Peter Dreier

Peter Dreier teaches politics and chairs the Urban & Environmental Policy Department at Occidental College. His latest book is The 100 Greatest Americans of the 20th Century: A Social Justice Hall of Fame (Nation Books, 2012).

Recent Articles

Trump Touts Pledge of Allegiance with Socialist Roots

Donald Trump’s vision of America clashes sharply with the original intent behind the Pledge of Allegiance, penned during the Gilded Age to promote equity, tolerance, and progressive ideals.

AP Photo/Evan Vucci
AP Photo/Evan Vucci Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump gestures as he speaks to the American Legion National Convention, Thursday, September 1, 2016, in Cincinnati. “ We want young Americans to recite the Pledge of Allegiance,” Donald Trump said in a speech to the American Legion National Convention in Cincinnati last week. Trump told the war veterans organization that he would work “to strengthen respect for our flag,” a not-too veiled swipe at San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick's refusal to stand for the national anthem at a late-August preseason game. In a Trump administration, the GOP nominee said, “We will be united by our common culture, values and principles, becoming one American nation, one country under one constitution saluting one American flag—and always saluting it—the flag all of you helped to protect and preserve, that flag deserves respect.” Four years ago, GOP candidate Mitt Romney also invoked the Pledge of Allegiance to portray himself as...

'You're Being Ridiculous'

The Bernie-or-bust crowd makes up a small percentage of Sanders delegates, but could inflict disproportionate damage on Hillary Clinton if the Philadelphia convention’s progressive stars don’t knock some sense into them.

AP Photo/John Minchillo
AP Photo/John Minchillo Supporters of Senator Bernie Sanders listen during a rally near City Hall in Philadelphia, Tuesday, July 26, 2016, during the second day of the Democratic National Convention. B ernie Sanders, Michelle Obama, Elizabeth Warren, Corey Booker, and others gave inspiring speeches at the Democratic Party's convention on Monday evening, but actress and comedian Sarah Silverman delivered the night's best one-liner, an ad-lib from her prepared remarks: “To the Bernie-or-bust people, you're being ridiculous.” Sanders is backed by 1,893 delegates at the convention compared with 2,814 pledged to Hillary Clinton. Silverman was speaking to the handful of Sanders delegates—perhaps 200 at most—who refuse to accept the reality that Clinton will be the Democratic nominee, and that either she or Donald Trump will be the next president of the United States. They disrupted Silverman's address by booing when she mentioned Clinton's name and shouting “Bernie,” making it difficult for...