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Don't tread on our flag

Dear Editor,

Much as been said regarding the proposed Constitutional Amendment banning the "desecration" of our national flag. If fully approved, it would alter our Bill of Rights, something that has not occurred since 1792!

I take great pride in being American and have several very special memories, which involve our flag. Pledging daily my allegiance to Old Glory while in elementary school. Standing straight, gazing with wonder and pride at the flag, and speaking with sincerity that familiar pledge.

And there's a sweet memory made on a melting parade deck on Parris Island, S.C., one hot day in June in 1987. The Marine Corps Marching Band played the national anthem as a fresh crop of Marines stood at attention. On our final day of boot camp we stood tall, saluting, and watching her dance in the breeze. A tear escaped my eye and blending with sweat rolled down my cheek and landed near my quivering Adam's apple. Afterward, I noticed that most of us had shed a tear. We weren't moved by the colored nylon fabric! We were moved by what that symbol represents and how honored we were to be the rightful protectors what that flag stood for ... America.

My wife will attest to the fact that I can go all day with a wrinkled shirt and crumpled briefs without complaint, but I can't bear to come home and find our flag with as much as a twist. I can't fix it quickly enough. And yet, this very symbol which unites and identifies us to the world has been reduced to a political football. Having read opinions both for and against the bill, I find it odd and disturbing that most writers were compelled to reveal his or her political preference. Does that really matter? Some writers seem to place greater interest and support on their party's position, rather than what they thought or what's best for our country.

Our nation was born out of protest and in every peaceful government protest is that same vibrant American Spirit! The same spirit which fired shots at the King's soldiers. George Washington and his men earned for us all the right to enjoy these very freedoms! I'm free to write this letter, to own property, to protest against our government, and most importantly, I'm free to worship the One True Living God! It's a free country, so go ahead and burn the flag if you want to. Just don't try to burn mine. This act neither tarnishes the United States of America nor dishonors those who were killed or maimed serving her. Suppressed descent is far more flammable than expressed descent.

Greg Derry

Thomson



Web posted on Thursday, July 14, 2005











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