The “Allegiance to Gratitude” chapter in Braiding Sweetgrass pointed out to me just how forced the Pledge of Allegiance was on many of us during our childhood. It is crazy to think how most of us memorized the pledge by heart, yet don’t really know what it means or necessarily believe what it means. My favorite quote from this chapter comes from Kimmerer’s daughter : “And it’s not exactly liberty if they force you to say it, is it? “(106). I think the Thanksgiving Address discussed in the book is a great way to properly pledge loyalty to the world. I loved how it was split up into different sections by the different things the Earth provides to us; It definitely makes it more personal and shows how each thing deserves their own special appreciation. Kimmerer mentions that humans are the only living things capable of gratitude. This really stuck out to me and made me realize that being grateful for all that we have is such an important aspect of life.
Read the Allegiance for yourself!