Archived Story

“One nation (with no comma) under God”

Published 4:03pm Wednesday, December 28, 2011

I’ve noticed something at a couple of city meetings recently and want to give praise to City of Troy officials for reciting the Pledge of Allegiance the way it was meant to be proclaimed.

A couple of weeks ago, I attended a city council meeting and smiled to myself when no pause was given between “one nation” and under God.” Call me an insane grammar lover, but that is the way the pledge is written. At last night’s council meeting it reminded me to give local leaders a pat on the back.

Cue the history lesson.

Francis Bellamy visited with President Benjamin Harrison to ask him to back the idea of a flag flying over every school and the teaching of patriotism in all schools. On June 21, 1892, the President signed a proclamation that read: “Let the National Flag float over every school house in the country and the exercised be such as shall impress upon our youth the patriotic duty of American citizenship.”

Bellamy, in turn, wrote these famous words that were first printed in “Youth’s Companion” magazine on Sept. 8, 1892: “I pledge allegiance to my flag of the United States and to the Republic for which it stands, one nation, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.”

During the second National Flag Conference in Washington D.C. (Flag Day) in 1924, the words “of America” were added. House Joint Resolution 243, approved by President Dwight Eisenhower on June 14, 1954, also added the words “under God.”

The pledge, as amended, still reads: “I pledge allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America and to the Republic for which it stands, one Nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.”

No comma, no pause. Good on ya, local leaders!


Robbyn's Nest

by Robbyn Brooks

A catch-all news blog for what’s happening in Troy and beyond. Have photos or an idea, you’d like to share? E-mail

  1. aveteran

    “…reciting the Pledge of Allegiance the way it was meant to be proclaimed.”

    I suggest that you might benefit more from a history lesson. It’s incredible how you could get this utterly wrong, especially after including how the Pledge was originally written, and meant to be recited – “one nation, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.” NO “god”, which was added during the McCarthy witch hunts as a poke at the “godless” Communists. The only thing that adding “god” does, in case you haven’t been watching the news, is to DIVIDE us as a nation. While you are free to recite the Pledge in any manner you wish, so is this veteran, who will only recite the correct, godless, pre-1954 version.

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  2. aveteran

    I didn’t get the impression that the story was about a comma. It really gave far more of the impression of cheering on the council for emphasizing “under god”. Words on a screen don’t always convey the nuance and intonation intended.

    Despite his religious affiliation Francis Bellamy, the author of the original Pledge, did not include any reference to “god”, and his descendants vigorously opposed the addition of “under god” to the Pledge as antithetical to Bellamy’s ideals.

    You may attack me as “anti-religious”, but “anti-forced-religion” is far more accurate. Funny that you spend more space in your response devoted to the religious aspect of the Pledge than the placement of the comma – do you now see why I reached my conclusion about the original article?

    As for the false and assumptive reference to my “fake or made-up-for-one-time use e-mail address”, looks like you jumped to the wrong conclusion as well. I’ve had it for years. I also didn’t call your article spam – you drew another wrong conclusion and took offense at the wording of the e-mail address. But thank you for exposing me to spam, viruses, and hostile e-mails by posting it.

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