Pledge of Allegiance

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The Pledge of Allegiance was not written to coerce citizens of the United States. Its purpose was to create a statement of patriotism. Through its words, it states each American citizen’s respect for the republican form of government our Founders instilled, and loyalty to America, a country that is “indivisible.” While the separation of church and state is a key institute in maintaining a fair democratic government, certain traditions such as the Pledge of Allegiance, should be allowed in a society founded on the belief in monotheism. The Pledge was not written to defy the Constitution; rather, it was a statement of secular belief in our nation. Its author had no intention of violating the First Amendment. When the Pledge is recited in public places, no one person of any age is forced to violate their constitutionally guaranteed right to the freedom from and of religion. The Pledge of Allegiance should remain intact in the public arena -- for the fact that it helps citizens of the United States to remember essential principles for which this country was founded, such as “liberty and justice for all.” In more recent years, the Pledge controversy presented itself when Michael Newdow filed a lawsuit against Elk Grove Unified School District. The reasoning behind the lawsuit rested on his disagreement with a rule that make the recitation of the Pledge mandatory in a California public school district. In Elk Grove v. Newdow (1), Newdow’s Establishment Clause claim demanded that President Bill Clinton change the Pledge of Allegiance and omit the phrase “one Nation under God.” The Founding Fathers created the First Amendment which includes the Establishment Clause to “impose a number of restrictions on the federal government with respect to the civil liberties of the people, including freedom of religion, speech, press, assembly, and petition” (2). In Justice
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