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Published On: Tue, Sep 9th, 2014

Atheists target ‘under God’ in Pledge of Alliegiance with ‘Don’t Say the Pledge’ campaign

An atheist group is launching a nationwide campaign aimed at removing the words “under God” from the Pledge of Allegiance. The American Humanist Association announced the launch of the “Don’t Say the Pledge” campaign Monday.

The goal is to utlize social media and traditional advertising campaign to encourage Americans to refuse to recite the Pledge of Allegiance until God’s name is taken out.

The Don't Say the Pledge movement calls on the removal of "Under God"  photo/YouTube

The Don’t Say the Pledge movement calls on the removal of “Under God” photo/YouTube

Ads placed on YouTube and on buses in New York City and Washington D.C. will direct people to visit the DontSaythePledge.com website, where historical information on the recitation and related resources are being made available, according to a press release.

Check out the clip below.

“Until the Pledge is restored to its inclusive version, we can take it upon ourselves to refuse to participate in what’s become a discriminatory exercise,” the website reads. “Stand up for America by sitting down during the Pledge of Allegiance until the inclusive version is restored.”

David Niose, the American Humanist Association’s legal director, said in a statement that public schools are “stigmatizing atheist and humanist children” by facilitating the daily recitation of the Pledge. So, his group is arguing that students should exercise their right not to participate.

“[It] violates the principles of equal rights and nondiscrimination,” he said of the daily recitation.

The atheist group’s main contention is that “under God” was not added to the Pledge until 1954 and that the original version, composed in 1892 by Francis Bellamy, a Baptist minister, did not reference the Lord. They advocate for a return to the more secular version of the proclamation.

The “Don’t Say the Pledge” campaign comes just days after the organization released a survey claiming that more than one-third of Americans now support removing “under God” from the text.

 

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