Can you recite the U.S. Pledge of Allegiance? If you are an American, chances are it will be very easy for you. Now, for a trickier one: can you recite the original U.S. Pledge of Allegiance, as written by the first author to dream it up? I bet you had no idea that there were ever any other versions of our famous pledge. I would also bet that you are surprised to see one element missing:
"I pledge allegiance to my Flag and to the Republic for which it stands: one Nation indivisible, with Liberty and Justice for all."
If you didn't catch it, nowhere in there does it mention God, either under or over.
Many, if not all, Americans who read this blog will be very familiar with the Pledge of Allegiance -- so familiar, in fact, that it is etched almost permanently into the back of our brains, never to be forgotten and so easily reiterated on request. Most people went their entire life without sparing a shred of worry as to the words of the Pledge. Such days, however, have since passed.
People now very much worry and quarrel over the fate of the Pledge of Allegiance. They have fought so much that many schools no longer require memorization and recitation of it from their students. Atheists may be feeling jubilation at a victory; Christians, a sharp pain in their faithful sides. Though the fight between the believers and non-believers climbs further and further, with the Pledge squarely in the midst of the battle, it is not some anti-Christian conspiracy.
In fact, that's the whole problem. Many public officials and lay folk wish for the Pledge to simply be a secular leaf of our governmental tree, as most other institutions of the American government are. Christians can claim that they are simply giving appropriate discretion to God that was not given originally, but it should be noted the author was most likely a Baptist minister himself. He was a spiritual head of one of the most fundamental Christian groups in the world.
So, with all of that, what is left to argue for the Pledge staying as a solely Christian pledge? Nothing, and that is exactly why the case against it is so strong. All claims made for the conservation of the Christian version are shabby at best, and easily broken down by the tenets of Reason and Logic.
Don't get me wrong, I don't hate anyone for being Christian. I have plenty of close Christian friends, in fact. What must be kept in mind, though, is that all of my Christian friends are more than respectful of my religious views (or lack thereof) and never try to bring it up with me. Hardcore theists would argue that this makes them less Christian than those who impose, but I have to wonder why, if there is only one, all-powerful God, that he requires of his subjects sole worship and conversion? He should have no problem converting most people with a simple display of power.
Alas, I digress. The Pledge of Allegiance is slowly working its way back to its secular roots, and you can help it get there! Restore the Pledge is a group outside of religious background (choosing to promote neither atheistic nor Christian goals), opting rather to stop offending, on the highest level, countless millions of atheist children, parents, and immigrants just for the sake of making a select group of Christians feel better.