National Pledge of Allegiance Day

Photo by Samuel Branch

On January 14, 1969, comedian Red Skelton shifted gears on his popular TV show. He recited the Pledge of Allegiance and added the meaning of words and phrases as he did so. His presentation warmed the hearts of millions of Americans then, and it remains popular on YouTube even today.

The Pledge of Allegiance was originally written in 1892 to mark the 400th anniversary of Christopher Columbus’ arrival in the Americas. Several variations were used nationwide. On June 22, 1942, six months after the U.S. entered World War II, President Franklin Roosevelt signed the U.S. Flag Code, and a standardized version was finally recognized.

Then on Flag Day, June 14, 1954, President Dwight Eisenhower signed a bill that inserted the phrase, “under God” in the United States Pledge of Allegiance. Two years later, “In God We Trust” became the United States’ official motto.

I recognize that children reciting the Pledge of Allegiance every day in school is a past relic… along with learning cursive or how to read a non-digital clockface. (Not all that we may deem as progress involves forward motion.)

We remain a very young nation… one with many strengths and many frailties. (We humans tend to remain dreadfully slow to evolve.)

As life flies past on a daily basis, we do not often stop to realize how much (and also how little) has happened during our brief tenure on this dear planet. I try to take each little reminder to heart and count my blessings.

About Cathy Burnham Martin

Author of 20+ books, and counting! A professional voice-over artist, dedicated foodie, and lifelong corporate communications geek, Cathy Burnham Martin has enjoyed a highly eclectic career, ranging from the arts and journalism to finance, telecommunications, and publishing. Along with her husband, Ron Martin, she has passions for entertaining, gardening, volunteering, active and visual arts, GREAT food, and traveling. Cathy often says, "I believe that we all should live with as much contagious enthusiasm as possible... Whether we're with friends or family, taking people along for the ride is more than half the fun."
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