Cindy Sandman (“Keep ‘under God’ in the Pledge of Allegiance,” July 9) wrote: “Our nation belongs under God and all the children raised in the United States of America need to learn that from the first grade on, if they intend to be good United States citizens.” This might be a good time to remind her of the words of the founding fathers: “The Government of the United States of America is not, in any sense, founded on the Christian religion …” (from the Treaty of Tripoli, negotiated during Washington’s Presidency in 1797, ratified by the Senate and signed by President John Adams).
While Christianity is the predominant belief of the citizens of the U.S., it is explicitly not that of the country itself, and the founding fathers (most of whom were Christians themselves) were wise enough to see that.
Sandman continued: “God Himself is not a religion, however He is honored and worshipped by a variety of religions. What are we supposed to do, change the Pledge of Allegiance to “under Buddha” instead of under God? I think not. I don’t believe our founder fathers or Abraham Lincoln would buy that.” I don’t believe they would have either. But then, I think they would have been equally appalled at the current wording.
Why should the country be under any deity? And though one could argue that the same God is worshipped by most religions, there are plenty of people who either don’t worship a god at all, or worship a different god or gods. What of them? Should the United States be favoring those with a particular belief? There must be liberty and justice for all, not just the Christians, Jews, and others who happen to believe in the Abrahamic God.
The First Amendment clearly states, “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion …” I think the intent is clear.