Why I do or do not stand?

May 17, 2022

The Pledge of Allegiance is said even day on the intercom and we are taught since Kindergarten that it is normal to recite the pledge of allegiance daily, so we do.

In fact, Mississippi state law states that “all public schools of this state shall require the teachers under their control to have all pupils repeat the oath of allegiance to the flag of the United States of America at the beginning of the first hour of class each day school is in session.”

“[The pledge of Allegiance is] our nation’s motto. And within the United States, we live under the constitution, we all live by a set of rules, and as per the Constitution and the Bill of Rights, we all have freedom of speech. And so it means the Constitution gives us those liberties to be able to do those things.” JROTC Instructor colonel (RET) Roger Johnson said. 

But in current times social and political philosophies change as some kids choose to sit during the pledge.

So now state law states that “Any student or teacher who objects to reciting the oath of allegiance shall be excused from participating without penalty.”

And now there are lawsuits that have appeared involving students not standing for the pledge of allegiance.

Why I don’t Stand:

 “And to the republic, for which it stands, one nation, under God, indivisible with liberty and justice for all.” Liberty and Justice for all, huh?

Where is the justice for Kendrick Johnson who was rolled up in a mat, and was killed by an “accident”? Where is the justice for Trayvon Martin who was shot and killed for absolutely no reason?

I will stand for the pledge when there is a change in this country. I will stand for the pledge when the very people who built this country will stop getting treated like the bottom of the barrel. I will stand when my people are treated with respect, and finally, get reparations.

It makes no sense that we still have no Anti-Hate Bill for Black Americans when brutality against the African American race has and still is going on. It’s crazy that since we were dragged here in chains 400 years ago, things have barely changed. We are expected to be okay with the treatment that has been pushed upon us, but I will not pretend like we are okay.

Why would I stand for a country that doesn’t stand for me? Why would I stand for a country where justice is only served when you are of a lighter complexion. People choose to turn a blind eye to how black people are treated in America, and then continue to gaslight, and make it seem better than it actually is. I will not be gaslit. Until there is a change in this country, I will not stand for the pledge.

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Why I stand:

Why do I stand for the flag? Standing for the flag for me helps me show respect to the ones who lost their lives or serve our country to keep this country safe. While I have no family members in the army, I feel that I should give them the respect they deserve because of how they choose to leave their families to help protect all the people of America. I also stand to give respect to those families because of the hardships they have to go through with having a loved one part of the military. Some of the things that these families go through are the time spent away from the person, the stability of the family, and the lack of control over the military careers. 

I do stand for the flag for respect, but also I don’t discriminate against the people who sit for the pledge. The reasons that some people have for kneeling or sitting during the pledge are valid and shouldn’t be pushed aside. One of the reasons that people don’t stand for the flag is because of the phrase, “liberty and justice for all”. Most people believe that America doesn’t provide any justice or liberty for all because of all the current events that have happened that have involved racism, homophobia, and sexism. Them sitting during this national expression gives them a way to silently protest for the rights of all. Although this way of expression is valid, I choose to stand because it’s what I believe is the way to show how thankful I am to be protected by the US military.

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