In a case that was trying to determine if the words, “Under God” should be removed from the Pledge of Allegiance; a New Jersey high school student proves and wins her case to keep the controversial words part of the schools daily recital.
The student who won her case was Samantha Jones, who is a senior at Highland Regional High School. She believes that she has protected her fellow students, who wish to continue reciting the pledge in its entirety.
The American Humanist Association were the ones who initially wanted to remove “under God” from the Pledge, and the legal battle started when a family from Monmouth County opposed to the words.
According to local papers, the family named as John and Jane Doe and their child, sued the Matawan-Aberdeen Regional School District back in 2014. They believed the words are discriminatory to those who do not believe in God.
The family told Fox News that the passage, “acknowledges that our rights don’t come from the government but from a higher power, so they can’t take away the rights. I don’t think that it’s as much about religion as it is about our rights. Everyone has the right to remain silent but they don’t have the right to silence everybody else.”
Despite what this family believes, Jones shared her appreciation stating, “I’m so grateful the court decided that kids like me shouldn’t be silenced just because some people object to timeless American values. Ever since I was little, I’ve recited the Pledge of Allegiance because it sums up the values that make our country great. The phrase ‘under God’ protects all Americans-including atheists-because it reminds the government that it can’t take away basic human rights because it didn’t create them.”
Deputy General Counsel for the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty, Eric Rassbach gave her opinion about the phrase saying, “The message today is loud and clear: “God” is not a dirty word. The Pledge of Allegiance isn’t a prayer, and reciting it doesn’t magically create an official state religion.” She continued by stating, “The Pledge-in the tradition of Washington’s Farewell Address or Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address-is not a prayer to God, but a statement about who we are as a nation. Dissenters have every right to sit out the Pledge, but they can’t silence everyone else.”
The school stated that they are following school and state guidelines and that they are not being unfair to those who do not believe in God because they have the choice not to recite the words.
Photo: Ashley Peskoe / NJ Advance Media for NJ.com
Have a tip we should know? firstname.lastname@example.org