Children Pledge Allegiance to the Flag
in San Francisco, California, at Raphael
Weill Public School in 1942.
Dorothea Lange photo
By Allen Chan, Courier Staff Writer
Everyday, at the beginning of second period, Logan Live starts its announcements. During this time they take a few seconds to recite the pledge of allegiance. A question formulates on how many students actually rise and recite the pledge. “None of my classmates rise for the pledge,” says an anonymous student. “Our teacher says we don’t have to.” Similar responses from students are given when asked if they rise during the pledge.
Josh McAllister remembers, “In elementary school, we always stood and recited the pledge. However, in high school nobody really does.” It is true that students in elementary schools are not reluctant to say the pledge, whereas high school students simply do not care. In fact, some people believe there are several causes for this lack of care.
Paul Duya claims he would be more willing to recite the pledge if it was “ said through a loudspeaker and not through Logan Live. Hardly any people are able to hear Logan Live and the loud speaker would get everyone’s attention.” Nonetheless, Josh Barrina, an Anchor for Logan Live, says, “It is up to the students on whether or not they rise for the Pledge. It is on the same time everyday.”
Both sides make a good point, but the problem not only lies with students’ carelessness or their ability to hear. Some students choose not to rise because they are invoking their right not to. Another anonymous student claims “it is our willingness and constitutional right not to.” Indeed, they are right because even Justice Robert Jackson wrote in 1943,"that patriotism will not flourish if patriotic ceremonies are voluntary.” This means that although rising for the pledge and showing patriotism is good, it must be done voluntarily. Forcing one to do the pledge would be going against the pledge itself.
However, showing patriotism and respect are two different things. Ms.Papa’s students make that interesting point. They claim that their teacher has them rise for the pledge and, if they would like to, recite it. That way they are upholding their right not to pledge their allegiance, but at they same token they are not disrespecting this country. Delegates from different countries rise during other countries pledge. Even the disabled students at Logan rise during the pledge. Lots of people rise not to show their allegiance, but to show their respect.