Wednesday, April 11, 2007


Hendrik Hertzberg devoted his this week’s New Yorker editorial to the Constitution as it pertains to our voting system.  I have been having slightly different thoughts about it.

I’m wondering whether it’s a good idea for our elected officers to pledge to defend the Constitution, rather than the American people.

Aside from the fact that I know of no other country that has a pledge of allegiance, it’s noteworthy that the American people are asked to pledge allegiance to the flag, whic, one could say represents the american people.

Yet elected officials do not commit to defending the American people. They commit to the defense of a two hundred year old document, whose drafters could never in a million years have imagined the world Americans now live in, so that changes that make sense are often deemed unworthy of debate because it can be argued that they wouuld be contrary to the constitution.

In the name of defending the Constitution, and as a sequitur to their pledge of allegiance to the flag, the American people have been duped into fighting unjustified wars.  Any suggestion that we get rid of the pledge of allegiance brings accusations of disloyalty.

Disloyalty to whom?  Not to the American people, but to the icons they are trained to worship.

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