The Instigator
PFJones
Con (against)
Tied
3 Points
The Contender
hello24942
Pro (for)
Tied
3 Points

The line "One nation, under God" should be kept in the pledge of allegiance.

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 2 votes the winner is...
It's a Tie!
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 2/12/2017 Category: Religion
Updated: 11 months ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 516 times Debate No: 99845
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (1)
Votes (2)

 

PFJones

Con

I would like to argue against anyone who would like to argue that the line should be kept in the pledge. I would like to set up some guidelines, however.

Whoever my opponent is, use the first round to just say you'll accept the challenge, and then Rounds 2-4 will be used as a three round debate.

That will be all.
hello24942

Pro

I would like to accept your offer and take the pro side of the argument. Good luck.
Debate Round No. 1
PFJones

Con

I wish my opponent good luck in what I hope to be a fair and clean debate.

---

The source being used for my first argument is Forward Progressives author Allen Clifton: https://forwardprogressives.com...
https://forwardprogressives.com...

I will preface this by saying that I hold no political bias in this debate, and that I am merely using Mr. Clifton's writing so that our debate may share a coherent timeline of the pledge of allegiance.

My first argument will be based on the history of the pledge of allegiance. Many reasons that people, typically conservatives, believe that the line "one nation, under God" should be kept is the history that the line and the pledge itself has to do with United States' cultural ties. I will be denouncing these claims as factually misguided. 116 years after the American Revolution, the pledge was created. An additional 62 years later, the line "under god" was finally added. It was not added for religious matters, no, it was added in fear of the growing communist threat around the world. Nowadays, there is no threat of the United States turning communist, and thus no reason to keep this religious line within the the pledge.

For my second argument, I am going to be talking about the constitutional flaws, and the separation of church and state. Stated in the first amendment of the constitution, "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances." This is stating that nothing done by anyone, especially the US government, should have the right to have god be the only reference in the pledge. Separation of Church and State, which is in the same vain, is almost always respected by liberals and conservatives alike, so I see no reason as to why the line in question is allowed to stay in.

Finally, I will be talking about schools and their usage of the pledge. While there is no mandatory pledge in any schools, there are still issues that need to be worked out. In general, abstaining from saying the pledge is frowned upon for a stigmatic reason. The Ninth Circuit court ruled that schools were allowed to say modified versions - which is good. The only issue however, is that this ruling only applies to nine states: Alaska, Arizona, California, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Oregon, and Washington. Nine is not enough, and it is rather ridiculous that such liberties are not already guaranteed in all 50 states.

For these three reasons, I heavily urge for a strong Con/Neg voter turnout.
hello24942

Pro

I have no evidence nor reasoning to rebuttal my opponent's first argument.

The 1st amendment of the US constitution states "or abridging the freedom of speech." The government is protecting our right to speech as citizens of the United States through stating this line. Everyone and anyone can say what they please, although sometimes there will be consequences.

In my opponent's 3rd argument he states: "While there is no mandatory pledge in any schools." I fail to understand how the third argument is improved through that line. It is showing there is no mandatory pledge, so the argument flows over to my side. Before the pledge is started the announcer says, "We/I INVITE you to stand and say the pledge of allegiance." As stated before, students are not forced to say the pledge. An article written by the staff from Constitutioncenter.org demonstrates this as well. "In 1943, the Court changed its course in West Virginia State Board of Education v. Barnette, where the majority said that "the Free Speech clause of the First Amendment prohibits public schools from forcing students to salute the American flag and say the Pledge of Allegiance,"(Paragraph 9). It may be frowned upon but if it is against your beliefs it is against your beliefs and everyone else can suck it up and deal with it.

"One nation, under God." I want the audience to think about that line for a moment.
'One nation.'
I fail to understand why this line should be removed. It is providing unity to our country. It shows that even through all the terrible things in our world we remain one. We are inseperable. It gives our country power and strength. The pledge would just say, "I pledge allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America, and to the Republic for which it stands, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all." Not only does the pledge not make sense, it is just is not the same without the one line of unity.
For these reasons, I urge for a strong pro voter turnout.
Debate Round No. 2
PFJones

Con

My opponent has freely opted not to oppose my first argument, so it remains untouched. My opponent either agrees on my point or has no adequate counter to it.

My opponent attempted to nullify my argument about the first amendment, but slipped up and contributed to the argument remaining on my side of the debate. In my opponent's exact words, "Everyone and anyone can say what they please, although sometimes there will be consequences." This statement both contradicts itself and goes on to cement the point my first amendment and school arguments were getting at. Saying that 'sometimes there will be consequences' goes to show that not everyone can say freely what the please, and also brings up my point of church and state -- which also remains untouched, mind you. There should never have to be consequences for abstaining from saying something that harbors religious bias.

In a daring act of insensitivity to cultures where the term God is not the preferable term, my opponent has told people to "suck it up and deal with it." Which goes forth to fuel my argument that the pledge has cemented itself so far into American society that the concept of changing two words warrants a harsh response. This also gives undertones of my opponent supporting religious conformity, which I've already talked about being not allowed in the Constitution.

From here, my opponent can only either support unconstitutional behavior, or drop that segment of their argument.

The only non refuting argument that my opponent brought up was their discussion of the words 'One nation'. I find this highly irrelevant to the argument, deeming the point null and void. While it is true that the words "one nation" are in the title of this debate, my opponent, along with anyone else who has read the debate so far, should be able to see that this debate is in the 'Religious' category, and the only discussion up until that point was about "under God". This means that my opponent has failed at adequately refuting my arguments and is now scrambling for some way to deem approval. All of my points remain standing, and I have refuted the only Pro argument my opponent has made.

For these reasons, I continually urge a massive Con/Neg voter turnout.
hello24942

Pro

I have no further evidence nor reasoning to rebuttal my opponent's previous arguments. I wish them luck in further debates and congratulate them on their win.
Debate Round No. 3
PFJones

Con

I will abstain from this last round as my opponent has forfeit.
hello24942

Pro

THis post is necessary to finish this debate.
Debate Round No. 4
1 comment has been posted on this debate.
Posted by AmericanDeist 11 months ago
AmericanDeist
@PFJones

You don't understand the Constitution. No where does it say "separation of Church and State." Jefferson coined the phrase during a speech, but it is not part of the Constitution. Furthermore, that separation is in reference to governing and theocracies. In other words, the government can't tell the Church how it is to be run, and the Church can't tell dictate the law to the government or have the head of the Church rule the land (think king, pope). It has nothing to do with "government can't say God or have prayers." Furthermore, many of the Founding Fathers were actually deists, not Christians, and God is a part of our culture whether you accept a deity or not. Besides, atheists account for 3% of the US population. A vast majority of people believe in God as a deity, and in this country the majority rules.
2 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Vote Placed by JimShady 10 months ago
JimShady
PFJoneshello24942Tied
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Total points awarded:30 
Reasons for voting decision: A rare debate in which my agreement switches from one side to the other. To begin with, conduct/grammar are evenly matched, and both parties also bring a couple sources with them, so there's that. Of course Con will win this because of Pro's forfeit (he even says he won), but I also find Con's 1st amendment argument of separation of church and state to be almost impossible to argue with. Pro says people can opt out of saying the pledge, but Con basically says it should not be an option at all. The Constitution is up to interpretation, so people may disagree with me, and that's fine. But for me, debate goes to Con.
Vote Placed by AmericanDeist 11 months ago
AmericanDeist
PFJoneshello24942Tied
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Total points awarded:03 
Reasons for voting decision: Both had good conduct and grammar. Con does not understand the Constitution, and I will explain that in more detail in Comments. Pro correctly cited WVSBEvB 1943, which nullified Con's argument.