Court Upholds "Under God" in Pledge of Allegiance Case

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) - A federal appeals court in San Francisco upheld the use of the words "under God" in the Pledge of Allegiance and "In God We Trust" on U.S. currency, rejecting arguments on Thursday that the phrases violate the separation of church and state.

The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals panel rejected two legal challenges by Sacramento atheist Michael Newdow, who claimed the references to God disrespect his religious beliefs.

"The Pledge is constitutional," Judge Carlos Bea wrote for the majority in the 2-1 ruling. "The Pledge of Allegiance serves to unite our vast nation through the proud recitation of some of the ideals upon which our Republic was founded."

The same court ruled in Newdow's favor in 2002 after he sued his daughter's school district for having students recite the pledge at school.

That lawsuit reached the U.S. Supreme Court in 2004, but the high court ruled that Newdow lacked the legal standing to file the suit because he didn't have custody of his daughter, on whose behalf he brought the case.

So Newdow, who is a doctor and lawyer, filed an identical challenge on behalf of other parents who objected to the recitation of the pledge at school. In 2005, a federal judge in Sacramento decided in Newdow's favor, ruling that the pledge was unconstitutional.

"I want to be treated equally," Newdow said when he argued the case before the 9th Circuit in December 2007. He added that supporters of the phrase "want to have their religious views espoused by the government."

In a separate 3-0 ruling Thursday, the appeals court upheld the inscription of the national motto "In God We Trust" on coins and currency, saying that the phrase is ceremonial and patriotic, not religious.

Reached on his cell phone, Newdow said he hadn't been aware that the appeals court had ruled against him Thursday.

"Oh man, what a bummer," he said.

Newdow said he would comment further after he had read the decisions.

[quote="Rascalking, post:1, topic:190289"]
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) - A federal appeals court in San Francisco upheld the use of the words "under God" in the Pledge of Allegiance and "In God We Trust" on U.S. currency, rejecting arguments on Thursday that the phrases violate the separation of church and state.

The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals panel rejected two legal challenges by Sacramento atheist Michael Newdow, who claimed the references to God disrespect his religious beliefs.

"The Pledge is constitutional," Judge Carlos Bea wrote for the majority in the 2-1 ruling. "The Pledge of Allegiance serves to unite our vast nation through the proud recitation of some of the ideals upon which our Republic was founded."

The same court ruled in Newdow's favor in 2002 after he sued his daughter's school district for having students recite the pledge at school.

That lawsuit reached the U.S. Supreme Court in 2004, but the high court ruled that Newdow lacked the legal standing to file the suit because he didn't have custody of his daughter, on whose behalf he brought the case.

So Newdow, who is a doctor and lawyer, filed an identical challenge on behalf of other parents who objected to the recitation of the pledge at school. In 2005, a federal judge in Sacramento decided in Newdow's favor, ruling that the pledge was unconstitutional.

"I want to be treated equally," Newdow said when he argued the case before the 9th Circuit in December 2007. He added that supporters of the phrase "want to have their religious views espoused by the government."

In a separate 3-0 ruling Thursday, the appeals court upheld the inscription of the national motto "In God We Trust" on coins and currency, saying that the phrase is ceremonial and patriotic, not religious.

Reached on his cell phone, Newdow said he hadn't been aware that the appeals court had ruled against him Thursday.

"Oh man, what a bummer," he said.

Newdow said he would comment further after he had read the decisions.

[/quote]

:clapping::clapping::clapping:

Reached on his cell phone, Newdow said he hadn't been aware that the appeals court had ruled against him Thursday.

IMHO this says a volume on how frivolous this suit was.

[quote="kimmielittle, post:2, topic:190289"]
:clapping::clapping::clapping:

IMHO this says a volume on how frivolous this suit was.

[/quote]

I agree. This rocks!:thumbsup:

I love my country so much-I want it to stay a Juedo-Christian based society.

There is NOTHING wrong with saying "UNDER GOD" in the pledge. If you don't want to say it, then don't.

I don't particularly care about this case one way or the other -- there are much bigger things to worry about than the pledge -- but one comment has confused me:

[quote="Rascalking, post:4, topic:190289"]
I love my country so much-I want it to stay a Juedo-Christian based society.

[/quote]

Given that the words "under god" were added to the pledge in 1954, I'm confused as to how you think that removing them would somehow render the society no longer "Judeo-Christian based." Are you implying that American society before 1954 was not "Judeo-Christian based"?

I guess the bigger question here is exactly what you mean by "Judeo-Christian based," given that our government is based in large part on Enlightenment principles advanced by Deists and other non-Christian thinkers. I suppose you're just referring to the fact that the majority of citizens subscribe to the Christian religion and derive some of their values from that faith. If that's the case, then I'm really confused as to how removing two words from a ceremonial pledge would do anything at all to change that fact.

Maybe I shouldn't bother devoting so much thought to your post, but if you'd care to enlighten me, I'd appreciate it.

"In God We Trust" was first put on American money when the gov't issued greenbacks during the Civil War.
Secretary of the Treasury Salmon P Chase wanted a Bible verse and Pres. Lincoln suggested Acts 3:6

"Silver and gold I have none but such as I have I give to thee." :)

The atheists might have a better case if we had gone with Chase's original idea.

[quote="AntiTheist, post:5, topic:190289"]
I

Given that the words "under god" were added to the pledge in 1954, I'm confused as to how you think that removing them would somehow render the society no longer "Judeo-Christian based." Are you implying that American society before 1954 was not "Judeo-Christian based"?

Maybe I shouldn't bother devoting so much thought to your post, but if you'd care to enlighten me, I'd appreciate it.

[/quote]

Ok~

Sorry if I wasn't clear. We've been a Judeo-Christian based society since the beginning. Maybe that saying wasn't in the pledge because we didn't need a reminder before the 1950's! LOL

I wasn't implying we were not Judeo-Christian based before that, nor was I saying we won't be if that gets removed. All I'm saying is that it is a nice little saying in the Pledge, and if you don't want to say Under God (Or the pledge for that matter) than don't. I don't care. But for the 70% of us (yes, I'm pulling that number out of the sky) that do like saying Under God, it's nice we have the option.

Sorry if I was confusing or misleading.

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