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Persuasive speech


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This is an outline for a persuasive speech I did in speech class that said that students should not be forced to say the pledge of allegiance.

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Persuasive speech

  1. 1. Pledge of Allegiance I. Introduction A. How many of you really look forward to saying the pledge of allegiance? B. Controversy, many court cases II. Body A. Violates the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment 1. Jehovah's Witnesses a group whose beliefs preclude swearing loyalty to any power lesser than God. 2. 1940 Supreme Court case Minersville School District vs. Gobitis held that a school district's interest in promoting national unity permitted it to require Jehovah's Witness students to recite the Pledge along with their classmates. 3. Unpopular decision in the press, led to a rash of mob violence and intimidation against Jehovah's Witnesses; three years later in West Virginia State Board of Education vs. Barnette, the Court reversed itself, voting 6-3 to forbid a school from requiring the Pledge. 4. As a result, since 1943 public schools have been disallowed from punishing students for not reciting the Pledge. Nonetheless, it remains taught to and expected of children in many schools, as the Court leaves many details in such matters up to respective state governments. B. The Pledge promotes a socialist state 1. Francis Bellamy, the author of the Pledge, was a former Baptist minister who preached that Jesus was a socialist. He was ideologically allied with his cousin, Edward Bellamy, one of the most renowned socialists of the late 19th century. 2. Provided the opportunity to write a pledge to the American flag in a campaign to sell flags to public schools 3. Turned to the words and principles of socialism. If American youth could to be taught “loyalty to the State”, it would pave the way for the socialist utopia that Edward Bellamy had described. 4. The central idea of “one nation” in the pledge was especially important for achieving his vision of the kind of consolidated, monopoly government necessary for a socialism to be adopted. C. The mandatory recital of what amounts to an oath, particularly by children, led by government employees in public schools, is a form of compulsory speech, amounting to indoctrination, that is the antithesis of the liberty the flag itself represents. 1. Justices Black and Douglas wrote in a concurring opinion, "Words uttered under coercion are proof of loyalty to nothing but self-interest. Love of country must spring from willing hearts and free minds, inspired by a fair administration of wise laws enacted by the people's elected representatives within the bounds of express constitutional prohibitions." III. Conclusion A. Violates the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment, incompatible with democracy and freedom, and pledges of allegiance are features of totalitarian states like Nazi Germany