Why The Pledge?


Matthew Wirtz, News Writer

At 7:35 AM every day, the bell rings signaling the beginning of school. Shortly after, a voice comes on the intercom and directs students to say the pledge of allegiance. 

Almost every student slowly stands up and prepares to say the pledge. After the pledge, everyone sits down and everything goes back to normal. This happens nearly every day, with no one even batting an eye at this occurrence. 

This phenomenon is rare around the world. Very few countries actually perform this practice with a few being North Korea, Singapore, and Turkey.

One main reason for the pledge can be to instill a sense of patriotism in the students. 

One Lakeland High School junior, Jameson Elliott, shows clear patriotism in his belief in doing the pledge of allegiance every day. 

“I know why I do the pledge of allegiance. It’s because I’m American,” Elliott stated.

Colleen Bevacqua, a United States history teacher at Lakeland High School, believes the pledge is important.

“I feel like it’s a reminder of freedoms that sometimes people take for granted,” Bevacqua said. 

Brady Hanna, a junior at LHS, isn’t sure why students say the pledge. 

“I have no idea why we do the pledge of allegiance. We have been doing it since kindergarten and I have no idea why,” Hanna stated.

Another LHS junior, Hutton Hegbloom, has no idea why we even do the pledge. 

“I just do it because everyone else does,” Hegbloom said.

The reason why students say the pledge is because of Lakeland’s School District. Their is an expectation throughout the district to say the pledge of allegiance everyday.

Trent Derrick, the principal at LHS, believes that the pledge is important. 

Derrick said, “I do think that the pledge is important. There is alot of tradition behind it, but there is also alot of rationale behind it. I think it gives students time to reflect on their country.”

Elliott later changed his stance on the topic by saying, “It definitely is classical conditioning. Every time that intercom comes on, I stand up. I feel like Pavlov’s dogs.”

Classical conditioning is when a behavior is connected with a stimulus. In this case, the stimulus would be the intercom turning on and the behavior would be reciting the pledge of allegiance. 

Mathew Williams, an LHS junior, believes he might have been conditioned to say the pledge. Williams said, “I don’t think it is brainwashing. I might be saying that because I am brainwashed though.”