Vol. 21 No. 10 - Published by the Freedom From Religion Foundation, Inc. -
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Pledge of Allegiance Pilgrimage
On the Fourth of July I visited my parents in my hometown of Rome, N.Y. Remembering back to the third grade--where I learned that Pledge of Allegiance author Frances Bellamy was buried in Rome Cemetery--I decided to drive my son, Cary, there to check it out.
I thought you would appreciate receiving some of the pictures we took at the gravesite, especially the one showing the base of the tombstone with the engraving of the original pledge.
Knowing you often have to deal with the "intellectually challenged"--spoon-fed with Jesus myths in youth and FOX News in adulthood--I reasoned that maybe this hard evidence might someday serve a purpose in your efforts to educate such individuals.
So, now the next time one of these types tries to inform you that Bellamy wrote "under God" into the first pledge in 1892, you can look them straight in the eye and--with all the level-headed, well-reasoned, freethinking solemnity you can muster--say, "Then why weren't those words engraved into this freakin' tombstone?" and whip out my snapshot.
Or perhaps some similar, but less juvenile, retort.
P.S.: Many thanks to Anne for decades of tireless dedication to freethought on her retirement!
P.P.S.: And just maybe--largely because of her service--the next generation of Microsoft Word spellcheckers won't flag "freethought" for not being a word!
December 2004 Excerpts