The Pledge Of Allegiance

John Leland in appealing to the Father of our Constitution, James Madison, for religious freedom wrote:

“There is no Bill of Rights. Whenever a number of men enter int a state of society, a number of individual rights must be given up to society, but there should be a memorial of those not surrendered, otherwise, every natural and domestic right becomes alienable, which raises tyranny at once, and this is as necessary in one form or government as in another.” Now, there is a thought! Note, “a number of rights must be given up to society.”

Acting in response to Leland’s appeal Madison acted when the First Congress convened in January 1789. Early in the session Madison presented the first Ten Amendments to the Constitution, called the Bill of Rights. In part the first of these stated: “Congress shall make no laws respecting the establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.”

Parenthetically, neither should the courts.

This Bill of Rights was intended to do two things. One, was to forbid the establishment of a state sponsored denomination as was common in Europe. Second, it restricts laws being made “prohibiting the free exercise thereof.” This simply leveled the playing field for all denominations and removed road blocks to the practice of religion.

The proponents of the First Amendment wanted to insure freedom OF religion not freedom FROM religion.

To pledge allegiance or not to pledge? Somebody’s right have to be given up. If we have freedom of speech, if we have freedom of religion, if we have a pledge approved by Congress in 1952, and practiced by millions ever since —- let’s pledge.

Why should the rights of the vast majority have to be given up to appease a religious minority?

Atheism is a form of religious belief about God.

Why do atheist want the Pledge of Allegiance removed from schools? Are they trying to convert Christians to their belief in no God?

A glimpse of what Congress intended is found in this Congressional Decree of 1782:
“It being the indispensable duty of all nations, not only to offer up their supplications to Almighty God, the giver of all good, for his gracious assistance in a time of distress, but also in a solemn and public manner to give him praise for his goodness in general…”

It continued and concluded:
“…they do further recommend to all ranks and testify their gratitude of God for his goodness, by cheerful obedience to his laws, and by protecting, each in his station, and by his influence, the practice and undefiled religion, which is the great foundation of public prosperity and national happiness.”

In these turbulent times of terrorism we need to consider well these words of Benjamin Franklin: “We need God to be our friend, not our adversary.”

Let’s pledge!