Liberty and Justice Has Never Been For All
I Pledge Allegiance to the flag
of the United States of America
and to the Republic
for which it stands,
one Nation under God,
with liberty and justice for all
~ America’s Pledge of Allegiance
America does not offer liberty and justice for all. She never has. I often wonder if the God the pledge creator is referencing is asking for his name to be removed, for surely he knows it is a lie. America’s actions towards people of color, in particular, Black people, and America’s words have always been in direct conflict with one another. White Supremacy has never felt like we deserved justice, and Black lives in America have never enjoyed the same liberties as White lives.
It’s absurd to believe the nonsense of liberty and justice, and it’s ridiculous for people to bully Black people into believing otherwise.
Black people in America have always sought the same state of social, political, and economic freedoms (liberty) White people have for simply being born. Liberty is a lie.
There are so many invisible strings and ties keeping Black people trapped, ensnared, and enslaved.
All Men Weren’t Free And Still Aren’t Equal
The second paragraph of the United States Declaration of Independence starts as follows:
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed,
During the same year, abolitionist Thomas Day wrote:
“If there be an object truly ridiculous in nature, it is an American patriot, signing resolutions of independency with the one hand, and with the other brandishing a whip over his affrighted slaves.”
Thomas Day saw right through the hypocrisy of the statement, knowing full well most if not all the men crafting the guiding document owned people who in fact were not free. All men don’t unalienable rights. There are no just powers to be derived. We have always been governed without true consent.
Whiteness has always determined who received justice. White Supremacy has always established or determined the rights of Blacks according to their own unjust rules of law or equity. America has never given all men equal rights, nor has she treated all men equally. If liberty and justice was for all, we would’ve never had Jim Crow, Slave Codes, Black Codes, Indian Wars, Exclusion Acts, the Ku Klux Klan, a Trail of Tears, church bombings, cross burnings, redlining, gerrymandering, the repeal of open carry laws preventing blacks from protecting themselves, or racist Gun Control Acts that favored White carriers and actions.
America has done plenty to affect the liberties of Black Americans.
We Black people don’t really know what liberty is, most of us just think we do. We’ve been told we have the same rights, freedoms and liberties as White Americans, but we know we don’t. Even White people will admit Blacks don’t, but many still insist we say the Pledge of Allegiance.
Hell, White people should even question pledging allegiance to a lie, but since their privilege, power, liberty, and justice aren’t impacted all that much, they pledge on. Just because they still do it, doesn’t make it true.
Liberty and justice isn’t for all.
Justice for us has always been fleeting. America and her White Supremacy has beaten Black folks into submission using intimidation, propaganda, bullying, cross burnings, isolation, segregation, exclusion, and many other covert tools, laws, and plans to deny America’s most persecuted people’s liberty and justice.
There is no refuge for America’s favorite punching bags.
As far as justice is concerned, Whiteness has never maintained or administered justice in America impartially, nor has America fairly presided without bias over conflicting claims where Black lives are concerned. America has also never assigned merited rewards or punishments equally. The scales of justice have always seemed to tilt in favor of White people, even in 2019.
Most American judges administering justice are White, and because of this, White judges tend to see Blacks as being more criminal than Whites, justice is served with that same mindset, even if and when all factors are the same. Racial bias stifles the justice and liberties of People of Color all the time.
America’s Pledge of Allegiance is a lie. It’s propaganda force-fed to Black people.. It’s brainwashing. It’s mind control. Liberty and justice for all is a Black man’s dream and Black man’s nightmare.
Pledge of Allegiance Protest Bullies
No one should be forced to believe in something that’s not true, especially not Black Americans. White Americans should stop bullying and gaslighting People of Color into pledging allegiance to the flag when America has failed time and time again to deliver liberty and justice equally amongst all the citizens of this country. Our Black history in America is not the same as your history in America, and because we are self-aware, we understand this.
We cannot forget our history no matter how hard White people try to erase it from the history books. Instead of questioning our attitudes, our lack of desire to pledge allegiance to a rag, our perceptions, our memories, or our sanity, White people should educate themselves with real American history, discover their bloody heritages, examine their fears and biases, look at those family trees, trace those crooked roots, and check those apathetic attitudes.
Level up and acknowledge your racial bias. The fact many White people are unable or unwilling to acknowledge the scales of justice are imbalanced and liberty has been fleeting for Blacks despite all the research conducted by your beloved White institutions is a sign of your explicit bias. Every White person in America should shows examine their vision of what they believe America is and please by all means check all of your privileges and liberties. You’ll soon discover…
Liberty and justice is not for all.
America Can No Longer Hide The Truth
White people can no longer question or ignore our memories, perceptions, and even our sanity. We are not crazy. We Black Americans have not forgotten our history despite what Whiteness has done to erase it.
No Black person should ever be bullied into pledging allegiance to the flag. We have the right to question America’s statement that all men are created equal. We also have the right to profess when we are not all treated equally or not allowed to live, breath, work free from oppression.
Black men and women have served and died in every war America has fought despite discrimination, unattainable justice, and fleeting liberty. These men and women have fought for a flag representing a nation where liberty and justice was in fact not for all, but they did it anyway because they loved this country. They do it because they love this country even though it doesn’t love them back. Many do it because it’s honorable per White standards. Black people are forever trying to prove to White America they are decent human beings. We are decent.
But nothing we do will ever be enough to prove this to America. So we continue to fight — striving to reach goalposts that are continually moved. Until we achieve liberty and justice, there will be no peace in this land.
America must do right by Black Americans. America owes us. She owes us for the centuries of false promises. She owes us for all the lies told to us. America owes us for putting all the obstacles and barriers to our liberty and justice in our way.
For reasons noted in this essay, I waiver in my pledging. When I do decide to pledge my stomach churns, my headaches, and my mind wonders. I feel as though I am betraying myself because I know the truth. I feel America’s wrath. I see her injustices. I’m expected to forget.
I am literally nauseated when I say it. I equate the way I feel pledging allegiance to the discomfort I feel when people in my circle ask me to pray.
If White America can remember 9/11, Hiroshima, Auschwitz, Christopher Columbus, Thanksgiving, etc., then surely White America should think it’s appropriate we acknowledge and remember the inequality and oppression suffered by Black Americans at the hands of White Supremacy.
The Reasons We Aren’t Pressed To Kneel
Black men, women, and children kneel because we haven’t been liberated. We protest because there are two justice systems. We riot and rage because our liberties are constantly violated. We sing because we still aren’t free. All caged animals long for the day of their freedom. People are no different. Where there is no liberty, there cannot be justice.
So we Black folks will continue to protest, march, speak out, advocate, fight, pray, write, vote, and kneel until we have the same liberties and justice afforded to Whiteness in this country.
Maybe someday, we’ll all be free. Because all caged living things deserve to be freed. We’re hanging in there. Keeping our stride. Getting in gear.
©2019 Marley K. All rights reserved. Written permission required for all reprinting.