• Blame Congress, not Mr. Newdow
    Rama Schneider | September 15,2005

    Blame Congress, not Mr. Newdow.

    Oh my ... uh ... gosh! It's back. Yet one more court fight over the use of "God" in government. In "Pledge of Allegiance ruled unconstitutional" (TA, 09/15/05) we read of Michael Newdow versus the combination of big government and big religion (redux). While Newdow does argue the Pledge as it exists with the phrase "one nation under God" is unconstitutional the current ruling appears to apply only to recitations in public schools, and the current ruling of U.S. District Judge Lawrence Karlton says such is indeed unconstitutional.

    But it isn't Mr. Newdow's fault, folks. Consider this:

    The reference to one nation under one god is a recent addition to the Pledge of Allegiance coming only in 1954 with the Cold War boiling hot. "As the legislative history of the 1954 Act sets forth: At this moment of our history the principles underlying our American Government and the American way of life are under attack by a system whose philosophy is at direct odds with our own. Our American Government is founded on the concept of the individuality and the dignity of the human being. Underlying this concept is the belief that the human person is important because he was created by God and endowed by Him with certain inalienable rights which no civil authority may usurp. The inclusion of God in our pledge therefore would further acknowledge the dependence of our people and our Government upon the moral directions of the Creator. At the same time it would serve to deny the atheistic and materialistic concepts of communism with its attendant subservience of the individual." (Quoted from 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals case Newdow v. U.S. Congress, et al, 2002)

    This intentional religious advancement by Congress was, and is, antithetical to our federal constitution's 1st amendment which reads in part "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof;" In 1954 Congress willfully advanced at least two notions: 1) there is A god, not more and not less, and 2)atheism is un-American.

    This purposeful violation of our constitutional precepts by Congress is especially egregious considering their oath of office: "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." (Yes I do note the irony of those last four words.)

    So don't hold Michael Newdow at fault. All he's trying to do is make our governments act within the laws they're supposedly bound by. It was our federal congress that willfully violated the principles established in the one piece of paper that binds all Americans ... the federal Constitution.

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