Texas students will have four more words to remember when they head back to class this month and begin reciting the state's pledge of allegiance.I find it interesting, in a "you've got to be shitting me" sort of way, that students must give written record of their objections to so that they can be free to not partake in make-you-patriotic rituals that have nothing to do with school itself. Students should be free to not participate if they object, for whatever reason, without putting themselves into a file.
This year's Legislature added the phrase "one state under God" to the pledge, which is part of a required morning ritual in Texas public schools along with the pledge tothe U.S. flag and a moment of silence.
State Rep. Debbie Riddle, who sponsored the bill, said it had always bothered her that God was omitted in the state's pledge.
"Personally, I felt like the Texas pledge had a big old hole in it, and it occurred to me, 'You know what? We need to fix that,' " said Riddle, R-Tomball.[...]
By law, students who object to saying the pledge or making the reference to God can bring a written note from home excusing them from participating.
[...]"Most Texans do not need to say this new version of the pledge in order to be either patriotic or religious," said Barry Lynn, executive director of Americans United for the Separation of Church and State. "This is the kind of politicking of religion that disturbs many Americans, including those who are deeply religious."
Texas has had a pledge of allegiance since 1933. In 2003, the Legislature required all schools to pledge allegiance to the U.S. and Texas flags and observe a moment of silence every morning at the beginning of classes.
Posted by Misty at Thursday, August 02, 2007
There's a new phrase in the Texas state pledge: "one state under God". Which, generally, would be filed under inane religious political stunts--what makes this a bit more than a generic pandering stunt is that, in Texas, school children are required to pledge to the state every day (and the country and have a moment of silence). From the article titled: Students must remember 'God' in Texas pledge (emphasis mine):