Pledging Allegiance to What?

I was the son of a preacher man. I was homeschooled. Enough said.


Today’s my son’s first day at public school and it felt…weird. It was weird because it’s an experience that I don’t really share (I did go to first and second grade…but that was oh so long ago!). It was weird because a part of me feels guilty for shipping him off (homeschooler, remember?). It was weird because my son’s such an odd kid and he was really concerned that his backpack cubby was too far away from his desk and it seemed like too much work to him to have to walk back and forth. It was weird ’cause there were some kids just sobbing at their desk. It was weird ’cause he’s now a part of the system…integrated.

But you want to know what felt the most strange? Walking out of the school to the kids all saying the pledge of allegiance. Isn’t there something strange about our kids reciting the pledge of allegiance?

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.

Honestly I don’t really want my kid pledging allegiance to a flag or a nation. I’d much rather my kid pledge allegiance to things that last, to things that matter.



1. the loyalty of a citizen to his or her government or of a subject to his or her sovereign.

2. loyalty or devotion to some person, group, cause, or the like.

Do I want my kid claiming devotion to America? Really? If you could claim complete devotion to something and insert into your life a daily rhythm in order to support this devotion to what would you choose to devote yourself? Loving your neighbor? Being a faithful spouse? Devotion to God? Devotion to peace, unity, generosity? Devotion to America…


Stand up–as if you’re ready to take action, poised and prepared to follow through with the committment you’re about to make

Stand in unity–stand amongst friends, co-workers, classmates because if we’re going to stand for something we’re better off standing together

Place your hand on your heart–as a symbol of the unification of your heart which represents your core inner identity and your hands which represent the actions that result from your personhood

Pledge devotion–to something, to someone, to some idea. But mean it. Live it. Love it. Die for it.

Some will choose flag and country others will choose anarchy…but we should all choose…shouldn’t we?

To be honest I bet Jones was completely confused by the whole thing. I’m imagining a silly look on his face begging the question “what the heck are we doing?” The kid questions everything and doesn’t let anything slide…crazy kid. I hope he enjoys his first day at school.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *