One nation, under God, in English only

You have got to be kidding me.

Fury is brewing at Rocky Mountain High School, in Colorado, after a multicultural student group were encouraged to recite the Pledge of Allegiance over the loudspeaker in Arabic – replacing ‘one nation under God’ with ‘one nation under Allah’.


Oh noes. Teh Muslins. I can’t even summon exclamation points for this crap anymore.

Basically, a group of students at a Colorado High School, who have previously done readings of the Pledge of Allegiance in different languages did one in Arabic. They were also striving for linguistic correctness and used the proper Arabic word for “God,” which happens to be “Allah.” Parents freaked out because they think the school is trying to force a Muslim agenda on their kids, but principal Tom Lopez is actually, you know, being an educator and standing by the kids and his decision to let them read the pledge in Arabic. He’s right and so are the kids.

The argument against the Arabic reading is basically that saying the pledge in anything other than English is unpatriotic.


English isn’t native to this country. It didn’t evolve here. It’s not even the official language of the US—it’s just the common tongue. I have issues with the idea of a pledge of allegiance anyway, but if it is to be recited, there is no legal or logical reason why it should be recited in English and English only.

Of course, the real reason for the freakout is that “God” in Arabic becomes “Allah,” and we certainly can’t have kids saying that in school. None of the parents will admit their reaction is a racist one, but at this high school, the pledge has been read in both Spanish and French before, and no such stink was apparently raised. So why is Arabic such a big deal?

Because Muslims.

Dios is Spanish for “god,” dieu is French. That’s just what people call their deity in those languages. But Allah, no, that’s a terrorist monkey moon god. Teh horrzorz!

This is stupid for multiple reasons. “Allah” is how Arabic-speaking Jews and Christians commonly refer to their god, too. We don’t say “one nation under Yahweh.” The pledge uses a generic term (one that’s discriminatory against nonbelievers and doesn’t need to be there at all, but that’s another fight). In addition, I’m assuming that the students read a translation of the pledge into Modern Standard Arabic, which is very different from Classical Koranic Arabic, the Arabic of the 7th century. If we are to not read the pledge in anything but English, how about Old English, the English of the 7th century? Or would that be unacceptable because we’d be one nation under Dryhten?

Or, hey, here’s an idea, take god out of the Pledge of Allegiance entirely and never have to deal with “teh muslim” issue at all. Sure, people will still be pissed if it gets done in anything but pure American English (incidentally, there’s no such thing), but fuck those guys.

About nkrishna

I own this site.
This entry was posted in Language, Politics, Religion and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.
Add Comment Register

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *