The country hasn’t felt such a surge of patriotism since the twin towers fell in New York City as ash covered lower Manhattan.
Following the events of Sept. 11, 2001, 70 percent of Americans were “extremely proud” of their country according to Gallup. There was a passion to eradicate terrorism across America as people united as one.
However, over the past several years, nationhood and the pride of America has been plummeting. Now, almost 18 years later, only 44 percent of Americans are “extremely proud” of their country.
Some Americans don’t have pride in the Pledge of Allegiance, the nation’s newest controversy.
In 1954, President Eisenhower asked Congress to add “under God” to the pledge, which they ultimately approved.
However, since 1998, there have been four major cases to remove those words from the pledge, two of which reached the Supreme Court. Most recently in 2014, the Supreme Court ruled that the phrase “under God” represented a patriotic, not a religious, exercise.
Many people say “under God” in the pledge discriminates against atheists, but that is completely false.
For a society or country to discriminate against a certain gender, race or group, it must show prejudice toward them or force them to do something against their beliefs. The Pledge of Allegiance is not mandating nor requiring that Americans say or recite the pledge because of their First Amendment rights.
Atheists and any other groups who don’t wish to participate are freely allowed to do so.
The Pledge was originally written in 1892 to celebrate the 400th anniversary of America’s discovery. The intention of the pledge was to unify the country and to understand the privilege it is to be an American.
The phrase “liberty and justice for all” has often been challenged by minority groups such as the LBGTQ+ community because of their belief they don’t receive that kind of treatment.
While there certainly are instances of injustice in this country that catch our national attention and spark the interest of all Americans, the sad truth is that in this world, there is no country with total “liberty and justice for all.”
The justice system is human and often fails the people of the nation. That doesn’t mean we can’t do better, because we can. But removing the phrase “liberty and justice for all” will not change anything. If anything, it needs to be reinforced as a reminder that we as Americans must always aim to improve that goal and continue to have pride for our country.
The country’s history is rich with achievements that give us pride, but also many failures that we consider distasteful. History is history, but we must continue to look back at our past and learn from our founding fathers’ mistakes in order to become a stronger and better nation.
We should continue to make movements toward a better America, but removing phrases from the Pledge of Allegiance doesn’t move our country forward. It instead takes us backwards making us forget what it truly means to be American.