2002-09-21 / Letters

Don’t Disregard Flag Etiquette

Don't Disregard Flag Etiquette

Dear Editor;

The official flag etiquette states, in part, that "The flag should never have placed on it any mark, insignia, letter, word, number, figure or drawing of any kind." That seems reasonable enough, and relatively easy to understand. After all, it would be disrespectful to paint your name or symbol on the American flag and then to display that flag publicly, and I'm certainly not trying to be
insensitive to someone who lost a loved one. Yet, during the recent U.S. Open tennis matches in Flushing, there was a Color Guard there to unfurl one of the so-called "Ground Zero" flags. What they unfurled before all of America and the world was a flag smothered in graffiti. Dozens of rescue workers used magic markers to permanently seal their place in American history by writing down their firehouse number or maybe their missing friends badge number on this flag. I guess they wanted it to become an historical artifact. What they did was to teach the future
generations of Americans who will come and view this flag that we are a
nation of hypocrites, that the rules apply only when we need them to apply.

The president says that if you're not with me that you're against me. I'm sure if I were to express my constitutionally protected right to free speech and burn an American flag in protest I would receive plenty of abuse from these so called patriots. Yet it somehow became patriotic to desecrate an American flag. What a country.


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