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Pledge of Allegiance Ruled Unconstitutional(50 posts)

Pledge of Allegiance Ruled Unconstitutionaljose_Tex_mex
Jun 26, 2002 12:50 PM
SAN FRANCISCO, California (CNN) -- A federal appeals court ruled Wednesday that the Pledge of Allegiance to the U.S. flag cannot be recited in public schools because the phrase "under God" endorses religion.

You really just have to wonder about the timing of such events. I am going to look outside for the horsemen...
It's about time!Wayne
Jun 26, 2002 1:21 PM
I always wondered why that was in our pledge of allegiance, it was inserted in 1954 and was not part of the original. It's clearly an endorsement of religion, the best idea the founding fathers had was the separation of church and state even if they were all theists and couldn't imagine anyone not believing in a god. I don't understand why people who are religious (well actually Judeo-Christians since God clearly doesn't include the Gods of the Hindus, etc.) feel the need to have the government sanction their beliefs. Belief in God will never go away, don't worry, because it answers a fundumental problem of the human condition, we alone amongst the animals recognize our existence and have the faculties and foresight to see that others around cease to exist and therefore realize that one-day we will no longer exist, God exists because of the denial of death. It is just too much for some people to believe that it will end when the heart stops getting the blood to the brain. It seems like to me our government committed alot more wrongs back in the days when it was a more "religious" institution. I hardly see the removal of religion from the state has having anything to do with the "goodness" of our country and the coming of the horsemen. If you or anyone is relying on the belief in god, or a punishment/reward in an afterlife, to guide your behavior that's sad, belief in God has never stopped a bad person from doing a bad thing, but it's caused plenty of otherwise good people to commit awful acts.
Seperation does not mean mutual exclusion.jose_Tex_mex
Jun 26, 2002 4:22 PM
If it were "clearly" an endorsement I do not think it would have taken the supreme court to decide. Furthermore, if it were clear one would expect the vote to be 3-0 and not 2-1.

The current degree to which we are separating the church and state was not what our founding forefathers had in mind. Separation does not mean the two are mutually exclusive which is what you appear to favor. If so, we should not be surprised at the A-moral behaviour of politicians - in fact you should encourage it.

Without Religion from where do we derive morality? Like it or not most of our morals come from a Judeo-Christian perspective. Should we then seperate out the moral components of religion and have a pure bureacracy and/or laws based solely upon our own narcissism as tax payers?

As for "God exists because of the denial of death" do you have any further enlightenment - perhaps, let us know if man is estranged in essence!

Your final statement is just plain wrong. You say [God ?] ... "caused plenty of otherwise good people to commit awful acts." Correct me if I am wrong but you are saying that God actually took it upon "himself" to commit the awful act? I think you need to clarify.

Finally, you may not see the complete removal of religion from the state as having anything to do with goodness, but what about having to do with badness?
Seperation does not mean mutual exclusion...Wayne
Jun 27, 2002 4:12 AM
I agree. You are failing to distinguish between the state promoting a religion and an individual expressing his religion. If you or a senator or the president want's to include a reference to god in a public speech I have no problem with that. It's when a public institution, in this case the school system, tacitly approves a religion, in this case Christianity (I was being too generous before when I said judeo-christian because clearly when this was inserted it meant the "Christian" God, and not the God of the Jews or Muslims even if historically speaking these are all the same "God").
Your assumption that morality can not be derived without a belief in god is simply wrong. Every culture that has existed on earth has or had morals, they may not be the same ones you have as a christian but nonetheless, they are morals. Morals that are derived from the simple fact that we are a social animal that lives in groups and therefore have to have guidelines to regulate our behavior amongst ourselves can be no less capricious or arbitrary than those derived from a, "it's right because God says so" based morality.
Of course, I don't believe Gods exists, so when I say God caused people to commit awful acts, I mean their belief in God led them to do or at least allow acts to take place that otherwise they would not have allowed to occur. The most glaring instance of this in history perhaps was the salem witch burnings. Whole communities stood by as their neighbors were burned alive because that was the "will of God".
And finally, as I think you can see from the political reaction to the pledge ruling the vast majority of politicians at every level in this country are theists and that was certainly the case historically so any governmental badness that has taken place certainly wasn't committed by "evil" atheists but good 'ole god-fearing christians. Clearly, theists can be bad people and atheists can be good people, in fact, I would say as a percentage of the respective populations there are more "good" atheists than "good" christians since the former are almost exclusively intelligent thoughful people who have only arrived at labeling themselves atheists through reflection and observation whereas most christians are only in that category due to the contigency of birth in a "christian" country. I wish religion did prevent bad people but experience tells me otherwise!
Please, please, please....Jon Billheimer
Jun 27, 2002 8:18 AM
Wayne, don't label "good" atheists as intelligent, thoughtful people, and Christians as not. You're too intelligent a person to make such naive generalizations. BTW, I am NOT a Christian and have major issues with fundamentalisms of all sorts. But I try not to indulge in the same type of blanket generalizations as do some of those with whom I disagree.
Now if you go back and read...Wayne
Jun 27, 2002 8:46 AM
what I said there is no blanket generalization but rather a statement that a greater percentage...
I would stand by it, because I would say that most thoughtful, intelligent, reflective people are good people (wouldn't lie, steal, cheat, abuse other people physically or mentally, etc.). Lots of christians could be described that way. But you don't find too many people who become atheists off-hand, whereas there are boat-loads of christians who only hold the beliefs (to a great variety of extents) simply because they were born into it. Consequently a greater percentage of atheists are likely to be thoughtful, intelligent, reflective people than Christians. I should probably qualify that by saying in the US, since in Russia or many other (former) communist countries there should be alot of born into it atheists!
Arguing Definitions and Semanticsjose_Tex_mex
Jun 27, 2002 1:38 PM
I agree with you that the state should not force anyone to pray. However, I think calling the Pledge of Allegiance a prayer is a bit of a stretch. Do not Muslims, Christians, and Jews all look upon and revere the God of the "Old" testament? I disagree that by saying "under God" is tacit approval for the Christian religion. If they were to say under Jesus I would accept your arguement.

As for the basis of morality, this arguement will quickly go to a definition. I suppose anyone who lives up to the standards of right or good conduct could be considered moral no matter what the standard is. The standard we have used in the west is the Judaeo-Christian model.

We could look upon monkeys and apes and say that they are moral. However, what I was trying to show was that most of the morals in our society can trace their roots back to religious sources. Point being, if you want to 100% remove religion from gov't why not remove its by products as well. If so, where will this leave us.

It is my opinion that the western world with its traditions steeped in Judaism and Christianity has done quite well. We are not perfect. However, when I see the state of the Muslim and Hindu world - what can I say? Your definition of morality sounds like a bureacracy . Again, you could devise your own standards but how far off of what we already have would they be?

Many morals are based on a human life being somehow more valuable because of the belief of the existence in a soul. If this is not so then I would expect you to not believe that "all men were created equal." Without a belief in God this statement is easily disproved. Again, if we are going to remove religion from gov't in an absolute fashion where do we stop?

As for your last paragraph - now you are just trolling. Didn't the former Soviet Union devoid itself of God? Doesn't China ban Christianity and Judaism? If you think life there is better there or that their system superesedes ours than what can I say?

The only reason you perceive your Atheist colleagues as being superior to others is because you engage them on a purely theoretical level. I would love to see you and 260,000,000 atheists doing a better job than we have here in the good ole' USA.
A few misunderstandings..Wayne
Jun 28, 2002 3:16 AM
I was not in any way implying that communist countries are superior in any respect to capitalist/democracies, only that they have alot of atheists who are only atheists because of tradition. I think our country's capitalism and democracy is the fairest system of government in history because it's the one that grants the most personal freedom (and therefore responsibility which alot of people seem to have trouble with). Totally agree that is wrong to force anyone to believe anything, especially religious doctrine (my lab mates mom is currently in jail in China because of her belief in that religious movement sweeping the country, Fu Gong, or something like that). I don't think atheists are superior to christians, only that the group as a whole tends to be more intelligent, reflective, etc.
It would be like saying whites are better educated than blacks, or commit less crime (as a percentage of the respective populations). Those are both facts that can be documented in any number of ways (test scores, highest level of schooling, number of people charged with crime, number in prison, etc.). Those are populational statements and never apply to any individual or imply that being a member of the group (whether religious or racial) is the CAUSE of that observation! Black people in this country don't commit more crime becaue of their ethnicity, but because of their legal exclusion from the educational and economic mainstream up until 30 or so years ago and continued non-legal bias they face due to their ethnicity!
morality can and does occur outside the judeo-christian modelColnagoFE
Jun 27, 2002 12:31 PM
don't you think islam? judaism and the other major and minor religions and new agey-type groups have some type of moral system in place? seems a bit presumptious and arrogant to say that the only moral enforcer is the judeo-christian religion. not that i really care one way or the other, but under God with a capital "G" definately seems to specifically endorse the judeo christian God. unfortunately God doesn't show or speak for Himself and to believe in him requires quite a bit of blind faith and a belief that some book written 2000+ years ago is the divine word of God. sorry, but i have to have more to base my life (and afterlife) on than that.
I wish people would actually read the posts they reply tojose_Tex_mex
Jun 27, 2002 1:05 PM
1) Is not the God of the Torah accepted by Jews, Christians, and Muslims? Yes, Chrisitans believe in Jesus Christ as per the New Testament and likewise the Muslims wrt the Qu'ran. However, their roots are the same. Thus, many of their moral beliefs are the same.
2) Never said nor implied that Christianity or Judaism were pre-requisites for morality. However, like it or not, our country's morals are based upon those derived out of the Torah and New Testament.
3) Where did I say or infer "moral enforcer is the judeo-christian religion."
4) As for blind faith - wrong - it's more aptly called credulity.
5) Everything in life requires some faith as nothing is knowable. From the very basics of Quantum Mechanics there's a bit of guess work and probability in everything.
6) The fact that the New Test is 2000 and the Torah I believe 5000 is a testament to its enduring message.
Well, you've hit the heart of the matter..Wayne
Jun 28, 2002 3:42 AM
5) Everything in life requires some faith as nothing is knowable.
That's right to a degree, so why not instead of faith to believe in something just say I don't know (agnosticism).
Atheism has the problem of claiming god doesn't exist which is not provable, any more than you can prove there aren't aliens, bigfoot or the Lochness monster. Better IMHO just to say I don't know!
But some things are knowable, that's the whole point of the scientific method, is to ensure that you what you know is a fact! But a tentative fact that can be disproved or modified with new/better data!

6) The fact that the New Test is 2000 and the Torah I believe 5000 is a testament to its enduring message.
No doubt, but that has no bearing on whether claims of a benevolent omnipotent God that presides over the universe are true. Bullshit is bullshit no matter whether it's repeated for a day or 5000 yrs.
The only basis for belief in God is faith, if that is adequate for you than let his teachings guide your life, I am a skeptic and reject faith as a valid way to know about the universe, thankfully we live in a country that both of us can hold our beliefs and tolerate each other and live happy fullfilling lives!

"The Church says the Earth is flat, but I know that it is round. For I have seen the shadow on the Moon, and I have more faith in a shadow than in the Church."
Ferdinand Magellan
We're Mostly In Agreement - but knowability?!jose_Tex_mex
Jun 28, 2002 7:41 AM
I see where you are coming from and athough I do not agree with you 100% I can definitely respect your well thought out position. WRT you other posting, I did not believe you were trying to say the former USSR was in any way superior. I was trying to use them as an example of alternatives and show that despite our many faults our system and many others like it in Europe appear to work the best.

My last thought is wrt to the scientific method. In the most accurate sense of our diction nothing is knowable. I believe this was the whole Kant vs Hume arguement - I don't think Kant ever proved Hume wrong.

For example, my old math books have a lot of "proofs" in them. However, they all start off with either "let," "suppose," "given," or "if." The first word basically says - well if you believe this, then the following is true. That's not really a proof - it's more of a demonstration, corrolary, contrapositive or something. If I say no, I want to see the given part proved, nothing will be accomplished.

Science deals a lot with observation. All electromagnetic energy is in a constant state of change. No two people (or eyes) can look upon the same exact quantum event.

Suppose you wanted to measure something with a ruler. The ruler is one frame of reference and the object being measured another. There can never be non motion between the two reference frames (said Einstein). Since the meter is based on a wavelength of Krypton any motion causes the ruler to undergo time dilation and/or length contraction. Thus, we cannot measure with 100% accuracy.

Granted, we are going towards the "meta" physical here, but in Modern Physics it stands. I happen to love science because of its reproduceability. Indeed I use the term proof loosely. However, when someone (not you) plays the prove God card, I am quickly to show that nothing can be proven.

This discussion is actually a fun one. Should start a posting on this...

Best of Luck
Do you still believe in Santa Claus too?ColnagoFE
Jun 28, 2002 11:43 AM
I mean that is just about as plausible as god creating the world in 7 days. Even science revises its thinking when a sufficiently advanced theory comes along. Can't say the same thing about most organized religions. People often want god to exist because they don't want to be responsible for creating their own meaning in the world. If there is no god (not sure myself...that's why i consider myself an agnostic)...then what it the purpose of anything outside of what meaning you create for yourself?
Is there a point here?jose_Tex_mex
Jun 28, 2002 12:10 PM
What is "that" to which you refer in "that is just about as plausible..." I have no idea what you are talking about nor what your point/conclusion is. Please elaborate.

I will simply state what David Hume concluded in A Treatise on Human Nature - "nothing is knowable." You may disagree. However, over the centuries since he said this no one has been able to "prove" him wrong.

Why would Science need to revise anything if they have indeed fully proven their postulate? Revision implies either their methods or conclusion was flawed. Revision implies correction not enhancement. If science is perfect and they proved something absolutely you can never go back later and revise.

You appear to be confusing probabilities with fact. If something is 99.999999% likely to occur (it's most probable) and we can derive an equation out of this. Some people will validate the equation with "proofs." However, this is a loose interpretation of the word and is not absolute proof. Definitely, not the proof that people use when saying prove God exists. Can you prove you exist?

Think about what you are saying. Scientists use science to prove their point. Science is not perfect nor can it provide absolute proof. You cannot prove anyhting with probabilities. When a religious person uses religious sources as proof - you would probably laugh them out the room. Both systems rely on faith.

If you disagree with anything I have said, simply prove something, anything to me. I will demonstrate [more than likely] using either Quantum Mechanics, Modern Physics, or Thermodynamics where you went wrong..
I am not attempting to prove anythingColnagoFE
Jun 28, 2002 2:07 PM
I'm just saying one may as well believe Santa Claus exists than that God created the world in 7 days. Same with quantum physics. Nothing is provable beyond all doubt. Heck we may be all living a shared hallucination. You may not be real. I might just be dreaming you or myself, but so what? It doesn't make any difference. I choose not to believe that the Bible is the inspired word of God--assuming that God even exists outside our own may choose to believe it. To each his/her own.
Are you an objectivist?Wayne
Jun 28, 2002 12:13 PM
You may enjoy reading the philosophy of Ayn Rand. If you can stomach her novels (I found them largely boring) her philosophy is expressed in them as well.
Quite ironically for an atheistic philosophy, Rand is an interesting "jesus" figure or cult of personality. There are people who think anything she uttered is an absolute truth and can't distinguish the valuable in her philosophy from the crap (such as art or beauty being absolute, objective phenomena).
Anyway her answer to the purpose of your life is simple and what comes to mind if I ponder the question:

"Achievement of your happiness is the only moral purpose of your life, and that happiness——not pain or mindless self-indulgence——is the proof of your moral integrity, since it is the proof and the result of your loyalty to the achievement of your values."
Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged
try applying that Ayn Rand quote to Pol Pot, Hitler, etc... (nm)ColnagoFE
Jun 28, 2002 2:09 PM
Well, if you recognize the legitimate, moral purpose...Wayne
Jul 1, 2002 3:14 AM
of your life, and anyone else's as being the pursuit of your own/their own happiness than you can see how logically you have no right to achieve your happiness at the expense or through the exploitation of others! Your rights stop where they infringe upon anothers!
Rand wasn't really original, Aristotle also identified the moral purpose of life as the pursuit of personal happiness (although he probably was only talking about Greek men of the social elite to which he belonged). She just took that principle and tried to extend it into a complete logical/rational philosophy for individual/societal life.
I'll be damnednn23
Jul 1, 2002 4:33 PM
" Without Religion from where do we derive morality? " those who believe in god but not in religion are amoral? What about the atheists? Not even god can save *them*. ;)

Religion derives from morality, not morality from religion. While morals are universal, religions are compilations of those morals. So while people may follow different religions, the different religions are fundamentally based on the same morals.

Did not mean to offend.

- nn23
regarding separation of church and stateDuane Gran
Jul 1, 2002 9:11 AM
It is my understanding that the concept of the separation of church and state (which is a legal term, not a consititional mandate) means that there should be no "Church of America." In other words, this country has no official religion and no religion will be declared illegal.

My personal view is that this orginal meaning has been lost and the more modern view is to have an agnostic state, where all forms of religious expression in public are shunned. This seems pretty neurotic to me, and I think a more healthy approach would be to recognize the religious influences in our society and to not get stressed about displays of faith.
About damn time, too (but that's not really what happened).cory
Jun 26, 2002 1:24 PM
"Under God" is a relatively recent addition to the pledge. I was in elementary school when they added it, in the '50s. Not at the time, but as soon as I got old enough to think about it, I wondered what it meant to people who are loyal Americans but believe in a different god, or no god. It seemed to narrow the gap between church and state a little more than I could be comfortable with.
The pledge itself is hardly an ancient document--it was first published in 1892. And like all pledges and loyalty oaths, it's pretty much useless. If you were committed to overthrowing the government, would you balk at taking an oath that said you wouldn't? Or suddenly remember that, hey, I can't do this--I pledged allegiance in fourth grade? It's just feel-good stuff.
About damn time, too (but that's not really what happened).bikedodger
Jun 26, 2002 1:59 PM
I think the reason the "under God" was added in the 50's was to prove that we were all against those darn godless commies.
don't forget Superman...mr_spin
Jun 26, 2002 3:00 PM
He was always for truth and justice, but in the 50's they added "and the American way." Because everyone knows Superman doesn't care about Canada.

People were red-scare crazy back then. I hope America never goes through that phase again.
Are you kidding me? We're right back in "that phase!"jose_Tex_mex
Jun 27, 2002 1:49 PM
The red scare will seem like nothing in a few decades when we look back and see what the terrorism -scare did to us.

Already we have detained individuals without trial, charge, blah, blah, blah. We are creating a Homeland Security Bureau which will have the ability to effectively supersede your every constitutional right.

As for the right to Privacy, other than what's in your head there is none.

Let the defense spending begin - we have a new bad guy on the block!
Jun 27, 2002 2:15 PM
OW, Canadian guy!
You're correct. That is the reason we added "under god"(nm)Dave Hickey
Jun 26, 2002 5:15 PM
re: Pledge of Allegiance Ruled UnconstitutionalDougSloan
Jun 26, 2002 6:04 PM
I'll check the actual decision and post it here if anyone cares, but I wonder whether the court said that it "cannot be recited" or simply that it can't be done in an organized way at the direction of the school staff. In other words, do the students still have a 1st Amendment right to say it if they want to?

I think the decision is more of a symbolic win for the atheists than anything.

You don't currently have to say the pledge...Wayne
Jun 27, 2002 3:22 AM
of allegiance if you don't want to anyway. I think the decision was based on the state promoting a religion, which is similar to the whole school prayer issue. It has nothing to do with if you as an individual what to include God in your private life. Nonetheless it will be rapidly overturned because of the political climate in this country and the fact that the vast majority of people at least give lip service to being christians and think anyone who isn't is somehow a less "good" person. Not to call for it's overturning and criticize it, as almost every politician in the country did, would be equivalent to being in favor of school integration back in the '30s, i.e. political suicide!
i was suspended from junior high school twice for...JS Haiku Shop
Jun 27, 2002 5:01 AM
not standing for the colors at class gatherings/school functions. to me, the same thing. i agree that it was a long time in coming, but is most appropriate. "one nation under god" is subjective; this is the same as swearing on the bible/taking the oath in court. is that even done anymore?

wasn't that i was unpatriotic, but just didn't want to do what i was told. american or not, religious or not, patriotic or not, no other person or organization (aside from police for an emergency/safety situation or if you've given up your rights and are in detention) should be able to force this type of thing upon another.

if i weren't forced to do it, i might have complied willingly.
Amen, brother...Wayne
Jun 27, 2002 5:25 AM
I don't think legally they had a foot to stand on, but that never stops local administrators doing what they "know" is right. Take case in NJ (?) recently, of the girl who was going to give her valedictorian speech and they made her edit out all her Jesus talk. She should have been free to say whatever she thought was relevant, it was her speech, not the schools! Same thing though, local officials doing what they think is right without consulting the law.
What do they do in court about the swearing an oath thing? Doug your a lawyer, aren't you?
I mean swearing an oath on the bible is as meaningful to me as if it were a pile of Playboys!
The Oathmickey-mac
Jun 27, 2002 5:37 AM
In California, I've never seen a witness sworn in using a bible and have never heard the word God invoked in the procedure. In fact, clerks and court reporters frequently ask witness to "affirm" rather than "swear" that they'll tell the truth.
God save the United States and this Honorable
Jun 27, 2002 7:55 AM
The clerk's call to order in the federal courts with which I am most familiar (US Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit and the District of Maryland) ends with "God save the United States and this Honorable Court." The Supreme Court uses the same phrase. Are the Ninth Circuit (i.e., the Court that handed down the decision) and the District Courts in the Circuit still invoking God?
i was suspended from junior high school twice for...Pygme
Jun 27, 2002 6:11 AM
Glad you let me know that JS Haiku Shop. I, for one, would not stand up to help you if you got run over by a car while cycling.

Turn your back on your country, you turn your back on me and I will respond in kind.
perhaps you misread or missed the pointJS Haiku Shop
Jun 27, 2002 7:28 AM
"turn your back on your country"...never have i done such a thing.

however, forcing one to recite a pledge to "one nation under god", "God" the keyword here, is in fact turning one's back on the constitution. forcing one to stand when the flags of state, country, and school are presented is turning your back on the constitution.

"Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances."

...and to say you would "not stand up to help...if you got run over by a car while cycling" is offensive in any context, religion and statehood aside.
Come on...Wayne
Jun 27, 2002 8:33 AM
do you really think being willing to stand up and say a stupid oath has anything to do with being a patriot! And why are we having kids do it, its like we're trying to brainwash them? If you love your country it should be because of the principles it stands for and how they've been implemented, not because it's been drilled into you that this is your country and therefore you MUST love it. I would say even if I hadn't been born here, that the US has got it about as right as any country in the world, and I would fight to defend it if our way of life was threatened. But I'm a decent human being, and would never not help a person because they're political views differ from mine. That's actually about as un-american as you could be!

"Law and Order is like patriotism -- anyone who comes on strong about patriotism has got something to hide; it never fails. They always turn out to be a crook or an asshole or something."
Bill Mauldin
that's the spiritmr_spin
Jun 27, 2002 8:45 AM
Don't say the oath, and I will not help you?

Nice to know you understand the basic idea behind Christian charity!!!

Makes me wonder why we are putting Americans in harm's way in Afghanistan. Makes me wonder why we hit the beaches at Normandy. None of those people pledged allegiance to the United States. They don't deserve our help.
Civil Disobedience vs Being a Punkjose_Tex_mex
Jun 27, 2002 1:59 PM
Anyone who has actually given thought to their beliefs and respectfully decides on a course of action often will at least get my respect if not my approval. However, what you describe is sounds more like Jimmy high school being pissed off at the world and wants to rebel against everything because he cannot decide on any particular thing.

As for not standing for the colors being the same thing "to you" shows that you are/were just trying to make trouble.

As for your "rights" - did you respect the rights of others? Correct me if I am wrong but your school does have custodial rights over you. Guess what, until you were old enough they could make you do certain things. If you were old enough to leave why didn't you? Get out there on your own and show the world just how ignorant and backa$$wards it is.
thanks for your opinion. nmJS Haiku Shop
Jun 28, 2002 5:03 AM
"Punk" not directed towards you - Sorry - was used in General...jose_Tex_mex
Jun 28, 2002 7:48 AM
JS Haiku Shop,
In the topic field where I used the word "Punk" I was not directing it towards you personally. After seeing the posting I thought I needed to clear that up.

I apologize if it appeared otherwise - I'll try not to be so inflamatory in the future in topic fields.

I am glad to see you have found an outlet in Haiku-ing for your creative energies :-)
no offense taken! nmJS Haiku Shop
Jun 28, 2002 10:02 AM
re: Pledge of Allegiance Ruled UnconstitutionalPygme
Jun 27, 2002 6:08 AM
The ironic thing is that The Supreme Court of the US really set themselves up for this fight last week.

In a ruling on the death penalty and "retardation" they stated that "public opinion" has changed and the execution of borderline retarded will therefore be unconstitutional.

"Public opinion" overwhelmingly favors the Pledge of Allegience as it is. So, what does the Supreme Court say?

We cant give into "public opinion" and let the ruling stand?
The wise old men and women of the Supreme Court create a pickle for themselves.
Not the Supreme Court...Brooks
Jun 27, 2002 8:20 AM
Ruling was by the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco. Ruling only applicable withnin the 9th Circuit (7 western states). BTW, the 9th is by far the most overturned Circuit Court in the States and considered the most liberal.

I have to agree that god and religion is a private matter and should not be referenced in official government actions. Take the reference off of money and out of the Pledge and stop opening sessions of Congress with prayers!
One nation under a grooveStampertje
Jun 27, 2002 8:30 AM
Hear, hear.

While we're at it: while I'm not American and not religious, I'll stand for the national anthem out of respect. But I think axing "Take me out to the ball game" for "God bless America" is a disgrace to the sport and the nation.

Not the Supreme Court...Pygme
Jul 1, 2002 5:07 PM
I know that. My point is that it will end up at the Supreme Court before it is over.
don't they have more important matters to discuss? (nm)ColnagoFE
Jun 27, 2002 7:40 AM
re: Pledge of Allegiance Ruled UnconstitutionalBikeViking
Jun 27, 2002 7:48 AM
Our national preoccupation with "God" is unceasing. There should be no religious references to anything having to do with government. Inferring that "God" also refers to Allah, Yahweh, Krishna does not account those of us who may be athiests, Wiccans, Buddhists, Mithraists, pagans etc. Removing "In God We Trust" from money should also be an eventual goal. I don't cringe anytime I hear about God, but it is the PRIVATE business of individuals, not something the gov't should be endorsing, tacitly or otherwise. If someone talks about their religion in a speech, that's great because it's their right. Religion does not belong in gov't in any way.
Who cares?Len J
Jun 27, 2002 8:51 AM
Of all the problems and opportunities we have in this country, the pledge of allegiance and it's inclusion of the word god is the least. Yet it garners so much emotional energy. Why? Maybe because it distracts us from those problems that are more complex and harder to understand and solve.

I say save your emotional energy for something that matters.

Words, just words, but why are Christians disliked so much?OutWest
Jun 27, 2002 2:51 PM
It seems like we are blamed for causing huge amounts of pain and suffering, forcing our will upon others and "trying to take over the world" (or was that Pinky And The Brain?). Are we too pushy? Intolerant? Or do we just rub some people the wrong way?
Believe it or not there are other religions that cause huge amounts of suffering but I suppose they aren't dominant on the North American continent and therefore aren't targeted.
In some countries Christians are being killed regularly in large numbers.
For that matter when it comes to mass murder I would tend to say politics and the atheists have it when you read the death toll per Uncle Joe Stalin and Hitler. People of all faiths or no faith cause suffering using any excuse they can.
I do not agree that is more likely an atheist will be a good person because they arrived to that conclusion through rational thought while most Christians are born into it (and perhaps figure they have got it made). There are lots of people that think they are Christians because they come from a Christian family but thats not how it works. You have to accept Christ not drift into faith or be born into it. There are alot of atheists that arrived there by being too lazy to figure out what they believe. It can be an easy handle to cling onto when asked about your beliefs.
Just read "tolerance" below, now I see whats going on. nmOutWest
Jun 27, 2002 3:10 PM
how about this?DougSloan
Jul 2, 2002 6:13 AM