American Student Forced To Recite Mexican Pledge or Get an ‘F’2 min read

During her Spanish class in 2011 at a McAllen High School, 15 year-old Brenda Brindson and her class were told to recite the Mexican Pledge and salute Mexico’s flag. Brenda refused saying she believed it was un-American of her to recite the pledge of another country and swear allegiance to it.

The clincher? Brenda’s mother is a Mexican immigrant, while her father is an American. Regardless of her Mexican roots, Brenda has sworn her allegiance to America and isn’t looking back. According to Brenda, it would be un-patriotic to pledge her loyalty to another country.

Brenda’s Spanish teacher, Reyna Santos, refused to back down on her demands. When Brenda steadfastly clung to only pledging to her own country (the US), she was forced to listen to other students recite the pledge over the course of the next few days. Even though Brenda did this ‘alternate assignment’ at her teacher’s direction, she was given a failing grade.

Symbolic US and Mexican Flags

Brenda offered to recite the US Pledge of Allegiance in Spanish instead of Mexico’s pledge, but her teacher declined.

Interestingly enough,the McAllen public school district has a policy that prevents students from being forced to recite the American Pledge of Allegiance. Furthermore, the district also allows students to not recite parts of the US Declaration of Independence if they have “a conscientious objection to the recitation”. Not so with Mexico’s Pledge. That’s mandatory and you’ll get punished for refusing.

The Thomas More Law Center has filed a lawsuit on behalf of Brenda against the school district for forcing her to pledge allegiance to a foreign country or get punished. “There is a sad trend in public schools across our nation to undermine American patriotism,” said Richard Thompson president of the Thomas More Law Center. “But it’s encouraging to see students like Brenda stand up for America despite pressure from school officials.”

It’s disturbing to see students being forced to say the pledge of a foreign country while saluting their flag. What has happened to American patriotism? How in the world can you pledge allegiance to a foreign country and still be loyal to your own?


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Carrie is a country girl living in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia. When not working for her family's internet marketing firm, RYP Marketing, you can find Carrie reading, hiking, biking, shooting at the range or catching up on the latest news. You can contact Carrie via email at

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10 thoughts on “American Student Forced To Recite Mexican Pledge or Get an ‘F’<span class="wtr-time-wrap after-title"><span class="wtr-time-number">2</span> min read</span>”

  1. Pingback: @OTBL
  2. I may ruffle a few feathers with this one, but I personally believe that reciting the pledge at all should be entirely voluntary, and not mandatory.

    Small children have no idea what they even mean by reciting “I pledge allegiance…”

    I may be the minority in this crowd, however.

    • Good point, Aaron. While I think every American should want to say the Pledge of Allegiance, I think it’s their freedom of speech to recite it or not to. The moment the government starts forcing people to say or not say something, it gets dangerous and often tramples on our rights.

      Obviously Brenda understood what it meant to pledge allegiance to a flag/country. And high five to her for standing up for her country!

  3. I may be wrong, but if I understand correctly an American citizen who pledges allegiance to a foreign nation is subject to the loss of his or her U.S. citizenship. Before I’m accused of being xenophobic, I am an American who has lived in Mexico for fifteen years and speak Spanish fluently. I love Mexico, but I guarantee that if anyone were to march down Paseo de la Reforma in Mexico City carrying an American flag, he would be torn to shreds by an angry mob.

  4. Richard, that is the exact irony of this situation. How can an American student pledge allegiance to another country and really mean it? And if this person really does mean her pledge to another country, why in the world are they an American citizen?!

  5. Hey, Carrie,

    As I mentioned yesterday, I live in Mexico, although I’m an American citizen – born in Boston. After my reply, I spoke with some of my Mexican friends about Brenda’s situation. They almost went hysterical with laughter, and assured me that in Mexico no English teacher would even THINK of making students recite the American Pledge of Allegiance or sing the American national anthem. It would be considered treason here.

    • Richard, it sounds like Mexico has it right about not forcing people to recite a foreign country’s pledge of allegiance!


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