Just a few days before Thanksgiving, the Atlanta City council agreed with the veterans of American Legion Post 233, that the flag display overlooking International Boulevard is displayed incorrectly, and will be replacing it soon. The heart of the two year-old issue is the orientation of a US flag in a multi-national display over International Boulevard. The veterans claimed that the stars should be in the upper left-hand corner, instead of the upper-right (as it is currently displayed). Originally, the city had maintained that there was nothing out of place; however, they have come around to the veterans’ point of view. Some see this as a victory for the veterans and our flag, but I believe they are missing the point entirely.
These men are certainly honorable – they served their country with pride. However, I do feel that their time and energies could be put to better use. They should be more concerned with how our Constitution (both federal and state) have been ignored and violated by power-hungry politicians, judges and bureaucrats alike. Former Texas Democrat Congressman Greg Washington said “I prefer a man who will burn the flag and wrap himself in the Constitution to a man who will burn the Constitution and then wrap himself in the flag.” I believe Congressman Washington has it right. Instead of being concerned about a frivolous flag display, the veterans should be enraged by how our rights and liberties continue to be taken away at every turn. Consider mandatory seat-belt use for adults, draconian smoking bans, NSA surveillance, the Patriot Act, property taxes, TSA airport screenings, and the police state in general. The war on drugs [freedoms] alone has done more to shred our Fourth Amendment rights than almost anything else. Why aren’t these honorable men worried about what really matters?
Councilwoman Felicia Moore came out as an ally of the veterans and had this to say regarding the issue: “We want to make sure that we are honoring and respecting our flag, and the people who’ve served our country. And so it’s very big, because [I think] it reverberates outside the city of Atlanta that we take it very seriously to make sure that we get our protocol right.” It is a real shame that Ms. Moore does not feel that the Constitution is worthy of our honor and respect. John Bushwack, of American Legion Post 233, said “Our goal is not publicity, but to get the flag right. It’s our brothers in arms like Mr. Harris, who just showed up, uh, makes us so tenacious to make sure our flag, which was bought with a lot of blood, is properly displayed.” Mr. Bushwack, what about our Constitution, our natural rights? Were these not purchased with the blood of many patriots? Consider the opening line from the Pledge of Allegiance: “I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America, and to the Republic for which it stands.” The flag is merely a [symbolic] representation of this union of States, whereas the Constitution is the legal contract that reaffirms our natural rights. If we lose the flag, we still have our Constitution and our rights. If we lose the Constitution, we will have lost everything.
Jeremiah W Tant
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