In America, we have the right to speak or not to

Published 12:00 am Saturday, June 29, 2002

"I pledge allegience to the flag of the United States of America, and to the Republic for which it stands one nation with liberty and justice for all."

Anything seem a little odd about the previous phrase that we are taught as childen? Doesn't it seem that one MAJOR phrase makes all the difference?

On Wednesday, three judges from the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that reciting the Pledge of Allegiance in public schools is an unconstitutional "endorsement of religion" because of the addition of the phrase "under God" in 1954 by Congress, according to CNN.

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However, in 1943, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled during the middle of World War II that any student could refuse to say the pledge for religious reason. But, what this particular circuit (which is said to be the most liberal in the country) is saying is that the pledge itself is unconstitutional.

It is highly unlikely that the U.S. Supreme Court will uphold this decision based on the fact that every morning they begin a session, one of the first phrases they hear is, "God save this honorable court."

By now, if God was forbidden from all forms of American government, one of the justices in our 226 years of being a country would have made an objection.

Even still, people from other countries come to America for its freedom, and almost every one of their languages has some word in its vocabulary for God. For example, the German word for God is Gott, and the Latin word for God is Dios. Muslims also believe in God, but call Him Allah.

America was formed so that people could practice their religion without persecution. Fortunately, along with freedom of religion, assembly and press, we also have the right to freedom of speech, which in this country also means, the right not to speak.