Palin shows complete ignorance of US History

United States
September 1, 2008 11:58am CST
Here's a question posed to Palin, and her answer: "11. Are you offended by the phrase "Under God" in the Pledge of Allegiance? Why or why not? SP: Not on your life. If it was good enough for the founding fathers, its good enough for me and I'll fight in defense of our Pledge of Allegiance." --http://eagleforumalaska.blogspot.com/2006/07/2006-gubernatorial-candidate.html What Palin doesn't know is that the phrase "under God" in the Pledge of Allegiance was inserted in the 1954--not exactly in the "founding fathers" time range. They had no part in that alteration to the Pledge. In fact, the original Pledge itself was written in 1892, long after all the "founding fathers" were dead! It's one thing to be for keeping the phrase there, it's another entirely to use, as your argument for keeping it, total nonsense and fallacies that are easily proven untrue in 10 seconds of Googling.
2 people like this
15 responses
@lvaldean (1612)
• United States
1 Sep 08
I think most people do know if they study history. I know this because I study history, the Constitution, the Bill of Rights, the meaning of "God" in our Pledge, on our money, and within many of our institutions. The fact that many of our elected officials don't understand the first thing about the history of this country is sad. It is also the reason that we are in the mess that we are in.
3 people like this
@lvaldean (1612)
• United States
1 Sep 08
No this is just a small blurb. There will be many others along the way. This one just goes to show ignornace. Not just hers but many others in and out of public service. It is unfortunate that so many people don't understand the significance of the pledge, the significance of the Second Amendment of the Bill of Rights, the significance of what our Founding Fathers intentions were in seperating Church from State. It is truly unfortunate that so many believe that our Founding Fathers intended to create a "Christian" nation. They never did, they intended to create a secular government framed to represent the "best" ideas of Repulic and Democracy of the time. The never intended to create a theocracy, ever. They never intended to create a situation in which Christianity "ruled" over all other belief systems. Even Francis Bellamy, a Baptist minister and the author of the Pledge understood the intent of the Framers of the Consitution and left God out of the Pledge.
2 people like this
• United States
1 Sep 08
Tip of the hat to you, Ivaldean, well said and good response to Tallymommy as well.
1 person likes this
• United States
1 Sep 08
Ivaldean, it was a pleasure to read your post! So many people don't have a clue about our own country's history, never mind the rest of the world's. It's just a sad and scary thing!
1 person likes this
@xfahctor (14131)
• Lancaster, New Hampshire
1 Sep 08
I didn't know it either. does this show my "ignorance of history"? Did you know this already? I'll wager you wern't aware of it until you were pointed to a news story to use as a talking point. I have only your word to go on of course and I'm not going to just assume because someone is on the oposite side that it makes them automaicly a lier, so tell me, did you already know it? And are you certain she was refering to the line in the pledge? Or the ideal? Either way, this was the mentality of the founding fathers, "one nation under God". So even though she may have gaffed the specific answer or answered a specific question in a broader context than the question was posed in, she was still correct in her answer. But I guess it wont matter, a gaffe is a gaffe is a gaffe and I guess any amo is fair game.
2 people like this
• United States
1 Sep 08
You would lose your wager with me, X. I can tell you that I did know when the Pledge was written and that it was written by Francis Bellamy, a Baptist minister! I have known that for most of my life. I also have always known that "under God" was added in 1954; I was born later that year. In fact, I have talked about that in other discussions long before this.
1 person likes this
• United States
1 Sep 08
"I didn't know it either. does this show my "ignorance of history"?" The lack of knowledge about something like this is weighted more heavily in someone who is running for Vice President. I wouldn't think it any big deal if some random person didn't know (although maybe that's just because I've gotten used to the low 'bar' for US History knowledge among US citizens), but it is a bigger deal when you don't know the origin of a US tradition. "I'll wager you wern't aware of it until you were pointed to a news story to use as a talking point." Name your price, and I'll give you my Paypal address along with , I could use some quick money. :) Remember, the addition of "under God" occurred only about 50 years ago (I admit I had since forgotten the 1892 date for the origin, but that's much longer ago, isn't it? :P). I have a link at the ready to prove to you I knew that "under God" was not part of the original pledge. Still want to wager? :P "Either way, this was the mentality of the founding fathers, "one nation under God"" lol, no--the founding fathers made it abundantly clear that religion is and should remain a private matter, not an umbrella term to lump all people in with. Many of the founding fathers weren't even Christian themselves--Thomas Jefferson, for one, was so disgusted with the mysticism and superstition in the Bible that he wrote his own version that left all the miracles and stuff like that out. http://www.infidels.org/library/modern/ed_buckner/quotations.html "she was still correct in her answer." Nope.
2 people like this
@xfahctor (14131)
• Lancaster, New Hampshire
1 Sep 08
which was why I asked you if you did or not, I said I had only your word to go by, all you had to do was give it to me, you did so I take your word. Aparently my daughter also knew this, though the several other people I asked seeing this thread did not. Does this disqualify her from the vp position? nope. does it sway me away from my support of McCain? nope. The fact remains, that though the founders wanted to keep religion and government seperate in some ways, that the country was founded on religious freedom principals and many throughout the forming of the country used His name quite freely in argument and debate. I'm sure you know, given your knowlege of history, that the term seperation of church and state was not in the consitution. I am also sure you know that the ideology in the constitution was that government should not create any laws that inhibited the free practice of one's religion, including congress.
2 people like this
• United States
1 Sep 08
rofl! That is so sad, really; and yet so darned funny. I am not in the least bit surprised by it. Unfortunately, most people in this country think that phrase was always in the pledge; I hope most of them don't think that it was written by our founding fathers, though! I really like that she is willing to "fight in defense" of it. How comforting. I'm going to be doing a lot of praying in the next two months!
2 people like this
@xfahctor (14131)
• Lancaster, New Hampshire
1 Sep 08
I didn't know the line was added later either. And say a prayer for me, as I am willing to fight for it's ideology too, and I'm not even christian.
2 people like this
• United States
1 Sep 08
Count yourself lucky in that you learned something new today! Cheers to your daughter for knowing it already! By the way, the original pledge was: "I pledge allegiance to my Flag and the Republic for which it stands, one nation, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all." In 1924, the American Legion and the DAR changed the wording to: "to the flag of the United States of America." Bellamy protested, but was ignored.
1 person likes this
@mikinikih (201)
• United States
2 Sep 08
While the founding fathers may not have had the pledge of allegiance, other documents (like the Constitution) use God in their verbiage; it was very clear that most of the founding fathers were members of the protestant christian church. So just because she misspoke doesn't mean she is completely ignorant of history. Especially when put on the spot. When it comes down to it, I'll do my research if I have access to the questions beforehand, but when I need to give an immediate answer, all the details from that 7th grade US history class probably won't be anywhere near the forefront of my head.
• United States
2 Sep 08
"other documents (like the Constitution) use God in their verbiage" http://www.usconstitution.net/constnot.html#god "it was very clear that most of the founding fathers were members of the protestant christian church." The personal affiliation of the founding fathers has nothing to do with the clear fact that they clearly intended there to be a "wall of separation" that allows both religion and government to function properly without interference. As for answering a question on the spot, if she didn't know the origin of the Pledge and stuff, why didn't she just end her response after the first sentence? Like I said, there's a BIG difference between not knowing and making things up when you don't know.
1 person likes this
@Latrivia (2889)
• United States
2 Sep 08
In her defense, a lot of people don't know. I didn't know until later in my high school years, when someone corrected me on it. I honestly don't know what McCain was thinking when he chose her, but he obviously thinks he knows her character well enough to put her in the position of runner-up for the presidency. Perhaps he was looking for a "uber-conservative" to win the votes of the people further to the right than him. He could have made a better choice, in my opinion. I don't like anything about the woman or her political views.
2 people like this
@mcat19 (1358)
• United States
1 Sep 08
Ya know what makes me smile? Among all the things that make Palin unqualified for Veep, this is one of many. We should all know history. But she is running for Veep, so she should have a better grasp of facts. She has narrow views that don't reflect the majority of women or of Americans. I feel sorry for her; she's over her head.
2 people like this
@ZephyrSun (7385)
• United States
1 Sep 08
lol at least McCain and Palin can not know history together. Hey maybe she knows geography and he may know some history and they can teach each other lmao.
1 person likes this
• United States
1 Sep 08
I know you're joking, but 'it's okay to pick Palin because she'll learn on the job' has ACTUALLY been used as an argument to defend McCain's left-field VP pick (since the universal reaction to it was "huh?").
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@ZephyrSun (7385)
• United States
1 Sep 08
Oh yes but Obama can't learn as he goes. And his law degree means nothing because you know as well as I do that all presidents have had a journalism degree not a law degree.
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@Taskr36 (13925)
• United States
1 Sep 08
Obama shouldn't be learning as he goes because he's running for president, not vice president. While there's a chance Palin may be in charge one day if McCain is elected, it's a guarantee that Obama will be in charge immediately if he is elected. Why can't people see the difference?
1 person likes this
• United States
2 Sep 08
I could be wrong but I think she was referencing the fact that our country was built on men who believed in God (our founding fathers). I don't think she meant that they wrote the Pledge of Allegiance, but like I said, I could be wrong, she is the only one who knows what thoughts run through her mind, just like the rest of us. I don't think we should just assume that she meant the founding fathers wrote the Pledge of Allegiance. That is why the phrase is in there isn't it? Its a reference to the fact that this country was built on a belief in God and freedom, which is what our founding fathers worked for.
1 person likes this
@rodney850 (2145)
• United States
2 Sep 08
Runner, I was reading this discussion and hadn't really intended on commenting at all since I believed this to be just a petty and trite misdirection discussion by an obvious liberal athiest/agnostic! With your comment I just couldn't help commending you on such insight at such a young age! Yes, our founding fathers did intend on preserving religious freedoms and what many people (ClarusVisum included)fail to consider is the reason the American settlers or pioneers or what ever anyone chooses to call them actually came to America for and that was to escape religious persecution! So if that was the reason (for the most part and taught in history classes at least when I went through the school system)then it would only be a safe deduction that "under God" was what was predominately in their thinking! So, no, I don't believe you are wrong and neither will any conservatives here on MyLot but I'm sure ClarusVisum will have his rebuttal! Again, great comment!
2 people like this
@ZephyrSun (7385)
• United States
2 Sep 08
rodney, "Yes, our founding fathers did intend on preserving religious freedoms and what many people (ClarusVisum included)fail to consider is the reason the American settlers or pioneers or what ever anyone chooses to call them actually came to America for and that was to escape religious persecution! " I have said this all along but all the "Christians" fail to realize this, and fail to realize there are religions beyond the Christian base. But, Conservative Christians do not care about that, they continue to say that it's against God to have an abortion, but they don't care that there are some people that don't believe in a god/gods.
2 people like this
• United States
2 Sep 08
ZephyrSun, I would just like to mention that at 13 I was raped by an adult male whom I thought I could trust and became pregnant. At the time I did not believe in God but I still did not believe that I had any choice but to keep the baby because I believe each person deserves a chance to live regardless of the circumstances. I ended up having a miscarriage because my body was unable to handle the pregnacy. Regardless, any unborn child would have become a person if it had not been aborted. Whether or not you believe the child is currently alive does not matter, it might one day be alive and deserves the same chance all of us here today got. And for the record I am not a Christian. Nor am I conservative on all issues, only on some, including abortion obviously. I have been there, i know how scary it is to be a young girl in that situation but it is not the fetus's fault.
2 people like this
@irishidid (8717)
• United States
2 Sep 08
We get it. You're an Obama groupie and you think he's the best thing since sliced bread and walks on water. So go on and vote for him. Finding petty things on the other party is just that, petty.
1 person likes this
• United States
2 Sep 08
I just hold candidates to a higher standard than you do. I expect Presidents and Vice Presidents to know stuff like this, but if they don't, I expect them to at LEAST not INVENT U.S. history in lieu of knowledge. Do you really think that's too much to ask? It's petty for me to criticize a candidate for MAKING THINGS UP about this country's history?
1 person likes this
@irishidid (8717)
• United States
2 Sep 08
You have absolutely no idea to what standard I hold candidates. You say she made up the statement she made about the pledge. Surprisingly from reading the rest of the posts so did a lot of mylot people. Still petty no matter how you try to make it not be.
2 people like this
@N4life (851)
• United States
3 Sep 08
McCain and Palin can do no wrong, they are Marxists ready to take over the world! OMG
@xfahctor (14131)
• Lancaster, New Hampshire
1 Sep 08
Is this as bad as Obama voting against a war in Iraq that was voted on when he wasn't even in congress yet?
1 person likes this
• United States
1 Sep 08
Huh? 1. Obama didn't vote on Iraq, and never claimed to. 2. Obama was, however, against the invasion of Iraq from the beginning--he made a public and well-documented speech to that effect before we invaded: http://en.wikisource.org/wiki/Barack_Obama's_Iraq_Speech http://www.barackobama.com/2002/10/02/remarks_of_illinois_state_sen.php
1 person likes this
@xfahctor (14131)
• Lancaster, New Hampshire
1 Sep 08
That was directed towards some of his supporters in here that I have seen make this claim, i should have been more clear on that.
2 people like this
• United States
1 Sep 08
I've mentioned something about this in one of my discussion in defense of people trying to say then why did Obama and Biden support the war in the beginning then, where I corrected them by saying that Biden did vote in Oct 02 giving his ok to go ahead with the war but EVERYONE trusted the competence of the Bush Administration at that time, 9/11 changed how millions viewed the world at that time and Bush's scare tactics caught many off guard. Obama could not vote because he wasnt even in the US Senate at that time but has said he would of surely voted against it.
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@soooobored (1187)
• United States
2 Sep 08
Having a detailed, easily referenced knowledge of history is a completely different skill set than what is required for running a country. To run a country, you need to be able to research problems, understand relationships, delegate appropriately, etc. For me, this mistake isn't a reflection of her ability to lead a country. Any doubts I would have about that would come from somewhere else, but not knowing a fact about the origins of the Pledge of Allegiance is not the end of the world, for me.
1 person likes this
• United States
3 Sep 08
I hope I don't have to keep repeating this: "if she didn't know the origin of the Pledge and stuff, why didn't she just end her response after the first sentence? Like I said, there's a BIG difference between not knowing and making things up when you don't know."
• United States
3 Sep 08
It's an easy error to make, I would have assumed it stands as the original way it was written, too.
1 person likes this
• India
17 Oct 08
While it is a fact that no one can store all the knowledge in his brain it is reasonable expected a reasonable skill from a person who claims to be eligible for an elite office like VP.In an interview palin could not answer the simple questions on americal foriegn policy and she even didn't seem to have heard of the BUSH DOCTRINE of premptive military intervention.
1 person likes this
@nishdan01 (3055)
• Singapore
2 Sep 08
Well, at times people make mistakes when asked in haste. Afterall, Palin was less known out of her state. Not everyone is perfect in knowledge. You and I can make mistakes. So forget such silly issues. Fouding fathers or formerly ruling fathers are all the same as they have contributed to the nation and the current citizens and rulers learn from the past.
• United States
2 Sep 08
I willing to give her chance. Sure she going to make little mistakes, but one thing for fact she will intresting to watch. Sometimes people are appointed by God. When this happen no man can remove him or her.
• United States
2 Sep 08
Assuming God exists, why would he give a damn about American politics? And wouldn't him "appointing" someone to be President in such a way that "no man can remove him or her" interfere with that supposed "free will" we humans are supposed to have?
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@ZephyrSun (7385)
• United States
2 Sep 08
Bravo Visum!
1 person likes this
• United States
2 Sep 08
Sound as if you are a unbeliever. Sorry it must be miserable without knowing true peace. Please don't be angry and no profanity, but if you seek Him you shall find Him(God). He exists. I did 8 years ago I was lost in my sin. I felt His calling and I reponded. It was the best thing that happen to my life, marriage, kids and on and on. It seems to get better life goes on.
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@coolseeds (3921)
• United States
13 Oct 08
Yes this is great. She just talks, usually in circles avoiding the topic altogether. LOL I think she would make a better vp for Obama. It would be the Hope and Clueless campaign. But they have one thing in common, their words are bulls!t.
• United States
13 Oct 08
You know, "bullsit" is not a curse, lol. If BSing is the criteria, McCain is the undisputed champion, using "I was a POW" as an excuse for basically every stupid thing he does or says. "...for those keeping score at home, the McCain campaign has now referenced the senator's P.O.W. background in response to questions about McCain's marital infidelities; his healthcare plan; his opinion of Pittsburgh; his response to allegations he may have heard the questions in advance of Rick Warren's recent candidate forum; his distaste for earmarks; and his taste in music. What's more, in late August, McCain appeared on "The Tonight Show" last night, and Jay Leno joked about McCain's confusion over how many houses he owns. McCain responded by pointing to -- you guessed it -- his background as a former prisoner of war during Vietnam." -- http://www.washingtonmonthly.com/archives/individual/2008_10/015148.php
@coolseeds (3921)
• United States
13 Oct 08
Technically the "How many houses do you own?" is a loaded question. Any answer would have been wrong unless he gave more than one answer. Which would mean that he doesn't know where he stands. Did they mean how many houses do you personally own? Or how many houses do you and your wife own? What does the number of houses a person owns have to do with being the president anyway? If you asked me how many vehicles I owned I would have to think and count them. I think I have 8. But not sure. I rarely drive unless I am working.