Many sects of many religions take issue with the U.S. pledge of allegiance. What is (or are?) the Islamic view on this issue? Is pledging allegiance to the United States flag (or other similar pledges) permitted? If they are permitted by some, but not other groups, what are the reasons for the different interpretations?
As soon as a Muslim acquires citizenship of a country (whether Muslim or non-Muslim), he enters into a covenant with that country to obey all its laws. The Quran, stresses the importance of a covenant:
And fulfill every covenant. Verily, you will be held accountable with regard to the covenants.-17:34
The oath of allegiance stands for pledging allegiance to American laws and is indirectly the same thing as asked by Islam. It is just giving a formal shape to an obligation.
There is something wrong with saying the pledge of allegiance because while reciting "I pledge of allegiance to the flag of the United States of America, and to the republic for which it stands, one nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all", you have to stand and hold your hand of our heart, and stare at the flag. And you are reciting this as if you are worshipping the flag. Muslims should only pledge their allegiance to Allah subhanu wa ta'aala. Besides, the American flag stands for the innocent people they killed including millions of muslims, native americans, blacks, etc.. How can a Muslim stand for something like this???
The disagreement depends entirely if the Muslim views the pledge as an act of worship or not. If you view it as just a pledge to follow the laws of the country it is acceptable. I am am a Muslim American, and I personally view the pledge as it is pushed in most American situations as an act of worshiping the country. They may put the words under God, but most people do not believe it. An example of this is the US military. You must follow the orders of your commander even if the order is immoral and contradicts religious teaching (even Christian teachings). Conscientious objector status can only be seen as a whole (apposed to war in general) and not used in individual decisions. Simply put you can not join the military unless you are willing to put Country before God. This is a huge part of many soldiers coming home with PTSD. They are often forced to go against their own personal and religious morals due to the obligation to follow orders. So I will respectfully stand for the pledge of Allegiance but I will not say it. I do respect my country and believe the legal system in the US (excepting the Military) is actually the closest to the true Islamic law on the face of the earth. But I will never put Country before Faith.
A Muslim saying the Pledge of Allegiance is not against the religion.
I pledge of allegiance to the flag of the United States of America, and to the republic for which it stands, one nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.
I see nothing in there that would go against the Qur'an:
- Muslims believe in God (Allah).
- There are Muslims in America.
Islam is a religion of Law. The Law (shariah) is as was handed down by Muhammad. The basic structure of the law puts Allah before all Gods and Allah's law above all others.
I don't think that Most Muslims will pledge allegiance to the US for that reason. I attended a "national day of prayer" meeting today. Three Muslim women were present and neither of them joined in the National Anthem. I doubt that they would say the pledge either.