Pennsylvania State Representative Under Fire for Refusing to Say Pledge of Allegiance

Pennsylvania State Representative Babette Josephs (D-Philadelphia) is getting a lot of flak tonight for refusing to say the Pledge of Allegiance during a House Committee meeting earlier today:

The drama unfolded at what was billed as a non-controversial House State Government Committee meeting Wednesday morning. Republican Chairman Daryl Metcalfe (R-Butler) asked Josephs to lead the group in the Pledge of Allegiance; a rather routine request that became anything but when Josephs refused.

“Based on my First Amendment rights and based on the fact that I really think it’s a prayer. I don’t pray in public,” she said as lawmakers were standing to recite the Pledge.

After an awkward moment, Metcalfe quickly called on another member to lead the group.

Afterward, Josephs was unapologetic. She said she was about 14 years old when Congress inserted the words ‘under God’ into the Pledge. She insists that makes it a prayer.

“How many years ago was 1954? I have not said the Pledge of Allegiance since and I will not say it into the future unless they take those words out and make it less of a prayer,” Josephs said.

Wow. It’s about damn time someone in a government role said that.

Metcalfe couldn’t believe it. He thinks that the Pledge is synonymous with patriotism:

“I think it is shocking that any elected official would not pledge allegiance to the flag,” Metcalfe said. “It’s a person’s right to not say the pledge, but I don’t believe anybody should be in elected office that holds that position and I think a majority of Americans wouldn’t elect somebody if they held that position.”

That’s bullshit. Saying the Pledge doesn’t make you any more patriotic than the rest of us who refuse to blindly pledge allegiance to a flag no matter what awful things our country does around the world (and to our own citizens). And, of course, there’s no reason to recite a pledge that suggests we are a nation “under God.”

What makes this an even more dickish move is that Metcalfe was fully aware Josephs doesn’t say the Pledge for the reasons she cited — but he asked her to do it anyway… presumably just to make her look bad in her final days in office (Josephs lost her primary months ago and will leave office at the end of this term).

This isn’t Josephs first Pledge of Allegiance battle. In 2001, the state House passed a bill on a 200 to 1 vote that would make students “recite the Pledge of Allegiance or sing the national anthem each day, and classrooms would have to display the American flag.” Josephs was the single dissenter:

“This is a burden on our children. It achieves nothing,” Josephs said. “We have schools in our state that don’t even have books. Let’s work on the books, not the flags.”

Looks like she was in the right then, just like she is now. That particular bill was later found unconstitutional.

(Thanks to Paul for the link!)

About Hemant Mehta

Hemant Mehta is the chair of Foundation Beyond Belief and a high school math teacher in the suburbs of Chicago. He began writing the Friendly Atheist blog in 2006. His latest book is called The Young Atheist's Survival Guide.

  • http://atheistlutheran.blogspot.com/ MargueriteF

    “… I think a majority of Americans wouldn’t elect somebody if they held that position.”

    Bullshit or not, I think the above statement is definitely true. Most Americans have been trained to reflexively suspect that if someone won’t say the Pledge (in full, including the “under God” part), they’re not really patriots, and are in fact probably Satan worshippers and secret disciples of Karl Marx.

    I agree that this was a dickish thing for Metcalfe to do. Bleah.

    • thirteenthirteen

      Agreed – I actually had a coworker tell me I’m not a real American because I wouldn’t say the pledge. Although the argument was completely stupid since, as an adult, when do I have the opportunity to say the pledge? No one has wanted me to say the pledge since I was sixth grade.

      • TheBlackCat

        Your coworker is right.  Do you know who also didn’t say the pledge?  George Washington!  Oh, wait….

        • Roxy

          Gee, I wonder WHY George didn’t say the Pledge?! Could it be… Maybe… Because…. he died in 1799 and the Pledge wasn’t written until 1892?! Yessssssss, that’s why! Although, I would think George woukd like the Pledge of Allegiance. He fought hard enough to help gain this country’s Freedom. Our flag is a Symbol of our Freedom. People who wear the flag pins are just showing how proud they are to be an American. They can do that, if they want to. Sheesh!

          • TheBlackCat

             

            Could it be… Maybe… Because…. he died in 1799 and the Pledge wasn’t written until 1892?!

            Yes, that was my whole point.

            Although, I would think George woukd like the Pledge of Allegiance. He fought hard enough to help gain this country’s Freedom.

            Yes, he fought to free us from exactly the sort of unquestioning obedience the pledge was intended to foster.  I think he would be among the first in line to oppose it.

            Also, you must recall he was a former officer for the British Empire, yet was willing to go against any oaths he took in that capacity, any oaths he took as a British subject.  Many in the colonies did.  So I doubt people who lived through a period of abandoning their existing allegiances would be all that trusting of oaths. 

            The constitution requires an oath to uphold the constitution, but no oath of allegiance.  People of that time were no strangers to such oaths, so I think it is telling that they didn’t require one.

            • TheBlackCat

               Another point: the whole idea behind the declaration of independence is that we don’t owe any sort of allegiance to our country, the country exists to support us, and if we feel it doesn’t we are free to leave or change it.  The very core concepts of the declaration go totally against any sort of pledge of allegiance.

  • http://www.agnostic-library.com/ma/ PsiCop

    Forget all the religious (or irreligious) reasons for not saying the Pledge of Allegiance. There are plenty of logical and non-metaphysical reasons not to do so.

    First is, how ridiculous is it to pledge anything to a flag? What can it possibly do for anyone other than flap in the breeze? I mean, seriously. WTF?

    Second, no one in the U.S. owes his or her “allegiance” to anyone or anything. The entire concept of “allegiance” is a relic of the feudal order of medieval Europe, in which one swore oaths of loyalty and fealty to one’s “liege” or overlord. The U.S. is not a feudal monarchy. None of us are serfs or vassals. We are, instead, citizens of a representative republic. The whole notion of “allegiance,” not to mention liege lords, featly, etc. have no place here.

    Listen, I love the Middle Ages as much as the next person. I wouldn’t have studied the period in college if I didn’t. But I appreciate what we have, now, and don’t really want to live in a medieval monarchy. Let’s not let our feudal past control our lives, not now, in the 21st century U.S. We need desperately to move past such things. Let’s do so, fercryinoutloud. Enough already.

    • Entertaining Doubts

      I totally agree, and thanks for the etymology lesson. Despite being a bit of a wordplay nerd, I never really thought about the relationship of “allegiance” to “liege,” but now I’ll be borrowing that reference anytime I need more ammo to argue against the odious “pledge.”

    • Trickster Goddess

       Also, what’s the deal with reciting the pledge so frequently? Do Americans’ oaths of fealty expire after just 24 hours? If you go several days without saying it, does that make you a lapsed patriot?

      • Anonymous Atheist

        Reciting the pledge frequently ‘only’ happens in K-12 school, in Girl Scouts/Boy Scouts, at some sports events, in politics, in court, and in the military. Most adults go about their day-to-day life not thinking about the pledge much at all, except at random special events they might attend a few times a year.

        • NewAtheist

          No, it doesn’t happen in the military. When you take the oath of enlistment, it is considered a deeper and more binding oath and thus supercedes the Pledge of Allegiance.
          “I do solemnly swear to support and defend the Constitution of the United States, against All enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; and that I will obey the orders of the President of the United States and the orders of the officers who are appointed over me, according to regulations and the Uniform Code of Military Justice.”

          http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_Armed_Forces_oath_of_enlistment

      • http://www.agnostic-library.com/ma/ PsiCop

        I wouldn’t know. I can’t say I’ve been any place where I’ve had to recite it frequently. The last time was last year at UConn women’s basketball games, but I just stood there saying nothing while everyone else recited the pledge.

    • skinnercitycyclist

       I am a teacher and I refuse to recite the pledge.  My reasoning rests primarily on the reasoning of Major ______ de Coverley.  But also, if anyone gives me crap about it, I tell them I pledged allegiance (swore an oath, actually) to uphold the Constitution when I joined the army in 1980.  That oath still stands as far as I am concerned. And most of these pledge chest-beaters have never been near the military.

      • PingEcho728

        As a former member of the United States Armed Forces I still proudly say the pledge of allegience despite the fact that the oath of enlistment I took (3 times since that’s how many times I reenlisted) still is binding on me but I say the pledge anyway because I love my country deeply and it’s just another way to demonstrate my love of country. I suspect the loyalty of anyone who won’t say the pledge and think anyone who holds a security clearance especially should be stripped of their clearance if they won’t say the pledge..can’t trust anyone who won’t say the pledge to not release classified information to hostile foreign governments or terrorist organizations. So this is one of those “pledge chest-beaters” as you called us who HAS been near the military..in fact I gave fourteen years of my life to the service in uniform. The fact that one woman, an elected official no less, won’t say it on the insane idea that “it’s a prayer” makes it laughable and infuriating at the same time. If you love your country you’ll say the pledge..if you won’t..then I would have to wonder how much stock anyone could put in a military person’s oath in the military. Could be empty lip-service for all I know.

        • TheBlackCat

           Right, because you were appointed dictator for life so you get to determine who does and does not “love your country”.

    • PingEcho728

      I would disagree. I think EVERY American owes allegience to the United States of America. It should be a condition of holding public office or trust because how can we be sure that someone who won’t say the pledge won’t sell out their country to it’s enemies? For all we know someone who won’t say the pledge is a traitor waiting for the opportunity to betray their country which could result in the loss of American lives if they provide aid or comfort to the many enemies of the United States. I would strongly recommend that the National Security Agency, Homeland Security and the FBI closely look at people who won’t say the pledge..bet that sooner or later that person will do something that will compromise national security or endanger civilian lives to aid the enemies of this country.

      • TheBlackCat

        Do you know anything about the constitution?  All
        people who hold public office or trust with the federal or state government ARE required to say an oath to
        that effect.  It is in the constitution:

        The
        Senators and Representatives before mentioned, and the Members of the
        several State Legislatures, and all executive and judicial Officers,
        both of the United States and of the several States, shall be bound by
        Oath or Affirmation, to support this Constitution; but no
        religious Test shall ever be required as a Qualification to any Office
        or public Trust under the United States.

        (emphasis added)   So Josephs already has pledged loyalty to the U.S. and pledged to uphold the constitution.

        Requiring
        people to recite the pledge is, by definition, a religious test, since
        they cannot say it honestly if they do not believe in God.  So again, despite the fact that you talk so much about loyalty to the U.S., you directly reject the constitution.

      • http://www.agnostic-library.com/ma/ PsiCop

        You appear to be confused about things. “Allegiance” is a specific legal term that does not apply to citizens of the U.S. The Constitution makes us citizens; we need not do anything in order to get it.

        As for “traitors,” that’s a completely different issue. In the Middle Ages there were plenty of people who “pledged ‘allegiance’” to their superiors, yet later betrayed them. Saying an oath of allegiance doesn’t make someone loyal. Treason is unacceptable in any context and at any time; however, pledges of allegiance can’t prevent it.

  • C Peterson

    Good for her. I’d say she’s a damn sight more patriotic than Metcalfe.

  • http://twitter.com/silo_mowbray Silo Mowbray

    What the fuck is it with this rampant bullshit jingoism in the U.S.? It amounts to lip service at best and douchecake camouflage at worst. There needs to be more politicians like Josephs, ones who don’t practice conspicuous flag-wrapping and Sky Fairy worship.

  • m6wg4bxw

    The flag of the United States of America has feelings. Pledge your allegiance!

    • m6wg4bxw

      I chose to email Representative Josephs to express my appreciation. I’m sure her contact avenues will flooded by enraged jingos, but I want her to know that some of us agree.

      Anyone interested can find her here: http://www.babette.org/

      • Matt O’Neal

         Thank you for posting this. I just emailed her as well.

      • Drew M.

        Email sent as well. Thanks for the link.

    • PingEcho728

      No..the flag doesn’t have feelings but those who have served in uniform and especially those who fought, bled and died for what the flag represents..the United States of America..the greatest country ever seen in human history might just care about people disrespecting their sacrifice by not saying the pledge. How can we trust the loyalty to America from people who won’t say the pledge? I wouldn’t trust ‘em and if I owned a business I wouldn’t hire them either.

      • http://www.last.fm/user/m6wg4bxw m6wg4bxw

        I don’t consider not pledging allegiance to the flag, or the country it represents, to be disrespectful to the sacrifices made by those who have served in said country’s military. If they, or you, expect me to trade-in my freedom of thought and action for unconditional jingoism, then you’ve made a mistake.

        I’m not sure about the “we” in your question, but none of you can’t trust me to be loyal to the USA. It certainly isn’t loyal to me. I will support it according to the merits of its endeavors. Do you seriously think loyalty can be measured by pledge recitation?

        I tend to distrust people who say things like, “[…] the United States of America..the greatest country ever seen in human history […]”

  • lokicat3

    The Pledge originated in the Hitler Salute.  This history has been hidden but there’s info to back this up.  Rather than the raised outstretched right arm, the right hand (in the US) was to be placed over the heart.  http://forgottenhistoryblog.com/the-official-american-flag-salute-used-to-be-a-hitler-salute/

    This was Post War 1940s and 1950s.  I remember having to say the pledge with “under God” added in high school and not saying them.  The Pledge is mind control.  It forces conformity by shunning and humiliating anyone who says know.  In Germany, even though many dissenters as children knew the Hitler Salute was wrong, many of them gave in, in time, and said it like everyone else.  It destroyed something in the self to be this persecuted.  Bruno Bettleheim has an essay that’s out of print called the Hitler Salute that tells the story of one German school girl who ends up knuckling under.  It’s harrowing to read.  A child’s psyche is a fragile thing.  I’ve looked everywhere but can’t find the original essay with this story. 

    • Philbert

      Your own link says that the pledge and the Bellamy salute were invented by a socialist in 1892. It can hardly have originated from the “Hitler Salute”.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_JBAMPHNDKNSKDNVTY3VRYGWMYQ Jack
  • Stev84

    They want a mindless loyalty pledge. Something that’s better known from fascist nations.

  • bigred

    Someone commented on FB that she voted for “Year of the Bible”.  I hope that’s no the case.

    • Matt O’Neal

       I think the “Year of the Bible” one passed unanimously so I’m sure she did. To her defence though, I think it was wrapped in a bunch of fluff that several members didn’t actually realize it was in the resolution. And many said afterwards that they regretted voting for it.

      On another note, why does this spell-checker think defense is spelled with a c?

      • Artor

        I defenced a pasture once. The old posts were rotten.

      • Stev84

         Seems like your spell checker is set to British English

    • Artor

      It says in the article above that she was the sole dissenter on that one. Last paragraph.

      • Stev84

        That was a different vote

  • http://friendlyatheist.com Richard Wade

    Good for her.  Metcalfe’s dickish move to try to embarrass Josephs about the pledge has no effect on her, because since she’s leaving office, she’s in the position of having nothing to lose. Beware an enemy who has nothing to lose.  Avoid putting an opponent into that position if you can.

    The addition of the prayer into the pledge was less than a year old when my kindergarten teacher started teaching it to us. I remember hearing an odd awkwardness in how she presented it, as if it was unfamiliar to her. The rephrasing itself has always seemed awkward. “One nation, indivisible” is a simple emphatic restatement. adding “under God” into the middle of that never seemed to fit. It made “indivisible” sound like the dangling, added-on part.

  • TiltedHorizon

    “It’s a person’s right to not say the pledge, but I don’t believe anybody should be in elected office that holds that position… ”

    The quintessential politician, Metcalfe acknowledges the freedom to not recite the pledge while simultaneously wishing to penalize anyone who exercises those freedoms; all without seeing the hypocrisy of that statement.

    What a turd.

    • HughInAz

      I’m convinced that a huge percentage of Merkins, for all their bleating about freedom, have no fucking clue what it is. They think it means symbols – stars and stripes, baseball, apple pie, whatever – and rituals – the pledge of allegiance, politicians ending every speech with god bless American, and so on. The idea that freedom means freedom to dissent and think for yourself seems totally alien to them. Rugged individualists, my ass.

      • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_6O7TY36KKR4RN2JRA7MLV6LEZY Stan Dalone

        As a native citizen who’s spent his whole life in the US (excepting travel), I think you hit the nail on the head with that one.  Civics isn’t taught or valued in this country, and as a result the population doesn’t understand why we have the rights we have, or why they’re important.

        • c smythe

           bible thumping bullshit contributes to the problem

  • http://www.youtube.com/user/godvlogger?feature=results_main GodVlogger

     If they ask her again, maybe she could recite is the CORRECT way, i.e. withOUT the “under god” part!

    • NoDoubtAboutIt

      Just change “under” to “fuck”.  Problem solved.

  • Willy Occam

    “Drop out of school before your mind rots from exposure to our
    mediocre educational system. Forget about the Senior Prom and go to the
    library and educate yourself if you’ve got any guts. Some of you like
    pep rallies and plastic robots who tell you what to read. Forget I
    mentioned it…. Rise for the flag salute.”  — Frank Zappa, Freak Out!

  • Matt O’Neal

    I’d never realized that allegiance had its roots in pledging your fealty to a liege lord. Thanks for the lesson PsiCop. But like many words, I think the current definition doesn’t mean exactly the same thing as its root suggests. Or maybe it does, but we just don’t equate it to such.

    I’ve never had a problem pledging my allegiance to this country. Jingoist or not, I am grateful that I live here, as I’m sure I would be proud to be Canadian if I was born there. And while I’ve always said the pledge when appropriate, I just skip over the prayerful part. I realize we have a long way to go before this country is truly inclusive. But I still love this country. And am thankful for the current atheist movement and writers like Richard and Hemant and their readers — who are doing a lot more than they probably realize for the growing community of non-believers.

  • HughInAz

    I’ve always thought there was something surreal about millions of children starting every day by chanting robotically in unison about how free they are.

    • TheBlackCat

       I’m stealing this.

    • c smythe

      ‘tiz how it is done in N Korea

  • Tergiversator_Maximus

    Metcalfe is about as much of a crypto-fascist as you’ll find anywhere.  He’s also not a big fan of immigrants, foreigners, and anything that doesn’t involve god, guns, and people like him.

  • Georgina

    “I pledge allegiance to the United States of America, and to
    the republic for which I stand, one nation under the Constitution, indivisible,
    with liberty and justice for all. ”

    As an atheist forced to sing so-called ‘hymns’ every morning at school, I and many others, learned to just replace the bits we disagreed with.
    “While shepherds washed their socks” anyone?

  • Ned Ludd

    I used to go to horse racing when it was in  season in my area.  Before the first race they would play some “patriotic” music over the loudspeaker.  Everyone but me stood up. I got some shit for that. I got even more at baseball games when I never stood up. I told people it was none of their business.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Sandy-Kokch/100000074576649 Sandy Kokch

    Whilst I fully agree with the good politician’s position here, I have more sympathy for the reason for refusal to repeat the Pledge that brave young Will Phillips gave when as a 10 year old he sat his ass down in class and refused to play along any more:

    It says “With Liberty And Justice For ALL”……and in a country that treats gay people as second class citizens who are denied the right to marriage and all the legal rights and benefits that go along with that status, the damn thing means nothing at all. Its a hypocritical lie.

    Of course the Republicans would rather your situation was like that of Thailand where I currently live. Refusal to stand during the national anthem at a public event (even in the cinema) gets you convicted and sent to prison. Kids who refuse to repeat the pledge here get kicked out of school and sent to a juvie.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Sandy-Kokch/100000074576649 Sandy Kokch

    Whilst I fully agree with the good politician’s position here, I have more sympathy for the reason for refusal to repeat the Pledge that brave young Will Phillips gave when as a 10 year old he sat his ass down in class and refused to play along any more:

    It says “With Liberty And Justice For ALL”……and in a country that treats gay people as second class citizens who are denied the right to marriage and all the legal rights and benefits that go along with that status, the damn thing means nothing at all. Its a hypocritical lie.

    To the Republican it is more important to parrot the meaningless words than think about them and what they mean. It is more important to wrap your ass in the flag and wear the rosy tinted specs than step back and think “Hang on….” and then do something to make the words mean what they say.

    That last sentence of the Pledge should be your national motto, for there is no finer sentiment a nation can espouse.

    But till it actually means what it says, it is just so much ashes and dust in the mouths of hypocrites and liars.

    Of course the Republicans would rather your situation was like that of Thailand where I currently live. Refusal to stand during the national anthem at a public event (even in the cinema) gets you convicted and sent to prison. Kids who refuse to repeat the pledge here get kicked out of school and sent to a juvie.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Sandy-Kokch/100000074576649 Sandy Kokch

    Whilst I fully agree with the good politician’s position here, I have more sympathy for the reason for refusal to repeat the Pledge that brave young Will Phillips gave when as a 10 year old he sat his ass down in class and refused to play along any more:

    It says “With Liberty And Justice For ALL”……and in a country that treats gay people as second class citizens who are denied the right to marriage and all the legal rights and benefits that go along with that status, the damn thing means nothing at all. Its a hypocritical lie.

    To the Republican it is more important to parrot the meaningless words than think about them and what they mean. It is more important to wrap your ass in the flag and wear the rosy tinted specs than step back and think “Hang on….” and then do something to make the words mean what they say.

    That last sentence of the Pledge should be your national motto, for there is no finer sentiment a nation can espouse.

    But till it actually means what it says, it is just so much ashes and dust in the mouths of hypocrites and liars.

    Of course the Republicans would rather your situation was like that of Thailand where I currently live. Refusal to stand during the national anthem at a public event (even in the cinema) gets you convicted and sent to prison. Kids who refuse to repeat the pledge here get kicked out of school and sent to a juvie.

    • PingEcho728

      I’m curious..you mentioned the “right to marriage” but where in the Bill of Rights does it mention the right to marry? Gay people are not treated as second class citizens..all those rights mentioned in the Bill of Rights..and the unalienable right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness (not necessarily the attainment of it) are afforded to American citizens whatever their sexual feelings may be. There is liberty and justice for all. If someone refuses to stand (what harm can be done to anyone for simply doing that) then they SHOULD be at the very least thrown out of the event (but at least refund their money since they didn’t get to see the rest of the game).  Authorities should look closely at the parents of kids who won’t say the pledge..might be some disloyalty in the parents teaching their children to be disloyal to their country or worse..to hate their country.

      • TheBlackCat

        You do realize there have been other amendments to the U.S. constitution besides the Bill of Rights, right? 

        Specifically the 14th amendment, specifically “nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.” 

        And you do realize that just because a right is not in the Bill of Rights, doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist, right?  I guess you never read the ninth amendment, which is part of the Bill of Rights: “The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.”

  • Ari

    What silly, jingoistic nonsense. About as silly as wearing said flag on your lapel. I refused once in elementary school and was sent to the vice principal’s office. If conformity doesn’t make you follow the flock, some good stern authoritarian discipline should do the trick. That’s what forcing children to recite a prayer to a piece of rag teaches them.

  • Tainda

    I don’t know how many people I have argued with about “under god” being in the original pledge.

    They see what they want to see or know what they want to know.

  • Amakudari

    I think it is shocking that any elected official would not pledge allegiance to the flag,

    It’s a fucking flag. I don’t pray a prayer I disagree with to a piece of cloth to appease cryptofascists who can’t make it ten words into the Bill of Rights.

    Does anything more need to be said?

  • Baal

    Saying the pledge is part cultural badge wearing and part magical invocation.  Magic is silly (though fun if done by a magician on stage) for grown adults to do in public.  Publicly touted  fidelity has always made me question those who do it.  When you say, “I’m not a witch!” or “I’m really really a good American!” I think, why do you need to reassure me of the usual defaults?

  • Gus Snarp

    This woman is awesome. The world needs more people like Babette Josephs.

    • PingEcho728

      The world does need more people like Babette Josephs..in Gitmo and stripped of their American citizenship. How can we trust someone to not sell us out to our enemies around the world (and they are legion) if they won’t pledge allegience to the United States..and do they have something against liberty and justice for all?? Dissent is all well and good..and perfectly ok in my book BUT even those who dissent, most of them anyway, are loyal to this country and wouldn’t harm it but those who won’t say the pledge..I wouldn’t trust them any further than I could throw the Statue of Liberty. I’d expect them to throw America under the bus and sell us out to our enemies either for financial gain or for some other motive.

      • TheBlackCat

        Let me get this straight, you are for “liberty and justice for all”…by arresting people who exercise their freedom of speech?  How does that make any sense whatsoever? 

        I am much more scared of someone who claims to love liberty and justice but wants to arrest anyone who says something they don’t like or won’t say something they do like.

        I also take it you didn’t read the OP.  She was perfectly happy to pledge allegiance to the U.S., perfectly happy with liberty and justice for all, and in fact has said the original version of the pledge.  What she didn’t want to do was recite the prayer part.

  • http://www.facebook.com/kerekes.david Kerekes Dávid

    Can somebody explain to me why is being patriotic a good thing in the first place? I’ve always found it puzzling how even well educated left-leaning americans refer to it as an inherently good thing without any further explanation. I think somebody with the same attitude would be ridiculed in any liberal or leftist european group.

  • Brian Macker

    My father got fired from his college for supporting some students who refused to say the pledge at Adirondack Community College in the 60′s.

  • c smythe

    Woe unto you ‘mercans under the parasitic christian thumb.
    Y’all gonna have to stand up to these monsters. You thank the first civil war was bad . . . just imagine what an army of bible thumpers will do to you . . .

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_O73IAH2HI5SU4A462JAXST77GY Malcolm

    Idiots all!!

  • PingEcho728

    This woman is unqualified to hold elected office ANYWHERE in the United States of America. People who will not say the pledge are, in my humble opinion, potential traitors to the Constitution of the United States and cannot be trusted with the influence that comes with elected office. Inserting the words Under God does not in any way, shape or form make it a prayer. A prayer would have to involve asking a deity (whichever one happens to believe in) to do something and the pledge NOWHERE invokes a deity to do anything. Anyone who sees the words of the pledge should see this is self-evident. ‘I pledge allegience 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.’ So where is a petition to God (of any sort) in those words? Personally the pledge should serve as a tool for the Patriot Act to round up those potential traitors in our midst who may, at some point in time, work against the interests of the United States. She should be on the first flight to Gitmo because as I said I consider a woman like this to be at the very least a potential traitor and untrustworthy. How can anyone trust someone to be an elected official if they will not demonstrate their allegience to the United States of America?? She can not say the pledge but should be immediately disqualified for public office. In fact, I would push a Constitutional Amendment to make saying the pledge a condition of holding ANY office in the land..if someone can’t say it how can we trust them??

    • TheBlackCat

      The problem isn’t people like her, it is people like you who claim to love the U.S. and the constitution but express outright hatred of the U.S., the constitution, and everything they stand for.

      Besides, if someone was really planning to sell out the U.S., the last thing they would want to do is draw attention to themselves.  Josephs was doing the exact opposite, taking a stand to uphold the very things that has made the U.S. so great, our freedoms.  I trust someone like that much more than someone who just mumbles a rote phrase over and over and over, and I trust someone like you who hates freedom less than anyone.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_JGE5HJ3ZVF542AGKIJPPVKQA5Y M Talam

    We are also unapologetic as well – stop representing your constituency and resign. TYVM!  Go pledge something else in another country.

    • Ari

      And who are you referring to as “we?”

  • Ryan Fenske

    PsiCop, you’re my hero.
    As for the rest of you….
    Just look at yourselves.
    “If you’re unwilling to pledge your allegience to our flag, who’s to say you won’t sell out our country… blah blah blah!”
    I would continue to rag on your ignorance as to how communism/socialism could actually be much better and much more productive for the world in general….but I won’t.
    I’ll just sit here and continue to let you believe in the capitalism (Monarchy in disguise) you so dearly love. While those at the top continue to increase the gap between you and them, then turn around and use their power (money) to put you right where they need you. (Slavery)
    So go ahead and pledge allegience to a ‘flag’.
    God is watching.


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