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The Pledge of Allegiance and Proper Propaganda

Ellis Island has processed almost half a million immigrants this year, so to indoctrinate the new immigrants, the popular magazine, Youth's Companion is calling for the display of the American flag in all public schools. Francis Bellamy, a socialist Christian, submits his Pledge of Allegiance to the magazine along with a special salute. You face the flag, extend your arm straight out with palm down. Yes. IT'S THE HITLER SALUTE! Adolf Hitler is 2-years-old right now, so the Bellamy salute has nothing to do with Nazis. The school superintendents love the Pledge and add it to the school day. In another 25 years, the Pledge will be required, meaning that if you tell your kid NOT to recite it... maybe for religious reasons... you will be charged with "contributing to the delinquency of a minor." Congress will officially adopt the Pledge of Allegiance in 1942, changing the Bellamy Salute to a hand-over-the-heart. In 1954, the words "under God" will be added because of the perceived threat of Godless communism. [1] [2] [3] [4] [5] [6] [7]

I pledge allegiance to my Flag and the Republic for which it stands,
one nation,
with liberty and justice for all.
-- The original Pledge of Allegiance, 1892.
My Take by Alex Shrugged
While education has always been combined with propaganda, our fight over educational goals usually boils down to WHICH propaganda we should foist upon our children. The poem "The Gods of the Copybook Headings" by Rudyard Kipling is a warning. A copybook is used for teaching penmanship. At the top of each page is a sentence that children must copy, but while learning good penmanship, they are burning into their minds whatever is at the top of the copybook. What would you put there? "Might makes right?" or "Love your neighbor as yourself?" It makes a difference. Finally, the Pledge is not exactly a loyalty oath, but some people take it that way. In my 6th grade class a girl refused to recite the Pledge. Our teacher explained that it was her right, so we continued without her. I remember feeling a little resentful because she wasn't conforming, but the feeling passed. I decided that I was OK with her objecting. After all. This is America, home of the free. Isn't it? Well... not always. I think it depends on the generation. [8]

"Separate but Equal"... Plessy v. Ferguson

A couple of years ago, Louisiana passed a law that requires railroad companies to separate whites and blacks on trains by requiring assigned seating and separate cars or partitions. The railroads object because it it and added expense and a lot of trouble. (NOT because it is somehow insulting or degrading.) A New Orleans group organizes to challenge the law. Homer Plessy is 1/8th black, so he can pass for white. He buys a ticket and sits in the whites-only car. To make sure that he is arrested at the proper place and time, detective C.C. Cain is hired. Make no mistake. This entire situation is contrived to produce a test case that they can bring before the Supreme Court. When the conductor asks Homer Plessy if he is white, Homer admits that he is not, and after he refuses to leave the whites-only section, C.C. Cain dutifully arrests him and books him in New Orleans. He is brought before Judge Ferguson who rules that Louisiana has a right to regulate any train that travels within state lines. He fines Homer Plessy $25. Since the average wage is $1.60 a day, this is about 3-weeks wages. It is going to take some time for this case to go to the Supreme Court. During that time the composition of the Court will change and attitudes toward the mixing of blacks and whites will solidify. [9] [10] [11] [12] [13] [14] [15]

My Take by Alex Shrugged
In hindsight, they probably should have avoided the Supreme Court. The Court set standards for "separate but equal" racism. As long as the facilities provided were equal, blacks and whites could be separated. Jim Crow Laws separating blacks and whites were passed everywhere. (Jim Crow refers to a black-face minstrel show and the song "Jump Jim Crow" that was popular in the early 1800s.) The Supreme Court ruling became the excuse to provide "separate but UNEQUAL" public facilities such as separate but unequal restrooms, hotel rooms, restaurants, and schools. It brought the government into our lives at a fundamental level, forcing people to comply. Dr. Condi Rice, the former Secretary of State, tells of her school in Birmingham, Alabama. The children met in a basement with a dirt floor. They had state-approved textbooks, but they were tattered throwaways. She was able to learn something anyway, but it was the calculated insult that was at issue. It was government-supported racism that lasted over 60 years until Brown v. Board of Education in 1954. And this is yet another example of why I refuse to take my moral lessons from the Supreme Court. [16]

Notable Births

  • J. R. R. Tolkien (Author of Lord of the Rings). [17]
  • Oliver Hardy (From the Laurel and Hardy comedy team.) [18]
  • Charles Atlas (Body-builder, but now best known for the Rocky Horror Picture Show song, "I Can Make You a Man" with the Charles Atlas stamp of approval.) [19]

In Other News

  • Rudolf Diesel patents the Diesel engine. There is no spark plug! [20]
  • The Sierra Club is founded by John Muir. The goal is to create mountain parks like Yosemite. [21]
  • The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes is published. Basil Rathbone (born this year) will play Holmes in the movies. [22] [23]

This Year in Wikipedia

Year 1892, Wikipedia.

See Also


  1. The Pledge of Allegiance - A Short History. web.archive.org (1992). Archived from the original on February 1, 2015. Retrieved on 2 November 2016. “Francis Bellamy (1855 - 1931), a Baptist minister, wrote the original Pledge in August 1892. He was a Christian Socialist. In his Pledge, he is expressing the ideas of his first cousin, Edward Bellamy, author of the American socialist utopian novels, Looking Backward (1888) and Equality (1897).”
  2. The Pledge of Allegiance, USHistory.org, 2013 [last update]
  3. Pledge of Allegiance - Wikipedia, 2014 [last update]
  4. Francis Bellamy - Wikipedia, 2014 [last update]
  5. Bellamy salute - Wikipedia, 2014 [last update]
  6. Ellis Island - Wikipedia (2016). Retrieved on 2 November 2016. “The first station was an enormous three-story-tall structure, with outbuildings, built of Georgia pine, containing all of the amenities that were thought to be necessary. It opened with celebration on January 1, 1892. Three large ships landed on the first day and 700 immigrants passed over the docks. Almost 450,000 immigrants were processed at the station during its first year.”
  7. Bergman, Jerry (Spring 1997). "Modern Religious Objection to Mandatory Flag Salute in America: A History and Evaluation, The". Journal of Church and State (Oxford University Press) 39 (2): 215-236. http://www.jstor.org/stable/23919859. Retrieved 02 November 2016. "In the early 1890s, Youth's Companion Magazine, as part of a campaign designed to arouse patriotism in the country's youth set a goal that an American flag should wave "on or near all public schools." The editors also conceived the idea of establishing 12 October 1892, and each 12 October thereafter, a national holiday called "Columbus Day." The plan was later officially endorsed by the Nation Education Association of Superintendents (now the American Association of School Administrators) at their February 1892 convention in Brooklyn. This convention was also responsible for the custom requiring school children to recite in unison the Pledge of Alliegence.". 
  8. The Gods of the Copybook Headings - Wikipedia (2016). Retrieved on 3 November 2016. “'The Gods of the Copybook Headings' is a poem published by Rudyard Kipling in 1919, which, editor Andrew Rutherford said, contained 'age-old, unfashionable wisdom' that Kipling saw as having been forgotten by society and replaced by 'habits of wishful thinking.'”
  9. Plessy v. Ferguson - Wikipedia (2016). Retrieved on 2 November 2016. “On June 7, 1892, Plessy bought a first-class ticket at the Press Street Depot and boarded a 'whites only' car of the East Louisiana Railroad in New Orleans, Louisiana, bound for Covington, Louisiana. The railroad company, which had opposed the law on the grounds that it would require the purchase of more railcars, had been previously informed of Plessy's racial lineage, and the intent to challenge the law. Additionally, the committee hired a private detective with arrest powers to detain Plessy, to ensure that he would be charged for violating the Separate Car Act, as opposed to a vagrancy or some other offense.[6] After Plessy took a seat in the whites-only railway car, he was asked to vacate it, and sit instead in the blacks-only car. Plessy refused and was arrested immediately by the detective. As planned, the train was stopped, and Plessy was taken off the train at Press and Royal streets. Plessy was remanded for trial in Orleans Parish.”
  10. Plessy, Homer (1863-1925) - The Black Past: Remembered and Reclaimed. blackpast.org (2016). Retrieved on 3 November 2016. “Plaintiff for a landmark Supreme Court case, Homer A. Plessy was born on March 17, 1863 in New Orleans. He was a light-skinned Creole of Color during the post-reconstruction years. With the aid of the Comité des Citoyens, a black organization in New Orleans, Homer Plessy became the plaintiff in the famous Plessy v. Ferguson case decided by the US Supreme Court in May 1896. The decision established the 'separate but equal' policy that made racial segregation constitutional for the next six decades.”
  11. Plessy and Ferguson unveil plaque today marking their ancestors' actions. NOLA.com (February 11, 2009). Retrieved on 3 November 2016. “On June 7, 1892, Plessy bought a first-class ticket for the commuter train that ran to Covington, sat down in the car for white riders only and the conductor asked whether he was a colored man, Medley said. The committee also hired a private detective with arrest powers to take Plessy off the train at Press and Royal streets, to ensure that he was charged with violating the state's separate-car law.”
  12. Plessy v. Ferguson - US Law. law.cornell.edu (2016). Retrieved on 3 November 2016. “...that such railroad company was incorporated by the laws of Louisiana as a common carrier, and was not authorized to distinguish between citizens according to their race. But, notwithstanding this, petitioner was required by the conductor, under penalty of ejection from said train and imprisonment, to vacate said coach and occupy another seat in a coach assigned by said company for persons not of the white race, and for no other reason than that petitioner was of the colored race; that, upon petitioner's refusal to comply with such order, he was, with the aid of a police officer, forcibly ejected from said coach and hurried off to and imprisoned in the parish jail of New Orleans, and there held to answer a charge made by such officer to the effect that he was guilty of having criminally violated an act of the General Assembly of the State, approved July 10, 1890, in such case made and provided.”
  13. Plessy v. Ferguson - Wikipedia (2016). Retrieved on 3 November 2016. “In his case, Homer Adolph Plessy v. The State of Louisiana, Plessy's lawyers argued that the state law which required East Louisiana Railroad to segregate trains had denied him his rights under the Thirteenth and Fourteenth amendments of the United States Constitution,[8] which provided for equal treatment under the law. However, the judge presiding over his case, John Howard Ferguson, ruled that Louisiana had the right to regulate railroad companies while they operated within state boundaries.”
  14. Jim Crow/Jump Jim Crow - The Black Past: Remembered and Reclaimed. blackpast.org (2016). Retrieved on 3 November 2016. “An example of this influence came when the United States' special ambassador to Central America, John Lloyd Stephens, arrived in Merida on Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula in 1841. Upon his arrival a local brass band played Jump Jim Crow mistakenly thinking it was the national anthem of the United States. The popularity of Jump Jim Crow and the blackface form of entertainment also prompted many whites to refer to most black males routinely as Jim Crow.”
  15. Real Wages in Manufacturing, 1890-1914 (PDF) (1961). Retrieved on 3 November 2016.
  16. Jump Jim Crow - Blackface Song and Dance. YouTube.com (2016). Retrieved on 3 November 2016. “A recreation of the Jump Jim Crow refrain the way it was performed by Thomas Dartmouth 'Daddy' Rice (1808-60). This clip is so short I repeated it three times so you can get a good look. This is the only clip I've ever found that shows a performer singing and dancing the actual tune. This clip is from a Vitaphone musical featurette called 'Minstrel Days' (1941).”
  17. J. R. R. Tolkien - Wikipedia (2016). Retrieved on 3 November 2016. “an English writer, poet, philologist, and university professor who is best known as the author of the classic high-fantasy works The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings, and The Silmarillion.”
  18. Oliver Hardy - Wikipedia (2016). Retrieved on 3 November 2016. “an American comic actor famous as one half of Laurel and Hardy, the classic double act that began in the era of silent films and lasted 25 years, from 1927 to 1951. He appeared with his comedy partner Stan Laurel in 107 short films, feature films, and cameo roles.”
  19. Charles Atlas - Wikipedia (2016). Retrieved on 3 November 2016. “the developer of a bodybuilding method and its associated exercise program that was best known for a landmark advertising campaign featuring Atlas's name and likeness; it has been described as one of the longest-lasting and most memorable ad campaigns of all time.”
  20. Diesel engine - Wikipedia (2016). Retrieved on 2 November 2016. “1892: February 23, Rudolf Diesel obtained a patent (RP 67207) titled 'Arbeitsverfahren und Ausführungsart für Verbrennungsmaschinen' (Working Methods and Techniques for Internal Combustion Engines).”
  21. Sierra Club - Wikipedia (2016). Retrieved on 2 November 2016. “It was founded on May 28, 1892, in San Francisco, California, by the Scottish-American preservationist John Muir, who became its first president.”
  22. The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes - Wikipedia (2016). Retrieved on 2 November 2016. “The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes is a collection of twelve short stories by Arthur Conan Doyle, featuring his fictional detective Sherlock Holmes. It was first published on 14 October 1892; the individual stories had been serialised in The Strand Magazine between June 1891 and July 1892.”
  23. Basil Rathbone - Wikipedia (2016). Retrieved on 3 November 2016. “His most famous role, however, was heroic — that of Sherlock Holmes in fourteen Hollywood films made between 1939 and 1946 and in a radio series.”

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