Patricia Plantamura wrote this in February of 2013 when David Cobb came to visit the UUC in St. Petersburg, FL as he talked about Move to Amend.
RE: The U.S. Supreme Court's Citizens United decision
Can Corporations "Pledge Allegiance to the Flag"?
by Patricia Plantamura
When we think of "personhood", and particularly being a person in America, certain values come to mind. We are reminded of those values when we put our hand over our heart, and Pledge Allegiance to our Flag.
We say, "I pledge allegiance to the flag, of the United States of America." Do corporations generally, pledge allegiance to the United States, or to anything other than self-interest and profit?
We say "and to the Republic for which it stands." Does a corporation even know what a "republic" is–that is, a state in which the supreme power rests in the body of citizens, who are entitled to vote? Can a corporation vote? Since it's now considered to be a person, can a corporation be elected as President?
"One nation, under God." Does a corporation have spiritual beliefs? Can a corporation get on its knees to humble itself to a Supreme Being?
"Indivisible, with liberty and justice for all." Based upon a long history of corporate behavior, have corporations demonstrated concern for liberty and justice for their employees? Have corporations been known for being advocates of human rights?
I am drawing attention to the implications of being a person, in the United States. Civil rights for American people exist with responsibilities and duties for our citizens. Can corporations, as people, do the following?
Can a corporation be drafted into the military? Would a corporation be loyal enough to die for our country? If corporations are considered to be people, can they get married? Can a corporation adopt children? If a corporation could raise children, what kind of values would it impart to them?
It is clear that corporations have many of the rights and benefits of being an American, without the personal or social responsibilities, or the moral obligations.
A corporation can't put its hand on its heart, and Pledge Allegiance to our Flag, as it doesn't actually have a heart, or a conscience.
Democracy is a form of government in which power is vested in actual human beings, not in powerful or wealthy corporate interests. Corporations should not be allowed any part in the process which selects leaders in our country. Democracy is not a business. For these reasons we must join efforts to demand real democracy, to end corporate rule, and to remedy this undemocratic ruling by the Supreme Court. Let's "Move to Amend" our Constitution.