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Should we have "under God" in the Pledge of Allegiance? Show more Show less
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In a nation built on freedom, debate has surrounded the phrase "under God" in The Pledge of Allegiance for decades. Does the phrase alienate all those who are not of Christian faith? Or is it simply the continuance of a long-standing tradition?

We should have "under God" in the Pledge of Allegiance Show more Show less

Allowing the phrase to stay in the Pledge of Allegiance is more of a superficial choice rather than an attack on religious freedom.
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The Founding Fathers founded this country under God

The Founding Fathers, who were Christians, founded America on the basis of God while also ensuring freedom of religion.
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Context

On July 4, 1776, The Declaration of Independence was signed, proclaiming the 13 American colonies as an independent country: The United States of America. The Founding Fathers based the country on religion and God, just as many countries had done before them. However, the Founding Fathers realized not everyone subscribes to the same religion. In 1791, The Bill of Rights was adopted, with the first amendment granting freedom of religion to all citizens.[1]

The Argument

Despite our Founding Fathers establishing America on the basis of God, we still have freedom of religion. Having important documents such as the Declaration of Independence and the Pledge of Allegiance reference God is more out of a perfunctory fact, especially in modern times. The Declaration of Independence says "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights...".[2] This statement isn't so much focused on the Creator (God) as it is the rights one has just by being alive. Similarly with the Pledge of Allegiance, it is not so much focused on being a nation "under God" in the strictest terms as it is being focused on being a nation united together on one unified base. Even though not everyone in the country practices the same religion, the fact that the nation was originally founded on a unifying factor is the main point. That unifying factor at the time just happened to be religion, like it was for most countries. What matters is the unifying factor of our country now - that we're all Americans and we stand up for all freedom, including religious freedom.

Counter arguments

Just because our Founding Fathers agreed to unite America under God doesn't mean they were right. For one thing, they also agreed to allow slavery to continue. The comparison between the Declaration of Independence and the Pledge of Allegiance is erroneous because all of the statements regarding God were in the original documents of the Declaration of Independence, while "under God" was added to the Pledge of Allegiance 10 years after the original form was adopted.[3]

Premises

[P1] The Founding Fathers established America on the basis of religion and God. [P2] The Founding Fathers referenced God in the Declaration of Independence numerous times, yet the document has never been edited to exclude the references. [P3] There is no need to remove "under God" from the Pledge of Allegiance as it serves the same perfunctory purpose as the references to God in the Declaration of Independence.

Rejecting the premises

[Rejecting P2] The comparison between the Declaration of Independence and the Pledge of Allegiance is erroneous.

References

  1. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_the_United_States
  2. https://www.archives.gov/founding-docs/declaration
  3. https://www.newsmax.com/FastFeatures/should-under-god-be/2014/11/11/id/604697/
This page was last edited on Monday, 20 Apr 2020 at 07:36 UTC

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