sure; the word heaven, lowercase, is still just the firmament. But you're almost certainly right - there are many who would not see that distinction. and of course I should know about pleasing all of the people, all of the time, by now, too.

 

as far as the rest, I personally still prefer not to put a American Hindu or American atheist or American Wiccan or WHATEVER into the position of taking a patriotic pledge that they don't mean fully 100% - doesn't seem right, to me, somehow. Now, that's just my opinion.

 

So out of curiosity, let's say your parents are Hindu from India, and you're still Hindu, and you're raising your children - natural born American citizens - as good American Hindus. When your kids come home and start asking you about this 'under God' thing, 'cause they're learning the pledge at school, do you say it's Ganesha, and ignore the rest? Or do you say it doesn't matter, just say the words? I kinda see this as a serious question.

 

How do you tell your children to take a pledge like that without - well, y'all see where I'm going with this.

 

I can't tell anyone else how to parent, but I'm not going to teach something like that to my kid...

 

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littlebillie,

 

I would instruct my kids that we believe in God, not some other religious deity. They can say "under God" if they want, or not say it at all, depending on how they feel.

 

I understand your point, but i also have to wonder where you were on the subject before the ruling - can't recall a single thread on the subject.

 

As a practical matter on how it relates to scouts, i expect all the scouts in our troop to say the pledge unless their specific religious beliefs require them not to say it which is fine.

 

my final comments on the matter.

 

Quixote

 

 

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I knew this would be just too much fun, from comments predictable to thoughtful to fanatic, but just like arguing religion and politics, everyone will stick to their opinion while all are distracted from what's important. And some of you still wonder why the government is not allowed to promote a state religion. Pulllleeeze! Yes, the phrase "under God" excludes anyone that practices polytheism or who worships something else. But we are already saturated by the majority religion in this country from blue laws to legislation regarding reproductive freedom...without whining about our inability to buy an alcoholic beverage on Sunday morning. OK maybe some of you do whine about that. And all this argument contributes what to the boys right now? Not much. For that matter, the southern states could just as well object to the "indivisible" word in the pledge...we certainly didn't apply the spirit of that word at one time in our sad history. We could do better by focusing on what is good for the boys right now...and let the trivial pass. Packsaddle

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There is nothing wrong with Scouters debating the issues of the day. Yes, we may not be directly contributing to "the cause" (i.e., the boys). However, I happen to think defending the pledge and its Constitutionality is a pretty good cause and somewhat related to Scouting, even if others do not. Nevertheless, I too am growing tired of repeating myself and/or watching others do likewise. Its not that the battle isn't worth fighting, but alas there seems to be little movement.

 

I do have one last parting comment (and it has nothing to do with the original thread...sorry):

 

reproductive freedom - Try not to take this personally, but this phrase makes me physically ill. It's at the top of my list...just ahead of "alternative lifestyle". It amazes me how the English language can be twisted to sterilize the most depraved causes.

 

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Rooster,

 

For all our differences, we do share a lot of common ground. Abortion is murder. (period)! (exclamation point)

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I would like to be able to sit around a camp fire with all of y'all, just to see if we could share the spirit of scouting without interjecting our own personal opinions about anything.

 

Howse-come you all haven't "passed" the knot?

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The tone of some of the comments in this tread indicates that the writers think of the Pledge of Allegiance as some kind of pledge to God. It is not. It is a pledge of allegiance to our country. One can be Hindu and still pledge allegiance to our country. The reference to "under God" simply indicates that the most of the citizens of this country believe in God. It is not a statement of an individuals belief in God.

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