Happy Flag Day, everyone. Are you flying Old Glory outside your house? Or from your car? Or from the back of your motorcycle?
Good for you if you are. If not, hey, that’s OK, too.
You see, the flag we honor today symbolizes our freedom to fly the flag — or not fly it if that’s what we prefer.
Whether we fly the flag doesn’t diminish our love of country, or the flag that symbolizes our great nation.
This is particularly significant this year because of some of the kerfuffle that has been stirred up by professional athletes who “take a knee” during the playing of the “Star Spangled Banner” before athletic events. The athletes, most of whom are African-American, have protested police brutality in communities across the country.
Do they hate the country, or the military personnel, or the flag when they decline to stand during the National Anthem playing? No.
Then again, the flag we honor today symbolizes the government that gives athletes the right to make these statements. Donald J. Trump has chosen to demonize them, however, using the flag as a sort of rhetorical weapon. The president has it exactly wrong!
We honor the flag because of the symbolism it carries. We don’t honor a piece of red, white and blue cloth. We honor the system of government our nation’s founders created, the government that allows unfettered protest.
Yes, that includes efforts by those to burn the flag when they protest government policy. Is that an effective way to win converts to your point of view? Hardly. No one is going to make me align with their cause by burning the flag. Indeed, I cherish the flag too much to tolerate anyone doing such a thing in my presence.
However, the court system created by the founders stands by people’s right to burn the flag to seek “redress” of their grievances.
The flag we honor is a glorious symbol of freedom. Oh, how I love the principles for which it flies in all its glory.
Enjoy your Flag Day.