I gotta go on record - I agree with the decision.
I'm spiritual. I believe there's a spiritual aspect to life not explained by science.
That said, i've also studied a lot more of human history (and therefore humanity itself) than most of you. It's what my degree was in. I know enough of human history to have serious doubts about the authenticity of this book we call the bible. Much of it was made up, created, edited to suit current political agendas (in Rome as well as later).. Many of the errors are by ommission, others by interpretation. Worse, when you actually read the New Testament, and then observe what "Christians" are doing on a daily basis, you see they aren't even practicing what the book tells them. Turn the other cheek? I don't see that happening. Love thy neighbour? Very rarely. So, the point is - I'm not a Christian. I think you figured that out by now.
The words 'Under God' in the pledge never really bothered me, to be honest. I have not set out on a vendetta to have them removed.
Someone else did take it upon themselves.
Just because a single thing doesn't bother me, doesn't mean it's okay. Given the choice, I'd say No to the "Under God" terminology in the pledge. I am more strongly against school prayer and forced prayer at public events.
My basic concern is this - if I do not believe, I should not be pressured into participating. Many people take it as an insult if you refuse to recite the pledge or participate in prayer. Most non-believers fake a belief in Christianity to 'get along' in society without having to deal with the social ramifications of being a non-christian.
That means they are being hippocrites. In a strict interpretation of the Bible, they are blaspheming the Christian God. I wonder WHY Christians want to put non-believers in such a position that they will be inclined to be blasphemous?
I would rather be silent and respect your religion than to participate and be a hippocrite. Your social pressures would have me BE a hippocrite.
Would any of you Christians be okay if tomorrow, you were asked to please kneel and face Mecca? You are told you can opt out, but when you do, you're the only one in the room not kneeling, and afterward, everyone looks at you funny, and some even take the opportunity to criticize you for not respecting Allah. You then go out and find your tires have been slashed by a 'believer' who resents your non-belief. Pretty soon, you kneel too, just like everyone else. You are not only blaspheming one religion - theirs - but TWO - your own as well.
This is what Christians are asking non-christians to do - BLASPHEME. By the actions of many Christians, it is made a non-option in many cases to refuse to participate.
People say this is a free country. They are wrong. Society ensures that deviants are punished. Those who are openly Atheist, or among other religions, have to fear reprisals from supposed Christians. Six million Jews died in Germany because someone didn't like their religious affiliation. This is the kind of things non-christians fear, and RIGHTFULLY SO, in a climate where revealing your lack of belief can result in hate crimes.
You think it isn't so? Maybe not in your state - but in Texas I've SEEN it. I have been kicked out of my own sister's home because I refuse to accept their version of politics and religion. I have been threatened to my face by someone who discovered I was not a Christian. It is easier to just fake it.
So this 'Under God' thing. It's about the attitude of society and government. Our government was founded on the principle NOT THAT WE ARE ALL CHRISTIAN, but that we EACH have the right to WORSHIP AS WE SEE FIT (OR NOT). One of the things that existed in Europe at the time was COMPULSORY ATTENDANCE at church. This meant that if you weren't in church on Sunday, the preacher would come to your house after services (or a representative thereof) and ask why. If you weren't bedridden, you could suffer criminal penalties. This was the kind of thing our government was set up to never do. The government must not meddle in religious affairs, or religion is hindered. This protects Christianity just as much as it does any other religion. Have most Christians in this country forgotten, for example, just how many variations of Christianity we HAVE in this country? What if the government chose just one to endorse? What if that one chosen form were, say, the Mormons... I'm sure all the Pentecostals would happily convert. NOT.
Okay.... to wrap up the rant...
This 'Under God' thing. By itself it seems innocuous. But it is a part of something bigger - an overall movement in the last 50 years, primarily in the last 15, to a country that is increasingly religious rather than secular. Despite current popular opinion, the 'founding fathers' were, as a hole, not anything close to what would be considered 'Good Christians' today. They set up a secular government for a variety of reasons. We (as a nation) are throwing that down the drain. It scares me shitless.
The courts upholding the intent of the constitution in the case of the Pledge is a good move in combatting this increased desecularization of society.Therefore, even though the one thing didn't bother me much, I'm glad it bothered someone, and I'm glad the phrasing was struck down.