The Pledge of Allegiance - Under God Explained, Red Skelton

Red Skelton brilliantly delivers the pledge of allegiance... This is really good until the ending.

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Comment by Gregg R Thomas on December 13, 2012 at 5:35am

Maybe you should show that to the uninformed who think the words "under doG" have always been part of the pledge.

I'm for getting rid of the pledge in it's entirety.

Comment by Judith van der Roos on December 13, 2012 at 11:44am
I really do not think pledges of allegiance are a good thing, its strikes too much like writing a politician a blank cheque and saying "i trust you not to take any more of my money than you need" . A pledge is like this is a blank cheque from your morality account.
Judith vd R.
Comment by Strega on December 13, 2012 at 12:07pm

Nice point, Judith. 

I feel a pledge is a bit bizarre.  The government can tax you whether you say any pretty words or not.  Your 'loyalty' to the country you were born in, if you remain where you were born, is not a matter of pledging, it is either existent or non-existent.  Chanting words doesn't change that.  Liars can lie, hypocrites can be hypocritical.  Patriots will stay patriots.  The chanting part is just mumbo-jumbo.

Comment by Matt on December 13, 2012 at 12:16pm

The thought popped in my head the other day:  With all the 6-7-8 yr olds reciting this pledge, I wonder what would happen if you interviewed them and asked what the words mean.  What does "pledge" mean?  What is "allegiance?"  What is a "republic?"  And obviously the answer is that the have no fucking clue.  It started to feel a bit "North Korea" to me... a bunch of folks who are crazy nationalists praising the "dear leader" but not knowing why.  I loved this clip up until the god part because it's important if you're swearing allegiance to actually know what you're saying.

Comment by Doug Reardon on December 13, 2012 at 10:01pm

Red Skelton's public persona and his actual personality were diametrically opposed. 

Comment by James Cox on December 14, 2012 at 4:02am

I pledge to be a nice fellow, to be respectful of honesty and good questions, to have compassion, and be well read. To hand trolls their head when necessary, and offer insightful suggestions to truth seekers as time allows. To be circumspect in my sarcasm, but offer humor as good medicine, and laughter to pretentious demogogs. To face correction and mortality with a tempered courage, and hope for a future that might not include my presence.  

Comment by Ed on December 14, 2012 at 9:08am

@ Strega

It's definitely not mumbo-jumbo. I recall reciting the Pledge at government schools while growing up in a military environment. It seems patriotism has fallen our of favor with many and that the attitude of one country being a better place to live than another is not as prevalent.  Certainly simple recitation does not necessarily generate loyalty, especially at the age of seven. While I have no problem with someone reciting a pledge to their country, especially if it is done freely and with no obligation, there are undercurrents of mind control involved. The government is attempting to instill national pride and unity, but for what motive?

In one respect the sense of patriotism, in the U.S. at least, is no longer held with the same convictions as older generations (those who remember WWII for instance) felt compelled to display. Is this a good thing? That is an interesting question? Should we drop our idealism and patriotism toward our motherland and adopt the new concept of no boundaries and one world government. I am not sure. Implementation of a utopia seems to be rift with problems like greed, lust of power, and religion.

Comment by Strega on December 14, 2012 at 12:37pm

@ Ed

I cannot imagine what it must be like to have brain-washing patriotism chants at school at that age.  It sounds very North Korean to me.

Patriotism is a tool by which the population is engineered to feel good about things that may not be good in their own right.  By chanting to the Great Leader or the Stars and Stripes, I have noticed that some Americans feel they are proud of 'defending' America. 

The question immediately arises as to whether America is under attack.  Other than Pearl Harbor in WWII, I don't think it is. 

Oh sure, terrorists will always be a problem, and I am not brushing over the 9/11 atrocity, but that was not a country declaring war - that was simply terrorism - we have seen a lot of that over the years in the UK with the Irish IRA terrorists, and latterly with the Taliban.

I personally love the idea of 'no boundaries' but of course it would be highly difficult to transform from a system that relies so completely on the boundary concept.  Nevertheless, I truly hope the internet brings virtual boundary-free zones to us so that we can all benefit from sharing good practices and modern education globally.

Religion, power and war all depend on a "them vs us" mentality to succeed, so you are right that these would be inhibitors to a real global attitude.  However, as long as we keep leaning towards a global concept, we can only hope that our future generations will carry that baton forward to real understanding, because it is understanding that leads us towards acceptance.

One day, Ed, one day.  Probably not in my lifetime, but perhaps in the lifetimes of those being born in this century?  We can hope.

Comment by Strega on December 14, 2012 at 4:55pm

Do you really pledge to Her Maj?  We don't, in the UK, I had no idea Canada did that.  Other than the USA, Canada and North Korea, is pledging common?

I think the standing bit is in respect of the formality of the office, not the office-holder.  If you are declaring that you do not have respect for the office, then there is most probably no need for you to stand.  Does anyone really care?  Isn't it used to kind of call the room to order?

I'm just asking because I really have no concept of pledge-giving or disrespecting a particular office.  I'm not criticizing - I don't understand either enough to have an opinion; I'm simply curious.

Comment by Ed on December 15, 2012 at 10:48pm

The one I remember to this day is the one I recited when joining the armed services. To uphold the Constitution and defend it's principles. I am still VERY comfortable with that.


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