Atheist Renews Legal Battle Over Pledge of Allegiance

April 3, 2006

Source: The Kansas City Star

On April 3, 2006 The Kansas City Star reported, "The children in Shauna Hammett’s kindergarten class faced a small American flag hanging from a wall at Pawnee Elementary School in Overland Park one recent Monday morning. Led by a child’s voice over the loudspeaker, they recited the Pledge of Allegiance. But if California atheist Michael Newdow gets his way, the Pledge of Allegiance no longer would include the phrase 'under God.' Newdow is pursuing another court case to remove those words. He formerly sued as a parent but now is representing other parents as an attorney. The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco has set dates this spring and summer for briefs to be filed in the case. The same court ruled in 2002 that 'under God' in the pledge is unconstitutional. No matter what the court decides this time, it is almost certain the case will be appealed again to the U.S. Supreme Court, which dismissed the previous suit on procedural grounds. That dismissal left the core issue of the pledge’s constitutionality unsettled."