The late Red Skelton related this story of how
his favorite childhood teacher, Mr. Laswell, helped his class understand the words to our
Pledge of Allegiance. It seems that Mr. Laswell was concerned that saying that pledge had
become just one more classroom chore, and he wanted to breathe some life into those words.
In the words of Red Skelton:
"I've been listening to you boys and girls recite the Pledge of Allegiance all
semester," said Mr. Laswell, "and it seems as though it is becoming monotonous
to you. May I recite it and try to explain to you the meaning of each word?"
"I" me, an individual, a committee of one.
"Pledge" dedicate all of my worldly goods to give without self-pity.
"Allegiance" my love and my devotion.
"To the flag" our standard, Old Glory, a symbol of freedom. Wherever
she waves, there's respect because your loyalty has given her a dignity
that shouts freedom is everybody's job!
"Of the United" that means that we have all come together.
"States of America" individual communities that have united into 48
great states. Forty-eight individual communities with pride and dignity
and purpose; all divided with imaginary boundaries, yet united to a common
purpose, and that's love for country.
"And to the republic" a state in which sovereign power is invested in
representatives chosen by the people to govern. And government is the
people and it's from the people to the leaders, not from the leaders to
"For which it stands, one nation" one nation, meaning "so blessed by
"Indivisible" incapable of being divided.
"With liberty" which is freedom the right of power to live one's
life without threats, fear or some sort of retaliation.
"And justice" the principle or quality of dealing fairly with others.
"For all" which means, boys and girls, it's as much your country as it
Since I was a small boy, two states have been added to our country and two words have
been added to the Pledge of Allegiance... "UNDER GOD" Wouldn't it be a pity if
someone said that is a prayer and that would be eliminated from schools too? God Bless