The “Pledge of Allegiance”

I was originally going to write an article about our losing the war in Afghanistan, but after exchanging some emails with a few folks in regards to losing that war I changed my mind. However, I do reserve the right to write that Afghanistan War article at a later date. Which obviously means that I will.

So today I share with you a couple of thoughts on our Pledge of Allegiance. Yup, that Pledge of Allegiance. But, before I do let me share these two thoughts:

  1. Words have meaning.
  2. History always has relevance.

The first pledge was actually written by Colonel George Thacher Balch in the 1800’s. Initially, his goal was the teaching of American principles and the development of rituals and practices that could foster a sense of American identity in foreign-born students who were now living in the United States. Later his goal changed simply to his dedication to the cause of inspiring greater patriotism in children. His pledge read,

“I give my heart and my hand to my country—one country, one language, one flag.”

An alternate historical version of the pledge reads,

“We give our heads and hearts to God and our country; one country, one language, one flag!”

But that all changed in the 1890’s with very interesting origins. In 1888 the Youth’s Companion magazine began a campaign to sell flags to all public schools. Not seeing enough flags being sold, the magazine designed a program to coincide with World’s Columbian Exposition, the 400th of Columbus in America anniversary (October 1892). The concept was a flag in every public school or each school classroom, students pledging allegiance to the flag along with a salute…a great way to sell a whole bunch of flags!

So the magazine hired Francis Bellamy to come up with a suitable pledge of allegiance along with an appropriate salute. And in mid-1892 he presented his pledge of allegiance to a national meeting of school superintendents. His pledge as presented,

“I pledge Allegiance to my Flag and to the Republic for which it stands, one Nation indivisible, with Liberty and Justice for all.”

And while reciting the pledge, children were to also perform the “Bellamy Salute.”

It was immediately and unanimously embraced and the National Education Association (NEA) provided the star power to ensure that all public schools embraced the new pledge and salute…along with making sure there were plenty of newly purchased flags as well. The rest is history. The current pledge is somewhat different than the original,

“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.”

Sounds really cool, eh? Very patriotic! Inspiring to be sure! Motivating as well!

Well let’s dig into some facts:

  • Colonel Balch was spot on, great little pledge, and for a great reason.
  • As for Francis Bellamy, father of our current pledge;
    • He was a Socialist
    • He was an Anti-Capitalist
    • He was a preacher defrocked for preaching against Capitalism
    • He preached that Jesus was a Socialist
    • He advocate for nationalist public education system (a socialist concept)
    • He advocated for nationalization of industry
    • He advocated for a strong central national government
    • He was an outspoken racist.
    • As for the “Bellamy Salute”…the exact same as the Nazi salute to Hitler.
  • As for the US public education system where the pledge of allegiance was to take root …the whole concept of US public education was introduced into the US by John Dewey. And Dewey was;
    • A rabid liberal and radical Progressive
    • A true believer in Marxism
    • An anti-Capitalist
    • Anti-Religion Humanist
    • A self-described “democratic socialist”
    • An advocate for collectivism
    • An advocate for a new social order
  • The NEA who first embraced the new pledge and salute;
    • Was founded in 1857
    • Founded primarily to influence politics
    • Is the largest labor union in the USA
    • Advocates liberalism and progressivism virtually exclusively
    • Backs Presidential political candidates from the Democrat Party exclusively
    • Actively advocates LGBTQ rights over individual rights

So I have to ask the question…Why would all these very closely associated forces join together to put into place a “Pledge of Allegiance”?

But first, let me point out for military personnel in regards to the Pledge of Allegiance, there is an notable exception:

  1. During military ceremonies, soldiers will not recite the Pledge of Allegiance.
  2. At official functions, social events, and sporting events, soldiers should:
    1. When in uniform, outdoors, stand at attention, remain silent, face the flag, and render the hand salute.
    2. When in uniform, indoors, stand at attention, remain silent, and face the flag.

Military personnel are only authorized to recite the pledge when in civilian clothes. And so I ask, why so?

And rather than pledge allegiance to a flag, why not pledge allegiance to our Constitution?

But most of all have you considered:

  1. Why did the USA adopt a Pledge of Allegiance developed by a socialist and racist who had lost his belief in religion?
  2. Why did the USA adopt a Pledge of Allegiance that was paid for by a company who simply wanted to sell more flags to public schools?
  3. Why did a nationalist socialist public education system so rabidly embrace a Pledge of Allegiance?
  4. Why did a liberal/progressive labor union promote a Pledge of Allegiance?

But one thing I know for sure…when you get a whole country pledging allegiance to a flag from early childhood it sure makes going to war a whole lot easier…doesn’t it? Way easier to whip up almost fervent excitement for everything patriotic…right?

Oh, sorry about that picture…it was a rally in Madison Square Garden, 1939. Yeah, an American Nazi rally.

There you go…you crazies out there can have a field day with that one!!  Go for it!!!

And now back to you reasonable and sane folks…I can’t help but ponder…

  • Our Founding Father were not loyalists, they were believers in people and their God-given rights, including the right to free speech…especially the right to dissent.
  • Our Founding Fathers never developed a pledge of allegiance. Actually, they encouraged us to challenge all things government and be loyal to rights, freedoms, and liberties. Well, there was one “pledge” they made and signed their names to; it was the Declaration of Independence…the exact opposite of a pledge of allegiance.
  • And then there is the nagging question…Why are military personnel in any official capacity not allowed to recite the Pledge of Allegiance? I would suggest that they have already taken an oath, “…I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign or domestic…”
  • Which would a person rather do; 1) pledge allegiance to a flag, 2) swear to defend the Constitution? Are they mutually exclusive? Are those two the same? And, is there a given priority if a person does both?

Just some things to ponder as our country crumbles around us for a whole host of reasons.

And you better ask…Why would I even write an article like this at this time?

Some of you will get it, others won’t. And some will go over the edge thinking they know what I am implying. I just want you to think about where we are as a country, how we got here, and what comes next. Without the first two, you will be blindsided by the last one.

Contact me with your questions/comments…


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2 thoughts on “The “Pledge of Allegiance”

  1. Quite thought-provoking… wasn’t at all aware of the military restrictions. Allegiance to the Constitution/ supporting and defending that Constitution against all enemies should have been our focus as a nation. We’ve been sliding downhill much longer than many imagine. Thanks for the post.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Life, and that is in it, has becomes really interesting and provoking when you scratch below the surface. And you nailed exactly what I wanted folks to do…THINK. We have to think about what is going on, how we are being acted upon, and what we will do about it when the time is right. AH

      Liked by 1 person

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