In the 8th Congressional District in Illinois there is a three way race between Democrat Incumbent Melissa Bean, Republican Candidate Joe Walsh and the Green Party’s Bill Scheurer. In a debate last week which was sponsored and moderated by the League of Women Voters a spontaneous recitation of The Pledge of Allegiance broke out, much to the dismay of moderator Kathy Tate-Bradish of the LoWV.
During the opening of the event, an audience member stood up and requested that The Pledge of Allegiance be recited. Tate-Brandish said that it would not be recited because it was not on the schedule for the evening’s program.
After several shouts of “Why not?” the audience stood up and recited the pledge over the objections of Tate-Brandish, anyway. After the audience sat down, Tate-Brandish scolded them by saying she hoped that was the last time she would be disrespected. At first, when questioned, Tate-Brandish said this about reciting The Pledge of Allegiance, “I have absolutely nothing for or against saying the Pledge of Allegiance at the beginning of something like this.”
Let’s look at that statement. She said she has nothing against saying it. Fine, so let the audience say it. She further said she has nothing “for” saying it. Why? What is it that is so bad about being patriotic these days? Well in the days following the event, League of Women Voters’ Illinois Spokesperson, Executive Director Jan Czarnik said “phony patriotism” is driving the criticism of Tate-Brandish. Czarnik spokesperson then added that it was an orchestrated attempt by GOP Candidate Walsh’s campaign to “bully” the organization (LoWV). She then went on to say, “It’s a phony patriotism issue is what it is,” she said. “They must think it helps their campaign.” Czarnik also added that someone is not a better American just by reciting the Pledge of Allegiance.
So now it is phony to want to recite The Pledge of Allegiance? Why is the League of Women Voters playing the blame game on this?
Walsh’s campaign denies responsibility for it and during the recitation both he and incumbent Bean stood and recited the pledge with the audience. Green Party candidate Sheurer did not. He later stated that he did not want to be “forced” to recite it.
Audience member and Island Lake resident Joseph Ptak, a Walsh supporter, claimed Friday that he was the person who stood asked for The Pledge of Allegiance at the debate. Ptak, 58, a U.S. Air Force veteran, said he thought the pledge was a proper way to begin the event that was in a high school with student participation. He said numerous veterans were in the audience, and he objects to Czarnik questioning the request’s sincerity.
“I’m a Joe Walsh supporter, but first and foremost I’m an American,” Ptak said.
What has this country come to when a spontaneous rendition of The Pledge of Allegiance is labeled as “phony patriotism” and used as a foil by a leftist organization such as the League of Women Voters? This is yet another example of everyday Americans waking up and taking a stance against the creeping Marxism of the far left. Kudos to Mr. Ptak and to those audience members who stood up not only for The Pledge of Allegiance, but also for America.
Video of the spontaneous recitation of The Pledge of Allegiance –
GOP Candidate Joe Walsh’s comments after the debate –