Monday, January 3, 2011

Pledging and Praying (6/30/2002)

Subj:     The Pledge
Date:     6/30/2002 1:11:40 AM Central Daylight Time
From:    LibralLady

I was flipping channels Thursday evening and just happened to catch the e-mail comments you were posting from your listeners.  I was appalled at their comments and ran to my computer to express my concern.  This is what came out.
* * * * *

The Pledge is the Pledge.  A prayer is a prayer.

The beauty of the Pledge is that it is an affirmation of loyalty, devotion, and love of country.  An affirmation to uphold the principles of freedom upon which our Republic was founded.  A commitment to unity and justice and liberty.  For all.

No matter if I am male or female, white or black, some other color, or a combination in-between, whether I have a college degree or sling hamburgers at MacDonald’s, whether I believe in God, or Zeus, or some special amulet I found at the grave of my ancestor, or maybe I just believe in me, whether I am tall or short, whether I work or not, whether I have family or not.

Regardless, I can proudly stand with other loyal Americans and pledge fealty to my country.  It fills me with joy and appreciation and thankfulness that I live in a country that has been a melting pot of people from all places and times and was founded on the belief that coming here would be a good and safe place to be.

The beauty of the Pledge is that it embraces a philosophy that embodies and protects so many freedoms.  Freedom For and Of and From.

The beauty of one such freedom is choice.

The beauty of choice is that I can choose to pray or not to pray and still be a loyal, productive citizen of this country.

The beauty of prayer is that it gives me an opportunity to talk with my Creator.  To thank Him or ask for His help and guidance, His protection and care.  Something I do frequently every day.

Pledging allegiance to my country is a privilege and honor in which I have participated all my life.  So is praying.

The Pledge shows allegiance to country.  Prayer shows allegiance to God.  They are not the same.  There is no need for them to be. One does not exclude the other.

I learned to say the Pledge long before it was revised to include “under God”.  Not saying “under God” didn’t mean we were against God then and it doesn’t mean we’re against Him now.

If you prefer the original, say it.  If you prefer the revision, say it.  But don’t accuse folks of being anti-God if they prefer the original.  How misguided and insulting.

Do you think about the words when you say them?  We are one nation.  We are indivisible.  We offer liberty and justice to all.

And we have serious real issues and problems to solve.  United we are strong.  We need to expend this mighty energy to solve real problems.  Divided, the enemy wins.

Was our show of unity after 9/11 so short-lived?  Was it merely superficial emotion?  Genuine patriotism is not just waving flags, singing patriotic songs, and staging emotional songfests and gatherings.  True patriotism is practicing the principles this country stands for.  Demonstrating tolerance and respect and consideration and compromising when points of view conflict. 

As upholders of the Pledge, patriotic citizens who love and defend this country, we should be asking ourselves, who is responsible for these diversionary tactics which sidetrack us from the real issues facing this country and the world. 

These are the folks whose patriotism should be questioned.
* * * * * 

"Of all tyrannies a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims
may be the most oppressive. It may be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron's cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for own good will torment us without end, for they do so with the approval of their own conscience."
--- C.S. Lewis, God in the Dock
                                                                         * * * * *
Published in The Tennessean, The Nashville Eye, 7/2002

No comments:

Post a Comment