The Christian Right Knows Why Will Phillips Doesn’t Stand for the Pledge November 25, 2009

The Christian Right Knows Why Will Phillips Doesn’t Stand for the Pledge

I now know why 10-year-old Will Phillips isn’t standing for the Pledge of Allegiance.

I have Matt Barber of the Christian Right group Liberty Counsel to thank for explaining why Will’s explanation — that we don’t have “justice for all” when it comes to the LGBT community — doesn’t make any sense:

[Barber] believes the boy has been “utterly manipulated and exploited by adult moral relativists who are indirectly using him and other children as political pawns in the burgeoning culture war that is reaching a boil.”

Barber further finds that “it’s really a testament to the level of success that liberal and secular and homosexual activist propagandists in Hollywood and in our public schools and in much of our elitist establishment organizations have enjoyed.”

So, to recap, the culprits for Will’s beliefs are:

— Parents using Will as a pawn
— Liberals
— Atheists
— Gay activists
— Hollywood
— Public schools
— Elitists

The culprits for Will’s belief are not:

— Christians who persecute LGBT people and lead the fight to deny them equal rights.

Got that straight?

Keep up the good work, Will.

When the Christian Right is mad at you because you want equal rights for everyone, you’re doing something right.

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  • I SHOULD find it odd that right wing Christian group would be FOR the pledge at all since it raises the allegiance to the state above that to God. Of course the pledge has contained “under God” for over fifty years and while that may be a comfort to those Christians, the statement certainly is false. The United States of America is under the authority or rule no one’s God, real or imagined.

  • qwertyuiop

    the boy has been utterly manipulated and exploited by adult moral relativists

    Such irony, coming from a Christian.

  • Sackbut

    Of course that all makes sense, from their point of view. They want to manipulate children in their chosen manner, so obviously their “culture war” opponents want to do the same thing. That’s what parents and society are supposed to do, bring up children properly, and the evil opponents are bringing them up wrong. It’s only bad if it’s done with the wrong set of values, don’t ya know.

    In a sense, they’re right. It is a testament to how much success has been achieved by people fighting for recognition of the rights of gay people and non-religious people, pushing to keep government and religion separate, and working to encourage everyone to think for themselves rather than follow dogma. Some of those people have been secular activists, gay activists, and people pushing for change (or resisting changes promoted by religious organizations) in public schools.

  • Trace

    “reaching a boil” oooh!

  • muggle

    Meanwhile they drag children younger than Will on anti-abortion protests often with gory pics on their signs with every intention to at least get argumentive with people on the other side.

    Don’t worry about Will. That kid knows his own mind. That clip with his Dad was pretty much proof that he isn’t manipulated by his parents even though they have obviously taught him that he has a right to his own opinion and ideas. The audacity of some parents!

  • littlejohn

    I’m just barely old enough to remember the Cold War years of the 50s and early 60s, when “loyalty oaths” were the rage. Conservatives considered them a reliable method for detecting secret communists. I guess it never occurred to them that a commie spy would have no difficulty falsely reciting an oath. History always repeats itself.

  • Tom Rhoads

    This reminds me of a conversation I once had, while working at a classified facility, with a guy who was searching for “bugs”. I asked him how he knew what to look for. He stared at me for a long time and the finally said, “how do you think we know?” I guess if “we” do it then “they” must be doing it.

  • ShavenYak

    moral relativists
    culture war
    public schools


    What do I win?

  • TXatheist

    Yeah, I gotta say this is why I don’t drag my 6 year old to stuff and don’t force my atheism on him. We just had his 6th bday party and one of his friend’s parents are gay/two dad’s but my son may or may not refuse to stand up for the pledge and I’m perplexed as to how to explain why I don’t because I know he will follow daddy in my actions at this age.

  • TXatheist

    Just got from AFA… AFA supporters wanted to continue the boycott as a result of Gap’s initial “holiday” ad that mingled Christmas with the pagan “Winter Solstice” holiday.

    Gap says the new ad will include the popular Supermodelquins proudly cheering “Merry Christmas”, and features Christmas trees, lights and ornaments as well.

    In good faith, AFA is suspending the Gap boycott until it has an opportunity to view the new commercial this weekend.

    As a result of your dedicated actions, we believe Gap is beginning to realize that Christmas is not just another “holiday” and will begin to advertise in a way that is respectful to Christians and Christmas shoppers.

  • @TXatheist

    For fun, I complained to Amazon because Amazon is on AFA’s “Companies for Christmas” list. I told them that if the AFA was NOT upset with them, then they weren’t marketing enough to me and the other “…over forty million Americans and over one in five Americans age 18 to 25 identify with no religion (1).”

    I told them they need to start marketing also to my non-religious demographic. They replied with an apology and said they would forward my complaint to their marketing department. 🙂


  • amiable

    I thought it sounded like he was coached at first as well. But if you listen to his response to the question “What is a gay wad?” – that was not scripted or planned, he is just like that – very intelligent and thoughtful for a 9(?) year old. So that makes it more likely for me that he had a part in this idea and is not just being coached.

  • “When the Christian Right is mad at you because you want equal rights for everyone, you’re doing something right.”

    That is an awesome quote! Too bad there are people trying to obfuscate Wil’s stand for equal rights for all.

  • Colin

    Clearly, his parents must be godless, activist homosexuals who voted for Kuchinich, one working as a Hollywood producer, the other as a public school teacher. And they both graduated from Ivy schools. That describes about 0.00001% of the population!

    Oh, and they forgot labor unions. They unions have to be behind this somehow…

  • Starr

    Hey Colin,
    no labor unions involved because we’re in Arkansas… anti-union state. lol

  • I love this site, but on a technical note: could you please keep the slugs short and pithy? is a lot to paste. will fit within 80 columns and otherwise more easily convey why one might wish to click on a link without having to parse line-wraps and dashes.


  • They keep saying “moral relativist” like it’s a bad thing…

  • TXatheist

    gettingfree, though we put up a tree a few years ago AFA went after Lowe’s for calling them holiday trees so Lowe’s backpeddled and changed it to xmas trees. I went into lowe’s and asked where the holiday trees were and the guy pointed to the outdoor section. AFA cares but not the average person.

  • Siamang

    I work in Hollywood, and every time Will doesn’t stand up for the pledge, I make ten bucks.

    If he keeps it up for the next 170 years, it’ll just about cover the effects budget for the blockbuster film “2012.”

  • weas

    Reminds me of Parsimony Analysis – the simplest answer is generally the correct one.

  • Neon Genesis

    Oh, and they forgot labor unions. They unions have to be behind this somehow…

    They also forgot to include the Jews as being responsible.

  • Matt

    Because, to some deluded members of the Religious Right, it’s completely and utterly impossible for a sensible child to reflect on social injustice in America without being manipulated by the liberals (seriously, they act like being a well-rounded Ivy League graduate isn’t commendable). These are the same individuals that baptize very young children and use school kids in their anti-gay arguments.

    When I was in middle school, I did the same thing by questioning why “under God” was inserted in our Pledge during the Red Scare. I wondered why many Americans do not enjoy the comforts of liberty and justice. I arrived at these thoughts independently, but the Religious Right wants you to think that it’s all due to some liberal conspiracy.

    Think about this argument from the Religious Right: children are unable to independently reflect on social injustice without being negatively influenced. To them, that’s the only possible answer. With that in mind, which side of the debate *really* respects children?

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