President Obama Orders “Under God” Removed from Federal Property-Fiction!
Summary of eRumor:
President Obama has allegedly issued “a flurry of executive orders” to remove the phrase “under God” from the Pledge of Allegiance, and from all federal properties.
A fake news website is behind the false report that President Obama has ordered “under God” to be removed from the government property and the Pledge of Allegiance.
The fake news website, TDAlliance.com, reported on January 31, 2016, that President Obama had taken with “a flurry of executive actions.” The report, which appears under the headline, “Obama Orders Phrase ‘Under God’ to be Banned on all Government Property,” continues:
This order will help “ensure religious diversity” the President said in a press release Saturday.
“The separation of church and state outlined in the First Amendment to the United States Constitution is an important founding principle of our nation. Our nation’s Bill of Rights guarantees not only that the government cannot establish an official religion, but also guarantees citizens’ rights to practice the religion of their choosing or no religion at all.” White House spokesman Josh Earnest told Fox News.
That report is false. And TDAlliance.com is not affiliated with Fox News. “Fox News The FB Page” appears on the website’s masthead, along with Fox News logos.
In reality, The Obama administration has actually defended the government’s use of “under God.” The White House issued a formal response to a petition to remove the phrase from the Pledge of Allegiance in 2011. In response to the petition, which generated more than 20,000 signatures, White House spokesperson Joshua DuBois wrote:
The separation of church and state outlined in the First Amendment to the United States Constitution is an important founding principle of our nation. Our nation’s Bill of Rights guarantees not only that the government cannot establish an official religion, but also guarantees citizens’ rights to practice the religion of their choosing or no religion at all.
Throughout our history, people of all faiths – as well as secular Americans – have played an important role in public life. And a robust dialogue about the role of religion in public life is an important part of our public discourse.
While the President strongly supports every American’s right to religious freedom and the separation of church and state, that does not mean there’s no role for religion in the public square.
When he was a Senator from Illinois, President Obama gave a keynote address at the Call to Renewal conference where he spoke about the important role religion plays in politics and in public life.
A sense of proportion should also guide those who police the boundaries between church and state. Not every mention of God in public is a breach to the wall of separation — context matters.
That’s why President Obama supports the use of the words “under God’ in our Pledge of Allegiance and “In God we Trust’ on our currency and as our national motto. These phrases represent the important role religion plays in American public life, while we continue to recognize and protect the rights of secular Americans. As the President said in his inaugural address, “We are a nation of Christians and Muslims, Jews and Hindus, and non-believers.” We’re proud of that heritage, and the strength it brings to our great country.
Fake news reports often cite executive orders that were supposedly issued by President Obama. Whenever you read about an executive order supposedly signed by President Obama (or any other president for that matter), click here to see if the executive order actually exists.