Let’s listen in as some of the candidates for the U.S. presidency recite the Pledge of Allegiance.
I pledge allegiance to— why “pledge”? Why not just “say”? Can’t I just say it? The middle class is dying and we’re swanning around using five-dollar words like “pledge” and “allegiance”? I’m telling you: Our country is in the pocket of Big Thesaurus. I’ve never seen anything like it.
But anyway, fine: I pledge my allegiance to the flag. I do—even though it’s a piece of fabric. An inanimate object. We’ve got Wall Street making record profits, turning the American Dream into a nightmare, and I’m supposed to stand here talking to an embroidered rectangle? That’s just what the fat cats in the nylon industry want. Ridiculous.
I’ll tell you something: the drug companies won’t stand here and pledge allegiance with their hand on their heart. They can’t— they’ve got both hands in the pocket of the middle class. They’re charging twice as much here for pharmaceuticals as they do in Europe. It’s criminal. And their TV commercials —you never know what they’re for! A lady chases a butterfly through a meadow. A man makes a pancake. Is this an ad for a heartburn pill or a Terrence Malick trailer? Someone explain it to me. You can’t.
And look at it. Look at the flag. All those beautiful stars crammed up in one corner, hoarded by the one per cent. And the rest of us—what’s left for us? Nothing but a bunch of long, boring stripes.
A flag cannot survive decoratively or morally when so many have only stripes. We need a revolution to overthrow this inequality of design. You want a pledge? Here’s my pledge. I pledge to send a very clear message to the upper left corner: The middle class doesn’t work 80, 90, 100 hours a week for stripes. It’s criminal.
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I pledge (1) allegiance (2) to the flag of the United States of America, (3) and to the republic for which it stands, one nation under God (4), indivisible, with liberty and justice for all. (5)
(1) Said pledge does not supersede or void any previous pledges, vows, promises, idle musings, backroom whispers or impulsive tweets.
(2) Allegiance herein defined as not less than a modicum, and not more than an abundance, of duly warranted loyalty and/or fidelity.
(3) I also like other flags. Drapes are nice, too. In fact, I support a wide array of textiles. Go to HillaryClinton.com and click on Vague, Boilerplate Support for Every Issue Imaginable.
(4) Uttered semi-ironically so that atheists don’t get all uppity.
(5) Please do not verify this statement on Google where, to judge how my campaign is going, it will probably take eight seconds to find a video in which I actively berate the American flag.
I pledge allegiance to the—
I pledge allegiance to the flag even though, let’s face it, it was probably made in China, right? Sad! China is killing us, by the way. They’re killing us on trade. Killing us on flags. And look at the quality of this thing. You can almost see through it! So soft and flimsy that it actually ripples in the currents of air. Think about that: here we have the symbol of the most powerful nation on Earth—and it’s getting pushed around by Mother Nature. There’s the Obama legacy for you.
You elect Donald Trump as president and I’m telling you right now: I’ll show the wind who’s boss. The Trump version of the American flag will be sturdy. Solid metal. Tasteful gold-leaf accents. Subtle strips of neon. Good luck, wind! I’d like to see some hippie dirt-bag try to burn that flag with his marijuana lighter. Wouldn’t happen. Couldn’t. Sorry, Bernie.
So I pledge allegiance to the improved Trump version of the flag of the U.S.A., and to the republic and so on, with liberty and justice for everyone except protesters, socialists, immigrants, Muslims, Democrats, losers, reporters and people who look like maybe they’re in ISIS. For them I pledge a punch in the face.
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