A California student group insists that the American flag makes ethnic students uncomfortable. A group of protestors in Georgia stomp the flag, inspiring a former Marine to confiscate it. And now another retired Marine wakes up to find his flag destroyed, the pole smashed through the windshield of his car. For Americans who still believe that the flag symbolizes the greatest country on Earth, it hasn’t been a great year for patriotism.
Marvin Hernandez Garcia appeared on Fox and Friends this weekend to discuss what hooligans had done to his flag. “The flag represents freedom,” Garcia said. “When you step on the flag, you really are stepping on those veterans that have really fought for you. And everybody else, including your own parents, grandparents and great-grandparents and so forth.”
America’s Mighty Warriors, a group that gives aid and support to military families, has announced that they will pay for the damage done to Garcia’s property. And while it’s good to know that there are still some Americans with their heads screwed on straight, it doesn’t quite cancel out the growing hostility towards the red, white, and blue.
The Demise of Respect
A lot of this comes down to respect, which is something most liberals neither command nor give. They are content to stew in their own skewed view of the world, only listening to counterarguments so they can pick out the racism, sexism, and homophobia they find lurking behind every phrase. They look at this country and see only evil. A white history of oppression. To them, the flag represents everything they despise.
They fail to understand that the flag also represents those aspects of America that they love, few as they may be. It represents those learned men who founded their precious liberal universities. It represents the blood of black soldiers who fought and died on both sides of the Civil War. It represents the radical social changes that gave women the right to vote, that made gay marriage legal in most states, and that allowed Barack Obama to become the president of the United States.
Ask a hundred people what they love most about America, and you might just get a hundred different answers. The flag stands for all of it. It’s not the Obama flag. It’s not the Racist White Cops Flag. It’s not the Democrat flag or the Republican flag. It’s the American flag, and it represents you, even as you stomp across it with all the righteous fury an undergrad can muster. When you disrespect it, you are disrespecting everyone who helped create the greatest democracy the world has ever seen.
But mostly, you’re just making a fool out of yourself.