Pledge of Allegiance unconstitutional

Discussion in 'Politics & Religion' started by Gordon Gekko, Jun 26, 2002.

  1. personally, I THINK THIS IS GREAT!

    .c The Associated Press

    SAN FRANCISCO (June 26) - For the first time ever, a federal appeals court Wednesday declared the Pledge of Allegiance unconstitutional because of the words ''under God'' added by Congress in 1954.

    The ruling, if allowed to stand, means schoolchildren can no longer recite the pledge, at least in the nine Western states covered by the court.

    In a 2-1 decision, the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals said the phrase amounts to a government endorsement of religion in violation of the Constitution's Establishment Clause, which requires a separation of church and state.

    ''A profession that we are a nation 'under God' is identical, for Establishment Clause purposes, to a profession that we are a nation 'under Jesus,' a nation 'under Vishnu,' a nation 'under Zeus,' or a nation 'under no god,' because none of these professions can be neutral with respect to religion,'' Judge Alfred T. Goodwin wrote for the three-judge panel.

    The government had argued that the religious content of ''one nation under God'' is minimal.

    But the appeals court said that an atheist or a holder of certain non-Judeo-Christian beliefs could see it as an endorsement of monotheism.

    ''We are certainly considering seeking further review in the matter,'' Justice Department lawyer Robert Loeb said.

    The 9th Circuit covers Alaska, Arizona, California, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Oregon and Washington state. Those are the only states directly affected by the ruling.

    However, the ruling does not take effect for several months, to allow further appeals. The government can ask the court to reconsider, or take its case to the U.S. Supreme Court.

    The case was brought by Michael A. Newdow, a Sacramento atheist who objected because his second-grade daughter was required to recite the pledge at the Elk Grove school district. A federal judge had dismissed his lawsuit.

    ''I'm an American citizen. I don't like my rights infringed upon by my government,'' he said in an interview. Newdow called the pledge a ''religious idea that certain people don't agree with.''

    The appeals court said that when President Eisenhower signed the legislation inserting ''under God'' after the words ''one nation,'' he wrote that ''millions of our schoolchildren will daily proclaim in every city and town, every village and rural schoolhouse, the dedication of our nation and our people to the Almighty.''

    The court noted that the U.S. Supreme Court has said students cannot hold religious invocations at graduations and cannot be compelled to recite the pledge. But when the pledge is recited in a classroom, a student who objects is confronted with an ''unacceptable choice between participating and protesting,'' the appeals court said.

    ''Although students cannot be forced to participate in recitation of the pledge, the school district is nonetheless conveying a message of state endorsement of a religious belief when it requires public school teachers to recite, and lead the recitation of, the current form of the pledge,'' the court said.
  2. Absolutely great news! A definite step in the right direction.
    Now, if only the supreme court will uphold the decision.

    Next step: get rid of the "In god we trust" on the money.
  3. i agree 100%.
  4. also, keep in mind that the words "under god" were not even part of the original pledge of allegiance. they were added later by congress. that was the mistake right should have been left how it was.

    this ruling is so correct, but it's gonna be tough because there are so many people that are brainwashed by religion.. especially these old people who happen to be running our country right now. if this ruling gets overturned, i'd bet anything that within 1 or 2 generations all this god stuff goes out the window.

    the pledge would be fine if it said, "one nation, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all." "under god" is not needed! "god" shouldn't be on money either. "e pluribus unum" is fine.. "of many one" makes sense. why the f*ck do we need "in god we trust" on our freaking money?!?!?!?
  5. During high school the kids would say "underdog" in place of "under God" to piss off the homeroom teacher. Perhaps this would now be a legal recitation of the pledge.

    Barring that, how about having the children sing "Godless America".

    Of course this only applies to the left coast.

    It will be interesting to watch the Supreme Court overturn this ruling since the Court of Appeals laid some land mines in their ruling.
  6. Neutron:

    you must have gone to the same catholic grade school I did...I remember back in those days, we had to all form a single file line prior to lunch and if one guy screwed up the prayer, we had to all do it again...On more than a few occassions, our lunch time was cut from 30 minutes to about 10 minutes...Nowadays, a parent would find out about this and probably file a lawsuit for

    I hadn't remembered the "underdog" thing in about 15 years, just brought that memory back
  7. skerbitz


  8. this is absolutely the worst decision that has come out of the courts. we have gone completely over the edge.
  9. ok. some activist psychopath on a California bench decides it's time to fulfill Andy Warhol's prophecy for himself...ho-hum.
  10. people probably said the same thing when it was first thought that the earth revolved around the sun.. or that the earth was round. this decision is truly revolutionary and is a step in the right direction. the trouble is, the decision may be ahead of its time. there are too many religious people like you in control of this country. however, it is inevitable that religion will get weaker and weaker. i hope we find some little bugs on mars soon to once again slam the bible. the majority is always the last to catch on.
    #10     Jun 27, 2002