The Instigator
GarretKadeDupre
Pro (for)
Losing
3 Points
The Contender
Mangani
Con (against)
Winning
12 Points

The Phrase "Under God" Should Remain In The Pledge Of Allegiance

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 6 votes the winner is...
Mangani
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 1/9/2013 Category: Miscellaneous
Updated: 4 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 4,700 times Debate No: 28988
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (49)
Votes (6)

 

GarretKadeDupre

Pro

First, I must thank whoever chooses to participate in this debate with me.

The only stipulation this debate requires is Con has the burden of proof since I am defending the status quo.

The phrase "under God" should remain in the Pledge of Allegiance.
Mangani

Con

I thank my opponent for posting this debate, and it is my hope our arguments are simple, and our points concise.

My opponent believes the phrase "under God" should remain in the Pledge of Allegiance. I believe it is neither necessary to the Pledge. I also believe it is an affront to many Americans, and it's removal is of less consequence than it's permanence.

The Pledge of Allegiance is directed at children. Currently it teaches, and enforces a monotheistic point of view not shared by millions of Americans. This is a violation of government neutrality towards religion.

The addition of the phrase was done so by Congressional legislation at a time when the fear of Communism was at it's height. This new law promotes a religious establishment within the context of the Pledge- a clear violation of Constitutional law.

There are not enough characters for me to continue to make my point in this round.
Debate Round No. 1
GarretKadeDupre

Pro

Thank you Con.

I believe the phrase is necessary to the Pledge. It reinforces the most basic principle upon which our nation was founded: Our rights come from God and can't be taken away by government. Removing the phrase "under God" from the pledge would undermine the most basic principle behind our nation's freedom.

It may be an affront to many people, but only to those who oppose the foundational principles of America. Why are they pledging allegiance to a country if they don't agree with it's fundamental guiding principles?

There is no problem with the Pledge teaching the fundamentals of American society to children.

The circumstances under which the phrase was added doesn't reduce it's importance. Whether Communism is a threat or not, we should be reminded that without the principle of God-given rights, we lose American exceptionalism.

The phrase does not violate Constitutional law.

I hope my opponent finds that I've satisfied his request for simplicity and conciseness.
Mangani

Con

My opponent's argument is completely contrived. He claims removing the phrase from the Pledge would undermine the most basic principle behind our nation's freedom, but doesn't seem to understand that our nation, and our freedoms are based on Ancient Greek democracy, and secular principles.

To be clear: the nation was founded mostly by deists, not Christians. The writer of the Declaration of Independence, for example, Thomas Jefferson, was a deist, and even wrote his own bible in which he stripped Jesus of deity. John Adams, his friend, and another major figure in the Revolution, was a deist. John Locke, who was not a revolutionary, but heavily influenced the Declaration of Independence, was also a deist. The man who influenced the Patriots to declare independence, Thomas Paine, is also the most influential deist in history.

The phrase was added in 1954 after extreme lobbying from The Knights of Columbus, not by the deist founders, nor by the Socialist author of the original.
Debate Round No. 2
GarretKadeDupre

Pro

Our nation is not based on solely secular principles. It's based primarily on the principle of God-given rights. (1)

You claim America was founded mostly by deists, not Christians. I don't know why you mentioned that. I never argued either way. It doesn't change the fact that this nation is founded on the principle of God-given rights.

It doesn't matter if the phrase was added in 1954. It doesn't matter if it was added after extreme lobbying from The Knights of Columbus. Neither of those things change the fact that this nation was founded on the principle of God-given rights, or the fact that the phrase "under God" simply enforces this.

Thanks for your rebuttal, though.

(1) http://www.archives.gov...
Mangani

Con

My opponent did me the favor of proving my point in Round 2 by trying to reiterate his false claim in his Round 2 argument. There is a huge difference between Jefferson's reference to "Nature's God," which is a Deist sentiment, and the suggestion that referencing God is necessary in the Pledge of allegiance. Nature's God requires no acknowledgement, worship, reverence, or mention. For an 18th century deist, referring to Nature's God, or the Laws of Nature is the equivalent of denying religion, and therefore affirming the lack of religious influence in the formation of this nation.

My opponent says that none of my arguments matter because they don't deny the fact that our rights are derived from nature. The fact that our rights are derived from the Laws of Nature (science), Nature's God, God, etc. have nothing to do with the Pledge of Allegiance, and the mention of God in the Pledge. The mention of God in the Pledge does not honor the secular nature of the Founders' intentions.
Debate Round No. 3
GarretKadeDupre

Pro

Con tries to equate "Nature's God" with "Laws of Nature", "science", and "God", but that's wrong. "Nature's God" refers to the God who created nature, or "The God of Nature". Indeed, that is what Jefferson, who was a Deist, meant by the phrase!

Here is a quote by Jefferson to remove any doubt that he believed in God: "I have ever thought religion a concern purely between our God and our consciences for which we were accountable to him". (1)

Con has already conceded that Jefferson believed in a God who created nature by calling Jefferson a Deist. Deists, by definition, believe that God created nature. If a Deist wrote the phrase "Nature's God", it must be concluded that he was referring to the God that created nature!

By Con's logic, the phrase "Jacob's toy" refers to "Jacob", and "Jacob" and his "toy" are the same entity! I hope you, the voter, realizes that this is the crux of my opponent's argument and that it simply makes no sense.

"under God" should remain in the Pledge. Thank you.
Mangani

Con

Jefferson doesn't refer in the Declaration of Independence to "our" God- he refers to "Nature's God." To understand his intent you must be intellectually honest. Jefferson rejected religion every chance he got, as did many of the Founding Fathers.

When a deist speaks of God, he does so within the context of logic and reason, and not within the context of religious devotion, which is precisely what the phrase "under God" intends. The phrase does not say "under the Laws of Nature," nor "under Nature's God." This implies a particular deity. The question here is not whether Jefferson believed in God, or not, rather what was his intent in referencing Nature's God in the Declaration of Independence, vs. the inclusion of "under God" in the Pledge. One is a secular reference honoring no establishment of religion, the other is not.

Ours is a government of men- the Constitution invokes "We the People," not God. Our rights are secured by us, and our relationship with our government- not God.
Debate Round No. 4
49 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by GarretKadeDupre 4 years ago
GarretKadeDupre
JonK, well put. I couldn't have put it better myself.
Posted by JonK 4 years ago
JonK
i didn't read the debate but i think that "under God" should absolutely be allowed to stay in the pledge of allegiance. first off, we aren't hearing what god it is. secondly, we, or at least i, hear a number of blasphemies everyday when i'm out and around people. everything from Jesus f'n Christ, to God d*mn, to...well you get the point. furthermore, if you hear these phrases consistently said then i think you should be able to hear a quick "under God" in the pledge of allegiance. who gets offended by that? perhaps defensive and i think that thats why i see this debate here but not offended. to another point i should say that (and i'm speaking in common scenarios here) if our governor is a Christian, the principle is a Christian, the vast majority of the students and possibly teachers and Christians, the president is a Christian and the list goes on and on... then those who disagree with the premise of a God should (in my opinion) just deal with it and be lucky that they aren't living in ancient rome or some other place with no religious tolerance. because if they themselves had no tolerance for any religion in a land like that then they themselves would be the ones being brutally murdered as a result.
Posted by GarretKadeDupre 4 years ago
GarretKadeDupre
Oh ok.
Posted by Mangani 4 years ago
Mangani
I'm actually agreeing with you.
Posted by GarretKadeDupre 4 years ago
GarretKadeDupre
I don't even know which one of us you agreeing with...
Posted by Mangani 4 years ago
Mangani
Complaining about argumentum ad hominem in the comments section is... well... argumentum ad hominem.
Posted by GarretKadeDupre 4 years ago
GarretKadeDupre
Dude, there are no ad hominems in this debate. This is the comment section.
Posted by Dissolusion 4 years ago
Dissolusion
WOW! I just joined Debate.org, this is the first "Debate" I comment on and it seems like I'm back in 3rd grade!
Nothing but Argumentum Ad Hominem here...
Posted by Mangani 4 years ago
Mangani
I didn't know you liking me was consequential... I'm flattered you would like or dislike me :-/

Much more childish than I thought, but ok ;)
Posted by GarretKadeDupre 4 years ago
GarretKadeDupre
I was talking to proglib. I still don't like you.
6 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 6 records.
Vote Placed by bladerunner060 4 years ago
bladerunner060
GarretKadeDupreManganiTied
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Reasons for voting decision: This debate veered a bit at the end in the debate about nature's God. Considering the short rounds, it felt like a time-waster. Whether founders referenced God or not, the United States was created as a secular nation. The very first amendment indicates the government should not be establishing any religion, yet we have a pledge that says we're "under god". Pro did not establish any compelling reason to violate what I find to be a basic principle of the US, rather, he tried to claim that reinforcing monotheism WAS a basic principle of the US, which as we all should know by now is not the case. (Treaty of Tripoli, anyone?) Conduct went too squirrely to count, particularly if I take comments into consideration. One source isn't sufficient to me to award a point for, nor is the couple of Con typos enough for me to award S&G to anyone in particular. I really with the rounds had been longer, or that the "nature's god" argument hadn't been brought up.
Vote Placed by Maikuru 4 years ago
Maikuru
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Reasons for voting decision: Neither side makes a compelling case, and instead simply reiterates their claims over and over. Tie vote.
Vote Placed by DeFool 4 years ago
DeFool
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Reasons for voting decision: Pro argues that all American citizens are rightfully compelled to acknowledge a god as they swear an oath of allegiance to the United States. He supports this outrage by claiming that the nation was founded on theistic principles. He does not seem to notice how irrelevant the argument is, and Con points this out at the end of R3. Cons argument that the acknowledgement of gods and goddesses in the pledge "does not honor the secular" values of the founders is convincing. I could not award any other scores.
Vote Placed by dylancatlow 4 years ago
dylancatlow
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Reasons for voting decision: Pro, if you weren't religious, do you really think you'd be supporting your resolution? The state should stay out of religion, completely, and Mangani made that case. The constitution makes absolutely no reference to God, so how can it approve of any one God? We might as well say, "Under Allah." Get it?
Vote Placed by AlwaysMoreThanYou 4 years ago
AlwaysMoreThanYou
GarretKadeDupreManganiTied
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Reasons for voting decision: Definitely too short for a substantial debate. Pro had one source vs Con's zero sources, but that's not a massive gap so sources can be tied. Overall, arguments to Pro because Con undertook a burden of proof as explicitly stated in the first round, and he failed to meet it. It would have been nice if he had continued the argument on the Constitution, because that definitely would have done it if it had been supplemented well, but the speculation on the intent of the founders wasn't tremendously convincing, especially given their invocations of God in other documents of the time.
Vote Placed by Grantmac18 4 years ago
Grantmac18
GarretKadeDupreManganiTied
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Reasons for voting decision: 1000 characters is much too short for a substantial debate. Conduct and S&G are shared just as sources are; Pro made many assertions but provided no evidence to reinforce their validity. Con accurately points out the fallacy of Pro's "Nature's God" argument. Ultimately, Pro became transfixed on this argument; which, allowed Con the opportunity to prove that the only founding father mentioned, intentionally used the word God to reference the metaphysical and not the spiritual.