How to Respect the Flag and How Not to Make it a Pornography Issue
by Andros, Wed Jun 28, 2006 at 08:51:37 PM EDT
The American flag stands for freedom which includes dissent! At least this is how we liberals think of a national symbol that deserves respect because of what it represents!
Senator Specter (R-PA) and his cohorts argued that a Flag Desecration amendment would honor the veterans! Hmmm. Wouldn't it be better to honor them by making sure they have the proper body armor & equipment before they're deployed in battle? Wouldn't it be better to extend health insurance to the National Guardsmen after they return home from service? Wouldn't our fighting men & women be better off if the country kept its promises to them? Finally, wouldn't we show a practical respect for the flag if we made sure that the men & women who fly it in the battlefield are not sacrificed because of false pretences in a war based on a pack of lies?
What's in a Name?
Another problem with the desecration amendment is the practical application of the law. Who's to decide when a desecration of the flag takes place? It's much like pornography--in the eye of the beholder. As the 4th of July nears, I see the flag everywhere: on paper napkins that will wipe snouts & dirty hands and then promptly thrown into the garbage; on clothing that covers breasts, buttocks, and other sweaty private parts; on shoes, on chairs, and on funny hats at the Jersey shore. At the end of next week's celebrations, our streets, parks, and beaches will be strewn with plastic flags, and other disposable items decorated with our flag that will be trampled by millions of American feet!
Unfortunately, the flag has been used often by those who trade on the emotional side, suppressing reason and free speech. The flag has been used as a distraction by those who ask us to sacrifice while they do no sacrificing themselves. It seems to me that respecting the flag requires a bit more that flying it, pinning it on the lapel, and talking big. America the beautiful, land of the free and home of the brave, should remain an open society, tolerant of dissent and a promoter of free speech--even if this speech is disliked by the majority. In the end, we will win more converts to freedom and our way of life than by imitating those regimes that forcefully dictate how their people behave politically. The flag's powerful image and symbolism derive from what it represents. You choose the meaning and act your conscience.
It highly hypocritical to allow the flag (and all of our national symbols) to be used for any other reason except for political dissent!Liberal Citizen