Thursday, October 07, 2010

No Pledge, No Service

A lawyer in Mississippi has been found in contempt of court for refusing to say the Pledge of Allegiance:
Lampley told The Northeast Mississippi Daily Journal he respected the judge but wasn't going to back down.

"I don't have to say it because I'm an American," Lampley told the newspaper. "I'm just not going to back off on this."
Jurisprudence in the United States has long held that the Pledge of Allegiance cannot be made mandatory (most recently in Lane v. Owens in 2003, where the ACLU sued the state of Colorado over a new state law requiring schoolchildren to recite the Oath), but admittedly almost all of that caselaw is based around reciting the Pledge in schools.

That having been said, it's hard to argue that rights of dissent and free expression given to schoolchildren cannot also apply to those present in a court of law.

(Unless the judge rules otherwise?)
- Christopher Bird, Toronto

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