"I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America and to the republic for which it stands, one nation, under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all."
Did you ever think those 31 words would be so reviled by many in our country?
Recently in Eugene, Ore., the City Council and Mayor Kitty Piercy declared the pledge to be divisive and voted down a proposal to recite the Pledge before each City Council meeting, deciding instead to have it recited at the four meetings closest to the Fourth of July, Veterans Day, Memorial Day and Flag Day.
According to foxnews.com, one council member stated brazenly that the
pledge "does not unite us." Another councilwoman outrageously stated
she owes no loyalty to the United States. " I pledge loyalty to the
world," said Betty Taylor. Obviously, Ms. Taylor forgot the oath she
took while being sworn in to the Council.
Sacramento atheist Michael Newdow was unsuccessful in having the
pledge removed and from erasing the "under God" words from the pledge in
California schools. The 9th District Court of Appeals upheld the pledge
in its current form.
I have tepid tolerance for these America-haters. The patriotic-less,
and politicians who pander to them, are misguided in their thinking. I
perceive these feel-good bureaucrats as enablers for malcontents and as
ingrates who dance their political correctness to the maddening point of
America-hating has been going on since this country was founded but I
regret to tell you these whiners have gained a real foothold on the
mass media since the Obama administration assumed power in 2009.
Millions of Americans are taught it's not cool to show your love of
country and patriotism. At the Veterans Day dinner, guest speaker Maj.
Aadam Trask, U.S. Army Ranger (retired) stated, "Patriotism is neither
Republican nor Democrat; it is American."
I tell you proudly and loudly, I love the United States but I am
saddened by the spotlight given to those who detest America and disdain
any reference to God. California is mandated to teach this loyalty and
love of country in all K-12 schools. California Education Code 52720
requires a daily patriotic exercise which may include the Pledge of
Allegiance during the homeroom period of the school day. Ed Code 52720
is clear. Though no student is required to recite the pledge, all
students are required to remain standing, silent, and respectful while
the pledge is recited.
This past September, I attended a Del Norte Unified School District
Board meeting and addressed the board and Superintendent Don Olson. I
advised the Board a Brookline, Mass., group calling itself the Political
Action for Peace was attempting to have the Pledge of Allegiance
removed from the Bay State's K-12 schools, which only recites the pledge
once per week.
I asked the board to reaffirm its commitment to the California
Education Code, survey all classrooms in the district to ascertain an
American flag is prominently displayed, and verify the district is in
compliance with existing California law.
I have been told the few classrooms sans American flags have now been
so supplied, and the district is in full compliance with the State
VFW Post 1381 in Crescent City has volunteered to donate as many
American flags to the district as needed.
I congratulate the board for its commitment to the pledge.
Regrettably, up and down the Golden State, not all schools enforce
There is no country in the world which can hold a candle to how the
United States of America has evolved in its 236 years. The Pledge of
Allegiance has contributed to America's greatness by instilling in our
youth patriotism and respect. Let's protect that pledge against those
who would assault it.
I urge you all to rededicate your commitment to the Pledge of
Allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America.
Roger Gitlin is Crescent City resident, a retired teacher and a
member of the Del Norte County Tea Party.