Friday, September 11, 2009

The Constitution, The Pledge, and SGA

You know...I thought when I got to college the instructors would be folks who held college degrees and would be well read in things like the Constitution, the history of our country and so forth.

Sadly, I was mistaken.

A couple days ago I got this email from a Coach at CACC concerning celebrating Constitution Day on September 17.

Constitution Day...

okay, I've never heard of this day before either, but someone here at CACC has and
******** felt that it would be a good idea if we celebrated this day by visiting the CACC flagpole and saying the Pledge of Allegiance. The A/C SGA will sponsor this event and possibly we can have one of our new young members start us all on God Bless America.

Date: September 17th

Time: 12:30 pm

Location: In front of the Administration Building, surrounding the US Flag. For
those out of touch, it's the one with Red & White stripes, and in one corner a navy
blue background with 50 stars in white. It'll come back to you when you see it.


Needless to say, after reading that I was very disappointed. I was sure that higher education had evolved past the point of having coaches conduct any kind of educational activities that involve history or government or social studies. In high school I expect to see a coach in one of those positions. I've never understood it as most coaches I've encountered teaching those subjects wouldn't have known what the Constitution said/meant even if it was tattooed on the back of their eyelids. In this case the coach admits he had never even heard of Constitution Day. My question is why in the hell is he leading the parade around the flag pole then? I can name at least two instructors who would have been far better suited to conduct a Constitution Day gathering than this guy.

I was also astounded that the recommended way to celebrate Constitution Day was to recite the Pledge of Allegiance. The Pledge of Allegiance has absolutely nothing to do with the Constitution. It was written over 100 years later by a man named Francis Bellamy who was a Baptist minister, a Christian socialist, and the cousin of socialist utopian novelist Edward Bellamy. The original Pledge which read "I Pledge Allegiance to my Flag and the Republic for which it stands, one nation indivisible with liberty and justice for all" was published in the September 8th issue of the popular children's magazine The Youth's Companion as part of the National Public-School Celebration of Columbus Day. The event was conceived by James B. Upham, a marketer for the magazine, in a campaign to sell American flags and American nationalism to public schools.

Even scarier than the plot to sell National Socialism (NAZI Party in Germany) to American public school children is the original salute that went with the pledge. from Wikipedia

Swearing of the pledge is accompanied by a salute. An early version of the salute, adopted in 1892, was known as the Bellamy salute. It ended with the arm outstretched and the palm upwards. It eventually evolved to palm downward. Because of the similarity between the Bellamy salute and the Nazi salute, President Franklin D. Roosevelt instituted the hand-over-the-heart gesture as the salute to be rendered by civilians during the Pledge of Allegiance and the national anthem in the United States, instead of the Bellamy salute.

I'm one of those 'weird' people who thinks making children say the Pledge of Allegiance in school is wrong. It is complete government indoctrination. Making school children pledge allegiance to the government is just fundamentally wrong in so many ways. Children don't have a clue what government is or what it does and public schools certainly don't teach children the real role of government. In fact, public schools only teach what the government wants them to teach. And what does the government want them to teach? That the government is wonderful, all powerful and that no individual can exist without the government.

I'm also not down with a possible rendition of "God Bless America". I don't believe in the Christian god nor any other gods. And, for those that do believe, isn't asking God to bless America kind of selfish? It's like praying before a football game. What is being prayed for? Victory over the other team? You really think the same God that Christians believe created and controls the entire universe and everything in it has time or even interest in the outcome of a football game? Or that this country should be blessed over all the other countries in God's infinite creation?

But what really pissed me off was the coach's insulting remark at the end of the email...

Location: In front of the Administration Building, surrounding the US Flag. For those out of touch, it's the one with Red & White stripes, and in one corner a navy blue background with 50 stars in white. It'll come back to you when you see it.

WTF? How insulting can one be? Insinuating that those who might be interested in joining in a celebration of Constitution Day wouldn't know what the US flag looks like? The same flag that each and every one of those possible participants was made to pledge allegiance to for 12 years of their life in public school? Really?

This whole thing made my blood pressure go up. After I calmed down I sent the coach a reply email informing him of how fundamentally wrong he was about the Pledge of Allegiance and God Bless America being the proper way to celebrate Constitution Day. I proposed that a more proper way to celebrate it would be to have a program educating students about the Constitution, what it says, what it does, how to exercise the rights granted by it and so forth and also a discussion on how the government (both Democrats and Republicans) are destroying it each and every day. I also told him his quip about the flag was completely inappropriate and insulting. I also asked him how to go about joining the Student Government Association (SGA). He is apparently in charge of it. YIKES!

He wrote me back and acknowledged that I am better educated in this area than he is, that he hopes to see me at the flag pole and that the first SGA meeting is next Wednesday. During this meeting new members will be accepted and officers will be nominated. I plan to throw my hat into the ring for an officer position. Possibly the president of the SGA.

I also plan to attend the flag pole event. I'll be wearing my 4th Amendment t-shirt which reads...


Valis said...

Awesome Loretta! You are amazing.

Anonymous said...

The Pledge of Allegiance WAS the ORIGIN of the salute adopted later by the National Socialist German Workers Party, as shown in the work of the symbologist Dr. Rex Curry (author of "Pledge of Allegiance Secrets").

Nicjor79 said...

Where did you get that shirt? I would like one of my own.

Nick said...

lol I've never heard of Constitution Day either. Sounds cool though. Hope you have fun at the event, even after the weirdness of the email. That last comment about the flag was a bit of an eye-raiser.

Nick said...

lol what Nicole, you don't want to be harassed, poked and prodded by police? C'mon, they're just out to look out for ya :P I do find the idea of wearing a big sign that tells the police to buzz off rather amusing.

Loretta Nall said...

NicJor...A friend of mine from SSDP gave me my first shirt in 2003. Another friend gave me a new one in 2007. I was searching the internet last night for a source to purchase more and couldn't find any like the one pictured above. i emailed my friend who I got the second one from and he is sending me more. He said he is about to print some up as well. I can have him send one for you if you want. I'll get it to you when they get here.

And Nick...I've worn these shirts for 6 years and never had a problem with the cops. Its a freedom of speech I just like pissing off the cops.

Don said...

Loretta, I’m in total agreement with most of what you posted although I’m not an atheist and I believe that there is a God, while at the same time recognizing the right of you and others to not believe that.

I especially agree that the coach you wrote about is a dimwit of the first order, and with your statements about what should be done on Constitution Day to enlighten people about what the constitution says and what it means.

When I was in K-12 back in the late 30s through the early 50s “Civics” was still a required subject, If that were still the case the coach might not be so uninformed. That’s one of the many problems with “government” schools today.

I wish every young adult today were required to take the oath I took several times, and which all members of Congress take when assuming office (even though they almost never live up to it), and that they would understand the meaning of the oath. That oath reads as follows:
“I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will 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; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter. So help me God.”

Of course, everyone who takes that oath and intends to follow it must first understand what our constitution says and how it limits the powers of our federal government and reserves all other powers to the various states or to the people. I wonder how many who take the oath actually understand what is in our constitution.

Loretta Nall said...

Probably not very many who take the oath understand the Constitution Don. They damn sure don't act like they understand it once they get in office.

To help rectify that problem among the students at CACC I have ordered 50 pocket Constitutions and will hand them out on Constitution Day at the flag pole gathering.

Don said...

Good for you, Loretta, I just hope they study the constitution, understand what it says, and then live by it.

Knight said...

Lord don't get me started on those butts in office...They don't have a clue about our Constitution. The Constitution is the best thing that could have ever happened to "we the people." It is the one thing in my life that I will always stand by; the rights our founding fathers establised for us. I believe they knew what the future was actually going to hold for each of us. They knew what they had to do and they did it. Now we get to tell it like we see it, push every button we can to get it heard, and we owe it all to our founding fathers for establishing one hell of a document that would protect us from government officials long after they were gone. God Bless the makers of our Constitution. Fabulous Blog!! Loretta...I love it.

sixstring said...

I agree that most people do not know what is in the constitution.
Even experts, who understand what it says, disagree about what it means in many areas.
The meaning of the constitution is what the majority of 9 people say it is. And many times they disagree. And the meaning changes with public attitudes. It was once constitutional to intern Japanese Americans simply because of their ethnicity. Separate but equal was once constitutional.
Why did it take a constitutional amendment to outlaw alcohol but only statutes to outlaw pot?
The original intent of limiting federal government seems to be long gone. The commerce clause has been used to expand government into almost all aspects of our lives.

Anonymous said...

Loretta, why don't you believ in God? Can't you see him all around us? He gave us life, salvation, grace, and mercy. There is evidence of him all around us.
*John 3:16 "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life."
*John 3:36 "Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life, but whoever rejects the Son will not see life, for God's wrath remains on him."
* Psalm 139:14 says "I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.”
The bible tells us that God is our creator and eternal heavenly father. We are to praiase him because we are wonderfully made. After all, we should praise and thank him for our freedom.

Loretta Nall said...

Anon... I don't believe in the Christian God nor any other God for the same reason I don't believe in Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny and the Tooth Fairy. None of them are real.

Anonymous said...

Yes, God is real, and he sent his son to die for you and forgive your sins so you may have enternal life in heaven with him.

Loretta Nall said...

Anon...That's your opinion and you are entitled to it. I don't believe in any gods and that's my opinion and I'm entitled to it. I'd never try to change your mind because belief or lack thereof is a very personal thing. Please extend me the same courtesy and not try to change my mind. If I want to be preached at I will attend church.