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POLL: Do We Need a State Law Requiring Pledge of Allegiance in Schools?

House will consider joining Senate to make daily ceremonies mandatory.

We’re one nation, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all – a familiar phrase that some state legislators believe should be a required way for students to start each day.

The House Education Committee on Wednesday passed a bill to mandate Pledge of Allegiance ceremonies daily in public elementary and secondary schools. Students still could choose not to recite it.

A companion proposal, also sent to the full House, would require an American flag in each classroom.

"It's about the foundation of our country," Committee Chair Lisa Posthumus Lyons, a Republican, is quoted by Mlive Media Group as saying after this week’s vote. "It gets students thinking about the United States and what we stand for."

Democrats joined Republicans in voting 16-1 in favor of the Pledge bill and 15-2 to require flags.

Rep. Doug Geiss, D-Taylor, dissented on both votes. "I just don't know that it's a problem," he said, according to MLive. "Schools are reciting the pledge. And if you find one that’s not, take it up with the school board because it should be a board decision."

Michigan senators passed similar bills last November in a move to join 43 states requiring that pupils at least hear the Pledge each school day.

The issue, which has arisen around the country, was . David Holden, elected to the board last November, proposed a requirement that all students begin the day with the 19-word Pledge – not currently recited in the Washtenaw County district’s middle school or high school. "It works very well with some of the things we are trying to do to discourage bullying," he said Jan. 10. It was the original diversity document before people started talking about diversity."

The well-known Pledge was written in 1892 by Frank Bellamy, a Baptist minister from New York. Congress added the words "under God" in 1954.

What do you think? Tell us in the poll or comments below.

Sue Czarnecki June 11, 2012 at 05:44 PM
This is what the Republican legislature is doing with its time. I thought Michigan needed jobs.
Jan June 11, 2012 at 09:17 PM
Maybe,it time for a part-time state legislature
Alan Stamm June 11, 2012 at 10:25 PM
Mr. Helzer: Fair observation and question, so thanks for this chance to clarify. First, the pending legislation wouldn't compel each pupil to say the Pledge or salute the flag. It would require a daily Pledge ceremony, during which any student could decline to recite, to stand or to remain in the room. As for your other concern: The pending legislation covers charter schools, which are public institutions receiving state "foundation" (per-pupil) grants from the Michigan Department of Education. Parochial and private schools don't receive taxpayer support and are exempt from government control over curriculum and classroom activities. In the case of parochial eduction, the constitutional principle of church-state separation applies. Thanks for reading and commenting.
Jeffery Berz June 15, 2012 at 08:03 PM
What’s wrong with kids saying the Pledge of Allegiance? I wonder how many kids even know it these days. I think we need to get some values back into the schools and teach the children pride in America in spite of some of the shortcomings that are taking place across the country. People used to fly the flag and be proud. It would be great to see that happen again.
David Waggoner June 16, 2012 at 12:05 AM
This is just a political trick. Let kids say "and to the REPUBLIC, for which it stands" over and over again, so that whenit comes time to vote, they will associate the word with REPUBLICAN and thus vote that way in the future. Democrats will look unpatriotic if they vote against it. This should be handled at the district level. And most schools I know already say it.

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