David Waters makes a novel case for removing the phrase “Under God” from the Pledge of Allegiance. The person who’s credited with the idea, Presbyterian minister George M. Docherty, has passed on. And so too has the era which elicited adding the phrase to the Pledge. In short, it’s an anachronism, no longer relevant in today’s pluralist society.
Of course, I agree. Atheists have long supported removing the phrase for the very reasons Waters cites. But I believe the Pledge itself is an anachronism. It’s unnecessary for those who agree with its words, and irrelevant to those who don’t. It’s not a pledge that makes America worth living in and fighting for, but the ideals that founded it. We would do better to educate fellow citizens why those ideals make for a superior society, rather than force them to memorize words and kid ourselves we’ve strengthened the country’s foundations somehow.