NBC is apologizing for a controversial blunder made during its U.S. Open broadcast. The network opened its Sunday coverage of the golfing event with a patriotic pre-taped segment that featured audio of children reciting the Pledge of Allegiance—but cut the words “under God,” “indivisible,” and later in the segment, “one nation” from the pledge.
The Twitterverse responded with an “immediate and almost universally negative” outcry, according to Yahoo Sports' Jay Busbee—“under God” even became a trending topic on Sunday—and shortly afterwards, NBC issued a mea culpa.
“It was our intent to begin our coverage of this U.S. Open championship with a feature that captured the patriotism of our national championship being here in our nation's capital for the third time,” said host Dan Hicks in an on-air statement later in the telecast. “Regrettably, a portion of the Pledge of Allegiance that was in that feature was edited out. It was not done to upset anyone, and we'd like to apologize to those of you who were offended by it.”