It's truly a rare occurance when I find myself completely unsure about where I stand on a particular issue. September 11th found me torn between two fundamental American principles; On one hand...pride and patriotism, and on the other...complete mistrust for the government. This issue is a little different, but still equally perplexing.
First, I guess you ought to know where I'm coming from here. I am a deeply spiritual person, but one who is strongly opposed to practically all "organized" religion. I am a Buddhist - which is probably best described as a "disorganized" religion. Second, I am a liberal in the utmost sense of the word. Third, I have a tremendous amount of pride in the ideals that went into the forming of this country, the fundamentals being Seperation of Church and State, and the Balance of Power. Which brings me to this issue.
On one hand, I think this is a genuinely stupid thing to argue about on EITHER side of it. Does it really matter this much? And have those people that are responsible for bringing this matter to the forefront of political discussion really doing anything other than provide the politicians in power grounds to chip away even MORE at the sacred seperation? It seems to me that this is a counter-productive way to bring about a solution to the "problem," if it is even one at all. Considering the complete and utter barrage of Christianity-Inspired messages we've been getting from the government since the 11th, it seems like it would be fairly obvious to whoever brought this to court that almost nobody in a position of political power is going to agree with them.
On another hand...after hearing the backlash against the decision, I have found myself leaning more and more towards favoring it, just so that I don't end up on the same side of the fence as these evolutionary left-behinds. These are the same people who claim to be pro-life, but bomb abortion clinics. These are probably the same people who sent the anthrax last Autumn (as we'll find out someday, I'm almost sure of it.) to what they considered to be "liberal" institutions and individuals. These are the same people who can't see beyond that which they've been brainwashed into - that the Republicans they support so fervorously are just as morally backwards as the Democrats, if not more. I don't even want to agree with these people as to who should make the MLB All-Star Team, let alone political decisions.
And on the third hand...("you have three hands?")("yes.") One has to consider who all the players are here. The people who want "God" removed from the Pledge, The people who would probably rather see the Pledge be a Bible passage, and one group practically unheard from, as of yet - the children. If we take this word out of their morning routine...what are we telling them? Are we telling them that their religion is wrong? And even if we (read:I) think it is, who are we to do such a thing? Could that be sending the wrong message? The message that it's OK to tell somebody that their beliefs are wrong? (This hand is the "devil's advocate." I don't use it very often. It's annoying.)
So what's the solution? We make it silent. We have the children talk to their teachers and their parents about what a pledge should be...and have every child make up his/her own, different pledge. If little Timmy wants to mention God, fine. If little Jenny wants to mention Allah, that's fine too. If not-so-little Rocco (He got held back a few years.) wants to praise the almighty Satan, that's cool too. As long as they're doing it for the right reasons.
Or we could always just ask Clapton. See what he thinks about his name being the subject of all this mess.Posted by at June 28, 2002 02:09 PM