Thursday, June 7, 2007

The 'Renewal' Of Allegiance .....

I went to a Soroptimist function recently ... my first ever. (I had quite a good streak going there of never having attended one, too. I guess it had to be broken sometime. Though, I am jealous of an acquaintance that had his 83 year streak broken.) It was a luncheon in honor of an individual for her selfless contributions over the years to the organization.

After a welcome and invocation, we were asked to recite a 'renewal of allegiance' as was customary at Soroptimist's functions.

Can anyone tell me what in the world a 'renewal of allegiance' is? I'd never heard of such a thing. Since being a tot in school, I've always known our salute to the flag of the United States of America as The Pledge of Allegiance. When did Francis Bellamy's 1892 'pledge' become a 'renewal'? Who decided the pledge - officially recognized as the official national pledge in 1945 - was to be revised and recognized as a 'renewal'? Did I go on vacation and miss some history?

It just so happened I was sitting next to a teacher while at the luncheon. I turned and asked him: "When did The Pledge of Allegiance become the 'renewal of allegiance'?"

I was told: "Beats me. I've always known it to be The Pledge of Allegiance."

So. Here we go. Let's put on our thinking caps, shall we? Come on .... get down and dirty with me and and let's see what all this 'renew' and 'renewal' gibberish is all about. Whaddaya say?

Let's see if any of'em apply to 'renewal of allegiance' per the definitions .....

renewal: n. 1. a renewing or being renewed; 2. an instance of renewing or something renewed

renew: n. 1 to make new or as if new again; 2. to give new spiritual strength to; 3. to cause to exist again; reestablish; revive; 4. to begin again; take up again; 5. to replace as as by a fresh supply of

Let's start with 'renewal' .....

renewal, definition #1: 'a renewing or being renewed' What? Did you lose something? Are you renewing your allegiance? This would imply you lost or misplaced it, right? Nope. Doesn't apply .....

renewal, definition #2: 'an instance of renewing or something renewed' Again, did you lose your allegiance to the flag? I don't think so. Nope. Doesn't apply .....

Okay. Here we go with with 'renew' .....

renew, definition #1: 'to make new or as if new again' Unless you got in an accident and lost your memory, I don't think so. Nope. Doesn't apply .....

renew, definition #2: 'to give new spiritual strength to' Who said anything about spirituality in reciting The Pledge Of Allegiance? You're not giving spiritual strength when you do so - you're simply giving your pledge of allegiance to your country. Nope. Doesn't apply .....

renew, definition #3: 'to cause to exist again; reestablish; revive' Again, unless you lost your memory, I don't think so, Tim ..... Nope. Doesn't apply .....

renew, definition #4: 'to begin again; take up again' Well .... to be honest, each time you say The Pledge of Allegiance, you are 'beginning again' to say it. But that's not exactly the meaning of 'begin again' where The Pledge Of Allegiance applies ..... Nope. Doesn't apply .....

renew, definition #5: 'to replace as by a fresh supply of' Yeah, right. There are so many pledge of allegiances out there, even I get confused. Whatter you ... GOOFY?!? Nope. Doesn't apply .....

Bottom Line: Unless aliens came down and wiped your mind clean ... or unless you changed allegiance to a different country then came back to the wonderful U.S. of A., you're not 'renewing' anything when you recite The Pledge of Allegiance.

*yeesh*

The Next Day: The Pi├Ęce De Resistance .....

I got through via the phone to the president of this particular chapter of Soroptimists. As nice as I could be, I asked her what the story was with putting in their program the 'Renewal Of Allegiance' as opposed to the correct Pledge Of Allegiance. Her response was that she didn't exactly know. Somewhere down the line someone - another member of the Soroptimists - had told her to do it that way. She stated this person told her 'you're 'renewing' your allegiance to the flag when you're saying it'.

I explained this was just not the case. You aren't renewing anything. You're simply stating a pledge of allegiance to the United States of America when you recite The Pledge of Allegiance. There's no 'renewal' involved; it's a patriotic pledge to your country.

I could just about hear the light bulb above her head come to life. She stated that in light of this conversation (there was more, but you get the gist of it) she would be delving into when and where the Soroptimists had revised The Pledge of Allegiance and she would happily contact me with that information. I told her I would appreciate that, because whoever revised the title was misinformed and dead wrong.

I thanked her for her time and understanding and she thanked me for querying her about the situation.

See? Every once in a while, there's justice in the world.

One person at a time .......................... Ruprecht ( STOP )

No comments: