On June 27, the City Council of Eugene, Ore., caused controversy when it voted down a proposal to say the Pledge of Allegiance before its meetings. Instead, the Council approved a measure to allow the Pledge to be recited four times a year, around the major patriotic holidays: Independence Day, Veterans Day, Memorial Day and Flag Day.
Councilman Mike Clark told Fox News that “all he wanted to do was unite the council and show his more conservative constituents that in this city where diversity is celebrated, their more traditional values also are important.”
The proposal was reportedly shot down over the Pledge’s use of the words “under God.” One Councilwoman who voted against the proposal, Betty Taylor, “compared saying the Pledge of Allegiance to reading from ‘The Communist Manifesto,’” according to the article.
Eugene Mayor Kitty Piercy told news outlet the Pledge is “divisive.” “If there’s one thing the flag stands for,” Piercy said, “it’s that people don’t have to be compelled to say the Pledge of Allegiance or anything else.”
Councilman George Brown, who voted against the compromise, told Fox News the Pledge of Allegiance had no place at City Hall: “People can say it in their front yard or backyard. It really doesn’t help move the city business forward. It does not unite us.”
Despite the fact that Monday’s Council meeting took place close to Independence Day, the Council did not say the Pledge, explaining to Fox News that “it was just too soon” to say it, considering the controversy.