We pledge an allegiance to a flag ... or is it to an idea or a country or a nation or a government?
Maybe some discussion and thought will help us all come to a better understanding. This series is dedicated to finding some of the great voices of America's past and examining a few of the words they leave with us.
|George Washington Bridge NYC.|
Washington needed this bridge in
1776 when he lost the
Battle of Brooklyn
"A more perfect union" ... a clear indication they wanted to try to improve on the way a nation is governed. It was obvious there would be issues. IF more than one person is involved - there will be differences of opinion on how to proceed on any given issue. This spawns discussion on how to proceed. Governments of all kinds make some effort to get the input from the people involved to come to a decision about what to do next. So there are many voices and many proposed solutions.
Every voice has some OTHER agenda attached to it, ranging from selfless concerns for welfare to an edge in the structured solution to gain power toward future solutions. Thus has humanity resorted to political discussion. Polarized Debate to find resolution. So, as we look into our own issues or those of the nation, we need to hope consideration is given to alternate views. Sometimes OUR view is the alternative.
George Washington, in 1795 was retired and living at Mount Vernon when he wrote this. His life was full and he had served as America's first President. "The man who could have been King". This quote is from that period:
"When one side only of a story is heard and often repeated, the human mind becomes impressed with it insensibly."
LETTER TO EDMUND PENDLETON | THURSDAY, JANUARY 22, 1795 (George Washington)
He is telling us to seek out more than one source of information. In the polarized POlitical world of our nation's government - power bases and allied interests, including the greater part of media sources - are eager to make THEIR voice the successful argument. So, it is important that an EDUCATED citizen pursue several information sources - especially when one voice alone appears to dominate the space.
In the formation of The Constitution, the founders included an encouragement for ROBUST debate in all the media. We know it as "Freedom of Speech" and it is the very FIRST amendment to the Constitution among the "Bill of Rights".
When we Pledge Allegiance to "the flag" - we can take pride that our founding principles included a freedom of speech. It even means if you want to protest your own nation by some kind of snub to the flag ... as long as you don't harm someone doing it - then you are free to do so without fear of government retribution. (Bear in mind the public is not the government and -- as at a dinner table - there are reasons why politics and religion are often forbidden topics even among family)
Questions for the week
by the end of the week on one daily question
Day 1 -- Does Washington suggest we are overly impressed by constant repeated messages?
Day 2 -- Was Washington predicting the rise of demographic advertising methods?
Day 3 -- How can you get more views on a given subject related to elections or policy?
Day 4 -- Is your ability to discern motives and passion critical to your judgement?
Day 5 -- Can you suggest a few instances where you SHOULD listen to a single voice?
|George Washington served as America's first president from 1789-1796.He died at the age of 67|
When we say a PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE to the Flag -- is it because we expect our nation to tell us what to do? Or is it the other way around and that is why we - as a large group of divergent thinking people - show this respect? (discuss this)
"I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America, and to the republic for which it stands, one nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all."
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