William Phillips, a 10-year-old boy in Arkansas, has refused to recite the Pledge of Allegiance because he believes there is no “liberty and justice for all.”
In particular, Phillips said there was no liberty and justice for gay people, who are not allowed to marry. Although people are often suspicious of parents who indoctrinate their children and put their children at the forefront of political protests, this act of defiance seems to have been initiated by Phillips alone.
Phillips told CNN that he had thought through the words of the Pledge of Allegiance for several days before coming to the decision. He asked his parents whether it was against the law not to stand for the pledge, and ultimately decided not to stand or recite the pledge. “I was analyzing the meanings of it because I want to be a lawyer,” Will said of his thought process.
Phillips said he had grown up knowing gay people, had gay friends, and believed that they deserved the same rights as everyone else.
Phillips first refused to stand for the pledge at the beginning of the week. He continued to do this throughout the week. A substitute teacher was filling in that week, and tried to make Phillips stand up, but Phillips would not.
Phillips continued to refuse the substitute’s daily attempts to get him to stand for the pledge. “I eventually, very solemnly, with a little bit of malice in my voice, said, ‘ma’am, with all due respect, you can jump off a bridge.’”
I want to shake his hand and buy him a drink. Apple juice of course. I’m not for or against gay marriage but this is top tier on the highest regard.