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The Pledge of Allegiance

July 4, 2008 Media, Religion 4 Comments

We recited the pledge as children in school and occasionally as adults. It has meaning but it has also changed over the years since first written in 1892. The pledge did not become officially recognized by the U.S. government until June 1942 (wiki).

Comedian Red Skelton was in his late 20s by this time but he still had recited the pledge in school. He recalled the pledge on his show in January 1969:


When Skelton was in school our nation only had 48 states.

The words “under God” originated with the Knights of Columbus in NYC in 1951 and by 1954 they became official. Personally I think the pledge, originally written by a minister, was better without reference to a deity. Recent court cases have challenged the “under god” phrasing. At least one bill has been introduced in a prior session of congress that would have forbidden the Supreme Court from ruling on challenges the the wording or mandating of the pledge. Of course Congress can’t pass a law prohibiting the Supreme Court from ruling on constitutional matters.
Happy Independence Day!


Currently there are "4 comments" on this Article:

  1. John Daly says:

    Each individual must come to their own conclusion on whether there is something greater than theirselves. Since we only get one shot at life, let us hope we make the right call. It’s great to see that you’re running through stop signs again 🙂 Did I hear that Professor Gordon will be on Collateral Damage tonight discussing Mapping Decline?

  2. Ed says:

    I saw Red Skelton at the Muny back in the early 80’s and he did this same skit. I was good catholic boy and throught it was great. It’s interesting to read the history on wiki and see randomly such changes are made in our country.

  3. Allison says:

    I don’t know how many times I’ve tried to tell people that the God reference hasn’t always been there. People just take it for granted now, which, as an agnostic (leaning atheist), irks me. And don’t even get me started on the Cards featuring “God Bless America” before/during games. Religious ideas have no place in sporting events that draw a mixed bag of 40K people. Ugh.

  4. law student says:

    For better or worse, Congress can pass a law preventing the Supreme Court from ruling on Constitutional issues, under Art. 3 Sec. 2: “In all the other Cases before mentioned, the supreme Court shall have appellate Jurisdiction…with such Exceptions, and under such Regulations as the Congress shall make”


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