I’m so excited to finally launch this project!
For more than a decade, I’ve been writing about church/state separation at this site. And as readers know, out of necessity, I usually focus on the results of current cases, not the history of older ones. The problem with that is that you can’t really understand certain controversies without that deeper knowledge.
Consider the Pledge of Allegiance.
Why do so many people oppose it? Some point to the phrase “Under God.” Some have a problem with any pledge that suggests we live in a country that truly has “liberty and justice for all.” But the Pledge has been controversial for decades — and often for very different reasons.
Telling a fuller history of the Pledge means talking about religious (and non-religious) minorities fighting for their civil rights, Supreme Court justices who realized they made a huge mistake, acts of violence against dissenters, political backstabbing, questionable legal strategies, questions of child custody, and a marketing tool that people took way too seriously.
I want to tell that story. I’m going to tell that story. And I would appreciate your help.
I’m creating a podcast specifically about the Pledge for an audience that’s not just atheists.
Consider it the church/state equivalent of “Hardcore History”: One person telling an in-depth story, hopefully without sounding like a dull textbook. Everything will be thoroughly researched, written, and recorded by me in a professional studio.
While I still haven’t figured out if I’ll release one giant episode that’s several hours long, or release several shorter episodes all at once, it’s the sort of thing that should be ideal for a long road trip or for anyone who would love to learn more about these cases from a (hopefully) trusted voice.
If this Kickstarter succeeds, I hope to make other episodes focusing on other church/state separation topics with a rich history. But it starts with this series on the Pledge.
Anyone who makes at least a $25 contribution will get early access to the final product. There are more details (and other rewards) right on the Kickstarter page. I hope you’ll consider contributing if you think this is worthwhile. Having done the research on this for the past couple of months, and uncovering so many anecdotes and legal analyses I’d never heard before, I’m so excited to share this with you when it’s done.
I’m biased, but I find all this extremely fascinating and I think readers of this site will feel the same way. Please consider chipping in!