In North Carolina, the Hendersonville Elks Lodge held a contest for kids in which they had to explain “What the Pledge of Allegiance Means to Me.”
And the winner of her age bracket was an eighth-grade student named Madison who had this to say about the Pledge:
“’America will never be destroyed from the outside,’” Ogden read from her essay. “’If we falter and lose our freedoms, it will be because we destroyed ourselves.’ So if you do not say the Pledge of Allegiance to this nation and support America, you will be a part of that destruction.”
… the fuck?
First of all, how does that win a contest?! How bad were the other entries?
Second, it’s just factually untrue. There are people who don’t say the Pledge for religious reasons or personal reasons, and they’re no less patriotic than anybody else.
Third, who are the adults who read that essay and said, “That belief needs to be rewarded”?
The Elks Lodge is a group that promotes belief in God, as if that’s a virtue, so I guess this isn’t all that surprising. But it’s still appalling that anyone would be rewarded for saying that people who don’t stand up for the Pledge are ruining the country.
(Thanks to Brian for the link)