“One Nation, Under Me…”

Among comics/comix fans, Bill Keane’s “Family Circus” is considered so blandly inoffensive as to be beneath ridicule. But I can’t let Sunday’s strip pass without comment.
It begins with the adorable tow-headed kid (Jeffy?) waking up and telling Mom, “Wow! I dreamed that God was saying the Pledge of Allegiance!” Then, in the second and third panels, there is a cloud with thunderbolt saying, “…and to the republic for which it stands…” “…one nation under Me, indivisible…” as Jeffy beams reverently.
Wow! indeed. Has the nexus between reactionary authoritarianism, religiosity, and infantile sentimentalism ever been stated quite so succinctly? Not to mention the implication that God is the God only of these here United States; he don’t like all them foreigners. (And of course, only a mind truly in the gutter would see any double-entendre in the phrase “under me”)



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2 responses to ““One Nation, Under Me…””

  1. Porlock Junior Avatar

    Thanks for reminding me of that Godawful strip, which my mind had voided quickly on Sunday.
    No, I mean it; because it reminded me of a classic poster, the one that Paul Krassner’s mag The Realist put out, showing “One nation under God”, and yup, it was God on top and Uncle Sam on the bottom.
    It was sold in a 2-pack, with the classic Fuck Communism poster. Remember, this was the 60s, when that was a bit outrageous.
    Anyway, “one nation under Me” needs to be seen in that light.

  2. dumpster Avatar

    I do remember the impact of the F*** Communism poster, the Disney poster (did Krassner get sued over that?), and the Realist itself in forming my worldview at that time.
    My next door neighbor’s dad, a failed small-businessman semi-lowlife who considered Adlai Stevenson a “socialist” and like all right-wing crazies believed that Kennedy had cheated on Jackie, ordered the FC poster from a copy the kid (later an anti-Social Security lobbyist) had “borrowed” from me. I don’t think he would have gone for the Uncle Sam under God, though.