Furthest Right

It’s not conformity if we intend equality

U.S. schoolchildren have long been able to opt out of reciting the pledge for religious reasons. But unlike other pledge controversies, this one centers on how and where schoolchildren say it, not whether they should.

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School officials agreed to resume it as a daily exercise, but not in the classroom.

“We don’t want to isolate children every day in their own classroom or make them feel they’re different,” said Principal Michaela Martin.


“We don’t want to…make them feel they’re different” is the most important statement of this article. The idea of tolerance is that every behavior becomes legitimized, which quickly means that any behavior outside of the lowest common denominator is a special need.

Intelligence is a special need. Honesty is a special need. Belief in anything other than personal convenience is a special need. And yes, token patriotism is also.

While the pledge of allegiance was never my favorite part of school, it was a ritual that served a useful role: affirming why we were a nation, what we believed in, and in part saying thanks to the government for our day of schooling.

At this point, with schools eroded to little more than babysitting and work process indoctrination, and the country divided because liberalism has encouraged it to pull in so many different directions unity is impossible, none of the above really applies.

The distance between those two Grant Park scenes says a lot about how American liberalism fell, and why in the Obama era it could become — once again — America’s ruling creed. The coalition that carried Obama to victory is every bit as sturdy as America’s last two dominant political coalitions: the ones that elected Franklin Roosevelt and Ronald Reagan. And the Obama majority is sturdy for one overriding reason: liberalism, which average Americans once associated with upheaval, now promises stability instead.

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America’s giant industrial monopolies, the progressives believed, were turning capitalism into a jungle, a wild and lawless place where only the strong and savage survived. By the time Roosevelt took office during the Great Depression, the entire ecosystem appeared to be in a death spiral, with Americans crying out for government to take control. F.D.R. did — juicing the economy with unprecedented amounts of government cash, creating new protections for the unemployed and the elderly, and imposing rules for how industry was to behave.


Translation: liberalism keeps the peace, instead of forcing us to make difficult decisions over whether we support pleasant illusions or long term difficult realities.

It is a short-term bargain, which makes sense given that when nations turn to liberalism, they are generally moribund in their final chapter.

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