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February 12, 2013
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The Pledge of Allegiance

:iconwitwitch:
witwitch Featured By Owner Feb 12, 2013  Student Writer
Do you think it's OK to make kids recite the pledge of allegiance before they're even old enough to understand what they're doing?

Personally, I don't. I think it's creepy and wrong to force kids to accept their country as the greatest before they can form their own opinions about it first. I think the pledge is something that should be taught in high school, after kids have learned about American history and modern civics (not that most American schools would do a good job of teaching these things, but I'm imagining a best case scenario here).

A person should pledge allegiance to their country because they love their country, not because an authority figure tells them to. It means something more when it comes out of free will and independent thought, rather than being a reflexive action trained in to you by years of practice during your most naive, open minded, innocent and accepting years.

Video highly related, and an entertaining watch: [link]
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:iconhgwizard:
HGWizard Featured By Owner Mar 5, 2013  Hobbyist Artist
From my experience in school, it was optional. A lot of kids I knew refused to do the pledge and suffered no consequence.

I haven't done it since high school, I had to stop for a minute and see if I even remembered it haha
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:icongigapipen1407:
GigaPipen1407 Featured By Owner Mar 2, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Do you think it's OK to make kids recite the pledge of allegiance before they're even old enough to understand what they're doing?Personally, I don't. I think it's creepy and wrong to force kids to accept their country as the greatest before they can form their own opinions about it first.
As if little kids are so greatly concerned about politics and world affairs and which country is best. And you act as if reciting a few lines brainwashes children, as if they can't POSSIBLY change their minds later. At least two of my friends hate living here, and they recite the pledge along with everyone else.

I think the pledge is something that should be taught in high school, after kids have learned about American history and modern civics (not that most American schools would do a good job of teaching these things, but I'm imagining a best case scenario here).
Same thing I said above.

A person should pledge allegiance to their country because they love their country, not because an authority figure tells them to. It means something more when it comes out of free will and independent thought, rather than being a reflexive action trained in to you by years of practice during your most naive, open minded, innocent and accepting years.
The Pledge of Allegiance isn't some sort of binding contract. It's just showing some respect for your country as one of it's citizens (or at the very least someone who lives there under its laws). I think you're going off the assumption that teaching kids to recite the Pledge at a young age is somehow brainwashing them to one way of thinking, i.e. that their country is good, the best, etc.
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:iconkinoc-kun:
Kinoc-Kun Featured By Owner Feb 21, 2013  Hobbyist Photographer
This is because of those two little words, isn't it? :disbelief:
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:iconairthir:
Airthir Featured By Owner Feb 18, 2013  Student Photographer
All of the kids who are in schools reciting the pledge of allegiance are American citizens (with a few exceptions).

No, their country isn't great. But it's their country. They live there, they abide by its laws, benefit from its social programs and protections, and grow up in houses with their parents or legal guardians paying the government taxes.

It's not as though young children are expected to perform military service, or do much of anything else that benefits their country-- not until they are old enough to choose to. They don't sing praises to the government, as children in, say, North Korea do.

Any working country requires allegiance from its citizens. It requires its citizens to abide its laws and pay its taxes. For the average citizen, that doesn't matter much-- most of us don't really get a chance to conspire against our motherland, even if we want to, and if we do want to, the pledge of allegiance we said in first grade doesn't stop us.

What would a nation do if its citizenry wasn't loyal? What if you've got a room full of high school kids who've learned all about their country and decide nope, not gonna happen?

Allegiance is the basic expectation of a nation, and the least we can give in return to our government. I'm not patriotic, I'm not particularly enthralled with America's current state of affairs. But the pledge of allegiance isn't that big of a deal, and, federally, as ruled by the Supreme Court, it is not required in public schools. This is true for any public school in the United States-- perhaps you weren't aware of it in your school, but it's a federal decision, not a school board one.
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:iconluminousbrink:
luminousBrink Featured By Owner Feb 17, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
I think it's wrong to force kids to pledge to the flag. All during my years of school I did it because I was used to it. Once I got to high school I stopped saying it but now I still stand and put my hand on my chest to be respectful. Every school day I watch some people in my class still say it, but to be honest most of my class is quiet.
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:iconprincess-amy:
Princess-Amy Featured By Owner Feb 16, 2013  Hobbyist Photographer
The pledge of allegiance is an abomination.  You should all scrap it and go back to paying homage and respect the the queen of the UK.
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:iconwitwitch:
witwitch Featured By Owner Feb 17, 2013  Student Writer
:lol:
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:iconjeysie:
Jeysie Featured By Owner Feb 16, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
:lol: OK, this was actually pretty funny.
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:iconprincess-amy:
Princess-Amy Featured By Owner Feb 16, 2013  Hobbyist Photographer
Thankyou !
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:iconkalinka-shadows:
Kalinka-Shadows Featured By Owner Feb 16, 2013
The US Pledge as of the 1954 version is illegal under the US Constitution, it promotes the worship of the Sectarian god Yahweh in having 'Under God' in the Pledge.
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:iconultimateridley:
UltimateRidley Featured By Owner Feb 16, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Three things:

  • You are not required to recite it, and you can give any reason for not doing so if asked. Teachers in American public schools tell their students this at the beginning of every school year.
    • Not reciting it might get you some funny looks, and your parents might force you to do it when you are super-young, but those are different problems entirely.

  • The pledge itself is rather hollow, in that any propaganda it may try to instill doesn't hold much meaning. Many of the words in it are too advanced for any small child to truly wrap their mind around it, anyway. (It took me until fourth grade to realize "indivisible" meant "cannot be divided" rather than a funny way to say "invisible")

  • Most American kids growing up tend to think of it as "that thing we recite every morning before first period". They don't attach any real meaning to it. I know I didn't. It was just something we waded through, as part of our usual school morning routine. The fact that we have so many Americans (who grew up with it themselves) believe that it is indoctrination shows that it is not, in fact, indoctrination, because it certainly didn't turn them into mindless patriotic robots.
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:iconwitwitch:
witwitch Featured By Owner Feb 16, 2013  Student Writer
You are not required to recite it, and you can give any reason for not doing so if asked. Teachers in American public schools tell their students this at the beginning of every school year.

This depends largely on where you go to school. While this may be true in some schools and districts, it is not true in every school or district. In some schools and districts it is not optional; there are a few people who have pointed this out in the thread.

It certainly wasn't optional in my own elementary school.

Most American kids growing up tend to think of it as "that thing we recite every morning before first period". They don't attach any real meaning to it. I know I didn't.

This is one of the other problems it causes. Imagine what your reaction would have been if the pledge was introduced to you much later?
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:iconwhitedarkdragon2:
WhiteDarkDragon2 Featured By Owner Feb 14, 2013
It's brainwashing, BREAK THE MOLD PEOPLE! :0
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:iconjackmolotov3:
JackMolotov3 Featured By Owner Feb 13, 2013  Hobbyist Photographer
"Do you think it's OK to make kids recite the pledge of allegiance before they're even old enough to understand what they're doing?"

its a mantra. its harmless. It really doesn't do anything to inhibit thinking, or questioning it at a later date. Or at least it depends on the force used to get someone to recite it. Of all the dumb things that authority figures did in my schools growing up, that really matter, making me recite the pledge of allegiance was not one of them.

Like the argument of adding or removing god, its a red herring not even worth the time for serious debate.
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:iconjeysie:
Jeysie Featured By Owner Feb 13, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
I feel very annoyed that conservatives have given patriotism such a bad name that liberals treat it like a dirty word and consider it "indoctrination", as opposed to reclaiming the right for liberals who want to improve the country to be considered patriotic.
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:icontotally-dead:
Totally-dead Featured By Owner Feb 16, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
(Completely unrelated: Where were you arguing about businesses being allowed to discrminate against tattooed people?)
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:iconjeysie:
Jeysie Featured By Owner Feb 16, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
Business aren't allowed to discriminate against tattooed people to begin with.
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:icontotally-dead:
Totally-dead Featured By Owner Feb 16, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
But you seemed to argue they should be allowed to?
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:iconjeysie:
Jeysie Featured By Owner Feb 16, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
Nope.
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:icontotally-dead:
Totally-dead Featured By Owner Feb 16, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
The contrary seemed to be implied.
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:iconjeysie:
Jeysie Featured By Owner Feb 16, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
Only because you're operating from the axiom that not being allowed to do whatever you want whenever you want is ever discrimination.
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:icontotally-dead:
Totally-dead Featured By Owner Feb 16, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
Not the message most of your posts put forward.
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(1 Reply)
:iconwitwitch:
witwitch Featured By Owner Feb 16, 2013  Student Writer
Here: [link]
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:icontotally-dead:
Totally-dead Featured By Owner Feb 16, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
Thank you.
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:iconwitwitch:
witwitch Featured By Owner Feb 17, 2013  Student Writer
You're welcome.
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:iconwitwitch:
witwitch Featured By Owner Feb 14, 2013  Student Writer
Good thing this thread isn't about patriotism being bad. Patriotism can be a good thing. It just depends on whether the person who has it loves their country and wants to help better it, or "loves" their country in the way that they want things to stay the same, even if that means suffering, because wanting change gets interpreted as hating it.
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:iconjeysie:
Jeysie Featured By Owner Feb 14, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
Considering the entire thread is about how it's supposedly bad to have kids recite the Pledge of Allegiance "before they're old enough to understand what they're doing", yes, this thread feels more like about patriotism being bad, especially considering some of the arguments people here (and on an FB post the Being Liberal page coincidentally made the other day) that it amounts to "indoctrination" and other ills.

I mean, let's examine this.

"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."

...it's like, OK, so... why do you think it's bad for someone say that? Because they shouldn't be expected to feel loyal to their country? Because they shouldn't think we should stand together, or shouldn't think we should have liberty and justice for all? The only disputable part to me is "Under God", but that's a different dispute than not saying it altogether. Most atheists/agnostics just omit that part rather than not saying the Pledge at all.

The only way I can make sense of you saying the Pledge of Allegiance is bad is if you're against the concept of patriotism.

I'm proud to be an American. I was proud to say the Allegiance as a child. It doesn't mean I'm a warmongering US supremacist or whichever. And nowhere in the Pledge is that required. Hell, maybe if more people considered themselves American first, and liberal/conservative/black/white/Irish/Asian/Italian/whatever second, we might all get along better in this country. You can pretend people of other races and religions and factions are Them and The Other, but you can't do it if you acknowledge first that they're fellow Americans and we're all in this together.

Aside: That's another thing that bugs me, too. We're seriously the only country where being American isn't considered a proper nationality/ethnicity. Do people walk around calling themselves, say, Italian-Australian or Irish-Canadian or whatever? I'm not Irish-American, Portuguese-American, Québécois-American, etc., even though I have all those things in my ancestry. I wouldn't even feel right making any claim to my Native American ancestry. I consider myself just plain old American, or maybe Massachusite-American if I want to be specific, since being from Massachusetts has had far more influence on me than any country or tribe in my ancestry. Why is so rare to just consider yourself American, or associated with being a Southern redneck at best or a white supremacist at worst?
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:iconcouchycreature:
CouchyCreature Featured By Owner Feb 27, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
'one Nation under God, indivisible...'

So why are so many people petitioning the white house to seperate their state from the rest of the US? Seems even many conservatives don't believe in what they pledge.
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:iconjeysie:
Jeysie Featured By Owner Mar 1, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
In my case, it's because there's going to be people who are going to refuse to honor that edict and try to work together for a common cause. So you can either continue to attempt to futilely negotiate, continue to let them stand in the way of progress for the rest of us, or accept reality and let them go where they'll be much happier and you'll no longer have their roadblocks to deal with.

No doubt the lower echelon conservatives feel the same way about us.
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:iconwitwitch:
witwitch Featured By Owner Feb 15, 2013  Student Writer
"thread feels more like about patriotism being bad"

"Feels". I thought you were supposed to be literal and logical, =Jeysie?

When I say something, I say what I mean, and I mean what I say. I don't imply things for people to jump to crazy conclusions to. If you want to argue about this, argue with someone who actually thinks patriotism is bad.

The only way I can make sense of you saying the Pledge of Allegiance is bad is if you're against the concept of patriotism.

But I'm not against patriotism. So there must be a different reason that you haven't considered . . . like the reason I gave in my OP, maybe? :lol:
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:iconjeysie:
Jeysie Featured By Owner Feb 15, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
""Feels". I thought you were supposed to be literal and logical, =Jeysie?"

So, which is it? I'm bad when I definitively state how I interpret someone's words is correct, but equally bad when I try to be nice and allow that something is my interpretation and allow you to give you an explanation of whether I'm right or not?

So I guess basically, whatever I say will always be bad and evil and wrong unless I agree with you?

"When I say something, I say what I mean, and I mean what I say."

Then explain to me how I got wrong what you meant. But hey, sure sucks ass when someone gets wrong what you meant to say and you have to correct yourself, doesn't it? Almost like getting a taste of your own medicine, hey?

"So there must be a different reason that you haven't considered . . . like the reason I gave in my OP, maybe?"

You mean the reason I spent my entire post considering and debunking? Yeah, I totes didn't consider the reason I spent my entire post considering and explaining how it just doesn't hold together.

"I think it's creepy and wrong to force kids to accept their country as the greatest before they can form their own opinions about it first."

"..it's like, OK, so... why do you think it's bad for someone say that? Because they shouldn't be expected to feel loyal to their country? Because they shouldn't think we should stand together, or shouldn't think we should have liberty and justice for all? The only disputable part to me is "Under God", but that's a different dispute than not saying it altogether. Most atheists/agnostics just omit that part rather than not saying the Pledge at all."

As in, I already debunked your reason by one, proving that the Pledge in no way asks kids to force them to think their country is the greatest, and two, asking what part of the Pledge, exactly, someone is supposed to be "forming their own opinion about".

But I guess I can add to the forum personal dictionary that "directly considered and dismissed with a full explanation" magically becomes "didn't consider" solely because I disagreed. Kind of like how "directly addressed" magically becomes "ignored" if I disagree, and "acknowledged but rebutted" magically becomes "didn't acknowledge" if I disagree.

In short: I'm always bad/wrong in how I do things unless I agree with you.
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:iconwitwitch:
witwitch Featured By Owner Feb 15, 2013  Student Writer
In other words, the words in the pledge are irrelevant to my line of reasoning, it's the act of pledging itself that I am concerned with. I think pledging allegiance to a country should come from free will and, importantly, from an informed mind.

That means I think patriots should be, like, educated and stuff, and not blindly following their country as a reflexive action. Gosh, I guess wanting educated patriots must make me hate patriotism, huh?
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:iconwitwitch:
witwitch Featured By Owner Feb 15, 2013  Student Writer
I'm bad when I definitively state how I interpret someone's words is correct

You did no such thing. You didn't consider all of the alternatives.

As in, I already debunked your reason by one

There is an alternative reason you did not consider: these kids are being told to pledge allegiance to a country before they know anything about it. Like I have already stated in my OP, I think allegiance should come voluntarily, from free will, because it means more that way.

So, no, you didn't "debunk" anything. You put words in my mouth and ignored parts of my OP. Good job.
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:iconjeysie:
Jeysie Featured By Owner Feb 15, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
Basically, I think you're one, turning the Pledge into something it isn't, and two, being way, way, WAY too fucking idealistic.
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:iconwitwitch:
witwitch Featured By Owner Feb 15, 2013  Student Writer
You're allowed to think that if you like. :shrug:
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(1 Reply)
:iconjeysie:
Jeysie Featured By Owner Feb 15, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
"You did no such thing. You didn't consider all of the alternatives."

:facepalm: Reading comprehension, do you have it?

"these kids are being told to pledge allegiance to a country before they know anything about it."

And? How is it bad to expect to be loyal to the country you live in and are a citizen of? Is it preferable that kids grow up thinking it's OK to hate their country and its citizens and communities? That's dangerous behavior waiting to happen..

When you have Americans growing up thinking it's not expected to be loyal to their country, you don't get educated, conscientious people who are loyal enough to change the country's flaws from the inside because they understand their fellow citizens are still their brethren even when they're being dolts. You get the likes of Timothy McVeigh who view their fellow Americans as the enemy or collateral damage.

This country is divided enough without encouraging it further by not even at least giving lip-service to the idea of being all in this together.

"That means I think patriots should be, like, educated and stuff, and not blindly following their country as a reflexive action."

Because of course only educated people should love their country?

"Gosh, I guess wanting educated patriots must make me hate patriotism, huh?"

Not pledging allegiance doesn't magically produce educated patriots. In this day and age of crazy rebellious anti-government NRA members and doomsday preppers, it's more likely to encourage anti-American psychonuts.
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:iconwitwitch:
witwitch Featured By Owner Feb 15, 2013  Student Writer
Not pledging allegiance doesn't magically produce educated patriots.

I never claimed it did. What is your fascination with pulling these things out of thin air?

I claimed, multiple times in this thread, that educated patriots are produced by learning about American history, civics, and current events. Not by magic as you claim that I believe.

Let me quote you the part of my OP that you are ignoring:

I think the pledge is something that should be taught in high school, after kids have learned about American history and modern civics (not that most American schools would do a good job of teaching these things, but I'm imagining a best case scenario here).

A person should pledge allegiance to their country because they love their country, not because an authority figure tells them to. It means something more when it comes out of free will and independent thought, rather than being a reflexive action trained in to you by years of practice during your most naive, open minded, innocent and accepting years.


This should explain to you what I believe and why, as I have plainly stated it.

First you tell me I am against patriotism, when I explained that I am not. Then you keep telling me why you believe I am against it when I have already explained that I think patriotism = good.

What are you trying to prove? Why is it so hard for you to accept that you're jumping to radical conclusions and putting words in my mouth when I have explained to you, in clear language, that I do not think patriotism is bad?

If you want to argue about whether patriotism is good or bad, go argue with someone who disagrees with you.
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(1 Reply)
:iconmgonzales041090:
mgonzales041090 Featured By Owner Feb 13, 2013  Student Traditional Artist
Shut the fuck up you Communist!
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:iconjeysie:
Jeysie Featured By Owner Feb 13, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
:iconnouplz:
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:iconmgonzales041090:
mgonzales041090 Featured By Owner Feb 13, 2013  Student Traditional Artist
D:
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:iconxpaintthestarsx:
XPaintTheStarsX Featured By Owner Feb 13, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
Every man for himself.
If they want to, let them. But only when they are old enough to make their own decisions.
I'm british and this would be like asking us to swear on the bible that we will only accept who is in Buckingham Palace as our 'Leader'.
Personally, f*ck the queen, f*ck every alliance on this planet for all I care. End of the day, I'm me. I'll do as I want to do and follow who I want. Simple eh!
The only people I salute, are those who have given their lives to protect the fact I have my freedom to do as I wish.
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:iconactsofart:
ActsofArt Featured By Owner Feb 13, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
No, it's indoctrination. And I am full square against it.
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:icondebit:
Debit Featured By Owner Feb 13, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Pledge of allegiance? While I have no problem encountering the Stars & Stripes in just about every public places, reciting pledge of allegiance seems rather redundant. First of all, once kids grow up and start working, they will 'serve' the country as 'taxpayers', while a fraction of them will join the ranks and files of public service sectors, and so on. Meanwhile, it is much easier to drill kids into reciting pledge of allegiance than to teach them how to become decent citizens. Reciting merely reinforces unnecessary conformity. We have more than enough of conformity to put up with at work, school, and so on. (Not all conformities are bad, but overdoing it seems rather moronic.)
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:iconpopaganda77:
popaganda77 Featured By Owner Feb 13, 2013  Professional Photographer
OMG INDOCTRINATION loose change 1984 inside job MICHAEL MOORE rage against the machine CHE GUEVARA justin beiber

everyone already thinks its dumb go have this conversation like fifty years ago you slowpoke
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:iconcosmic--chaos:
Cosmic--Chaos Featured By Owner Feb 16, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
:lol:
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:icondutchconnaisseur:
DutchConnaisseur Featured By Owner Feb 13, 2013
Get them young with indoctrination!
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:iconempiredice:
empiredice Featured By Owner Feb 12, 2013
Funny enough I can't remember ever having recited the pledge in my life. What I do remember is not participating and thinking the whole thing was dumb every day we did it in first grade. Apparently, my dad indoctrinated me into being wary of government by then.
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:iconincandescentinsanity:
IncandescentInsanity Featured By Owner Feb 12, 2013  Student General Artist
I dunno. I never even thought about what the words meant until high school, and by then I never said it anymore. It's hella weird that we make students do it though
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:iconsapphirezero:
SapphireZero Featured By Owner Feb 12, 2013  Student Writer
Do you think it's OK to make kids recite the pledge of allegiance before they're even old enough to understand what they're doing?
No, and forcing kids to say the pledge is illegal under the 1st Amendmant due to West Virginia State Board of Education v. Barnette in 1942. In 2006 the case Frazier v. Alexandre upheld this and gave the child monetary damages. So under Federal law, you can't force a person to recite the pledge.

Personally, I don't. I think it's creepy and wrong to force kids to accept their country as the greatest before they can form their own opinions about it first. I think the pledge is something that should be taught in high school, after kids have learned about American history and modern civics (not that most American schools would do a good job of teaching these things, but I'm imagining a best case scenario here).

What part of the pledge incites that it's the best country or even better than anyone else? The pledge is : 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.
The pledge is short and to the point, but I see nothing here that incites nation superiority at all.
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:iconblack-tiger-of-evil:
Black-Tiger-of-Evil Featured By Owner Feb 13, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Exactly. I'm not fond of the pledge either (mainly because I have an issue with them putting the words 'under God' in it when it really shouldn't be there, but it's a minor annoyance at worst) but I've never been forced at any point to say it, just to stand up.
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