Tag Archives: Stars and Stripes

Just think of the irony

Irony can be a real bitch … you know?

Let us consider two issues dealing with “respect for our troops” and whether we can make any sense of them.

Donald Trump has been foaming at the mouth over the sight of pro athletes “taking a knee” to protest police brutality while they play the National Anthem. “Throw the SOBs out!” Trump bellows, contending that such a form of protest disrespects the flag … as well as disrespecting the men and women who fight on behalf of that flag.

Are you with me?

Now we have the distressing news about Russians paying bounties to the Taliban for killing American service personnel. Reports have seemingly confirmed what has been divulged, that the Russians have paid the money. The question now is when Trump knew about it.

His reaction to the initial reports has been, shall we say, much less visceral than he has been in reacting to athletes kneeling during the National Anthem.

This brings to mind a puzzle I am trying to solve. If the president is going to demand that we respect our troops by standing proudly, with hands over their hearts, while we sing the National Anthem, then where is the outrage over reports that Russian goons are paying bounties for the lives of our priceless treasure?

My goodness, Donald Trump’s relative passivity over these reports is more than disconcerting. It is reprehensible, disgusting, disgraceful. It speaks volumes to me — as well as to others — about the seeming lack of sincerity from Trump about the respect he demands for our fighting men and women.

The irony of these two examples — taking a knee and silence in the face of evidence of threats to our fighting warriors — is hideous in the extreme. I only can conclude that Trump’s alleged love and respect for our troops in battle is as much of a sham as his version of the presidency.

U.S. Sen. Mitt Romney — a Utah Republican — was right in 2016 when he called Trump a “phony and a fraud.” I implore the rest of the country to wake up to what has been patently obvious about this con man all along.

Stars and Stripes falls victim to changing media climate?

Wait just a cotton-pickin’ minute.

Donald John Trump keeps yammering about how much he cares about the men and women who serve in the military, doing duty that he couldn’t fit into his own life when he was of the age to fight for his country.

Why, then, is the Pentagon — under the current president’s watch — stripping Stars and Stripes of the government subsidy on which it relies to provide news and other information to our military personnel?

Stars and Stripes, which has been published regularly since World War II, is losing its $8 million annual subsidy, ostensibly so the Pentagon can spend that money (which amounts to chump change in the total spending accrued by the agency) on other projects.

As Stars and Stripes reported: “Every day in my office as commander of U.S. European Command, I would read Stars and Stripes,” said retired Adm. James Stravidis, who served as EUCOM chief and NATO Supreme Allied Command from 2009 to 2013. “It was an invaluable unbiased and highly professional source of information which was critical to me in my role overseeing U.S. military throughout Europe.”

Allow me to join Adm. Stravidis in declaring my own intense interest in Stars and Stripes. Many of us serving in Vietnam came to rely on the newspaper to tell us of what was happening back home. We also had Armed Forces Radio, but to those of us who preferred to read the printed word, Stars and Stripes served as a sort of lifeline to the “The World.”

Are we now being led to believe that our young men and women no longer get to read the news that Adm. Stravidis said kept him informed just a few years ago?

This is an absolute shame.

Stars & Stripes vs. Stars & Bars

NOCONA, Texas — It caught our eye as we zipped past along U.S. 82.

Someone was flying two flags on a staff on the north side of the highway: the Stars and Stripes and the Stars and Bars.

Then came the discussion between my wife and me. How can someone fly those two flags, proclaiming allegiance to two disparate symbols? she asked.

Good question. I don’t have a clear answer, because I don’t believe the answer is readily available.

Indeed, the flag at the top of the flag pole — Old Glory — represents the United States of America. All 50 of them these days. The national flag symbolizes a unity of spirit, a common purpose, a sense of oneness. It is meant to provide a beacon of hope to those who aspire to live in the land that is a beacon of freedom and individual liberty.

As for the second flag on that pole, to me it represents something quite different. The Stars and Bars symbolizes the Confederate States of America. In 1861, those 13 states withdrew from the United States of America. Then Confederate fighting men launched an artillery barrage against the Union garrison in Charleston, S.C., harbor.

The Civil War was on. It killed roughly 600,000 Americans, making it the bloodiest conflict in U.S. history.

The soldiers and sailors who fought under that Confederate flag fought to preserve human enslavement. They sought to topple the United States of America. They fought against the Union. They wanted to create a separate nation, one that allowed states to determine who is entitled to the full fruits of citizenship and who should be kept as slaves.

I get that Texas was one of those states that sent troops to fight against the United States. I do not know what’s in the heart of the family is displaying those two flags just east of Nocona, a community known as a place that produces world-class cowboy boots.

We just were taken aback — perhaps for the first time in our lives — at the sight of two flags flying from the same staff. We just wondered how one can fly two symbols that stand for diametrically opposite principles.

Now comes Louis Farrakhan to weigh in on flag

Rush Limbaugh said on his radio show the other day that liberals are next going to seek to take down the Stars and Stripes.

The conservative talk show voice was making some point about the furor over the Confederate flag in the wake of the Charleston church massacre.

Now comes a voice from the equally remote far left of the spectrum. Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan said we, indeed, need to take down the American flag.


Those who march under and behind Old Glory have been subjugating African-Americans, Farrakhan said.

That is utter crap!

A former colleague of mine said I owe Daddy Dittohead an apology for tweeting that he should “shut the bleep up” over his remarks about the Stars and Stripes.

I’ll pass on the apology. As for Farrakhan, he, too, needs to shut his pie hole.