Claim: A new Pepsi soda can design omits the words "under God" from the Pledge of Allegiance.
Example: [Collected via e-mail, February 2002]
Pepsi has a new patriotic can coming out with pictures of the Empire State Bldg. and the Pledge of Allegiance on them. But Pepsi forgot two little words on the pledge, "Under God." Pepsi said they did not want to offend anyone.
If this is true then we do not want to offend anyone at the Pepsi corporate office. If we do not buy any Pepsi product then they will not receive any of our monies. Our money after all does have the words "Under God" on it. Please pass this word to everyone you know. Tell your Sunday School class tomorrow and tell your Pastors so that they can tell the whole congregation. Christians stand up and let your voices be heard. We want the words "under God" to be read by every person who buys a can.
To drink or not to drink?
Coca-Cola has a new patriotic can coming out with pictures of the Empire State Building and the Pledge of Allegiance on them. But Coke forgot two little words on the pledge, "Under God."
Coke said they did not want to offend anyone. If this is true then we do not want to offend anyone at the Coke corporate office. If we do not buy any Coke products then they will not receive any of our monies. Our money, after all, does have the words "Under God" on it.
If you agree with this policy, please pass this word to everyone you know. Coke doesn't have the right to rewrite the Pledge Of Allegiance!! If you do not agree, just erase or delete this message.
Origin:Although there once was at least some element of truth to the item quoted above about the omission of the words "under God" from the Pledge of Allegiance on a soda can, the information it contains is long outdated and never had anything to do with Pepsi or Coca-Cola. Neither of those companies is producing, or has it ever produced, redesigned cans bearing any portion of the Pledge of Allegiance or an image of the Empire State Building. This issue concerns a special patriotic can design briefly produced by
The brouhaha began in mid-November 2001, when the
Dr Pepper did not print the entire Pledge of Allegiance on its cans while leaving out the words 'under God'; it invoked the Pledge of Allegiance by using a mere three words from the pledge. However, because the three words
Dr Pepper has designed a new patriotic can featuring the Statue of Liberty and the Pledge of Allegiance, but they left out the phrase "under God" from the Pledge of Allegiance. When asked why,
Dr Pepperreplied: "We felt 'One Nation ... Indivisible'best represented the message we were trying to get across."
Dr Pepper has also used the excuse that wasn't enough room on the can for the words "Under God". The real reason is that the company didn't want to risk offending anyone who doesn't believe in God. Bad timing. After the events of 9/11, that's just not politically correct anymore!
I really do like Diet Dr Pepper, but I'm joining the ranks of those who won't be buying another one until new cans are printed that include the whole Pledge of Allegiance. I don't want them to simply yank the cans off the shelves, I want new cans printed with the words, "under God" on the can! And if enough people demand this, we'll get it. Walt Disney, AT&T, and
K-Martall chose to ignore boycott efforts; and now those companies are reaping the financial consequences of their decisions.
At one time, Dr Pepper addressed the issue on their web site, saying:
In recent days, several news media outlets in the country have reported on a special edition
Dr Peppercan that was created to show support for the patriotic fervor that has been sweeping America since the tragic events of Sept. 11,2001, and to show the world that we are a united nation of people who place a high value upon freedom.
Much of the information being circulated on this subject is incomplete or inaccurate. Here are the facts:
The can, released last November, features an image of the Statue of Liberty along with the words "One
Nation ...Indivisible." The special packaging was designed to reflect our pride in this country's determination to stand together as one. The Statue of Liberty and Pledge of Allegiance were chosen as two of the greatest symbols of American freedom.
Due to space limitations on the can, only a few of the
31 wordsfrom the Pledge of Allegiance could be used. The available area for graphics limited the amount of verbiage on the can. Of the 31 wordsin the Pledge of Allegiance, only three were included. More than 90 percentwere not included.
We at Dr Pepper/Seven Up strongly believe that the message on these cans is a resoundingly patriotic, bipartisan message that we are a united nation.
More than 41 million special edition cans were ordered by
Dr Pepperbottlers in portions of a dozen states. Because the limited edition patriotic can is to be retired in February, you will soon see regular packaging graphics for Dr Pepperat your local retail stores.
Although 18 million Dr Pepper cans bearing the new design had been produced by February 2002, the company said it had received only "four complaints from Dubuque" and
Subject: Dr Pepper Boycott
We called on God on 9-11 so what's wrong with him now?
For those who have not heard, the bottlers/manufacturers of
Dr Pepperand their other products, have started a "new" can campaign. They are putting patriotic scenes on them. One, is the Empire State Bldg. with the pledge of allegiance...but...they left off the words..."under God".
They felt it might "offend" some.
I don't know about you, but as a Christian, their position offends me! I am boycotting their products!
They said they didn't "have room" for those words, but yet they had room for "indivisible" on the can! Please pass this along to others and see if we can get a message out to
Dr Pepper . . .if having "under God" on cans offends them, then they don't need our money with "in God we trust" on it!
PLEASE PASS THIS INFORMATION ON TO YOUR FRIENDS!
Somehow along the way this message morphed into the versions quoted at the head of this page, which inaccurately attribute the "Pledge" can design to Pepsi.
PepsiCo eventually had to issue their own rumor alert regarding this issue:
FALSE RUMOR ALERT: PATRIOTIC CANS
You've received an erroneous email about a "patriotic can" that Pepsi allegedly produced with an edited version of America's Pledge of Allegiance. The truth is, Pepsi never produced such a can. In fact, this is a hoax that has been circulating on the Internet for more than six years. A patriotic package used in 2001 by
Dr Pepper(which is not a part of PepsiCo) was inappropriately linked to Pepsi. Thanks for giving us the chance to clarify the situation and please feel free to share this message with anyone else who may have received the erroneous email.
In February 2003 we began seeing the call to boycott the soda bottler who had omitted "Under God" from its patriotic cans aimed at Coca-Cola. It was the same wording as the summons to arms against Pepsi that had circulated a year earlier but with "Coke" replacing "Pepsi" in the text. It too was false, as Coca-Cola had had no more to do with the short-lived
Writing to any company now and threatening to boycott them until they "put 'under God' back on their cans" is pointless. The patriotic "Pledge" can was produced only between November 2001 and February 2002, it was sold only in parts of twelve states, it has long since been retired, and it has not been available in stores since that one time.
An interesting contrast was provided by Time magazine's
Last updated: 29 July 2016
Originally published: 09 February 2002