Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Why Today Will NOT Be "Burn the American Flag" For Me

My flag flying outside my house symbolizing my gratitude to be an American citizen.
Despite all of the hatred and hardships, we are given much freedom and many choices.

Lots of talk about different types of flags in America lately.  People taking them down, putting them up, burning them, stomping on them, selling them, buying them, or just ignoring them. There's no doubt about the injustice many Americans face on a daily basis. As we work through these important issues, I feel we need to be reminded that we still live in a great country which gives us many freedoms. Our American flag is a symbol of these freedoms.

In case you haven't is "Burn the American Flag" America .

Declared by a group of  activists (American citizens at that) who apparently think by burning the American flag they can disarm the NYPD.  I'm not going to talk about their reasoning or try to rationalize their motives. If you really care to give them more attention, Google it. I learned a long time ago that changing people's minds is impossible. People change their own minds, usually by calmly listening to or reading about a different perspective explained through simple reasoning.

Here is a short, simple, yet powerful list of reasons for not burning the American flag today (or ever) which are connected to the freedoms we all have, no matter what race, gender or socio-economic class you are labeled:

The freedom to love.

The freedom to have children or not.

The freedom to raise our children the way we feel is the best way to raise them.

The freedom to love our children and others as much as we wish.

The freedom to choose who we want to be friends with and who we do not.

The freedom to sit on a friends' back patio and talk about something that we are sad about, or better yet, laugh all night long.

The freedom to keep our bodies healthy and our minds open.

The freedom to rock out to our favorite tunes.

The freedom to earn a free education.

The freedom to have a job.

The freedom buy something, to own something.

The freedom to dance.

The freedom to be wild, weird, quiet, loud, calm, crazy, unique, funny, classy, sassy, strong, weak, proud, humble...whoever you are.

The freedom to play.

The freedom to make mistakes.

The freedom to get outta town.

The freedom to practice any religion we choose.

The freedom to kick back and have a few beers.

The freedom to vote for any political party we decide at every election.

The freedom to dress anyway we desire.

The freedom to call our loved ones and catch up.

The freedom to celebrate.

The freedom to marry anyone, anywhere.

The freedom to help a stranger or a stranger help you.

The freedom to change our minds about what we think.

These all come with sacrifice, made by each and every one of us. They also come with great service to our nation: made by my grandpa, my dad, my uncle, my friends and people who don't even have a clue who I am, but care enough to protect me. 

America is not perfect. We live here by choice, understanding that while we have the freedom to confront oppression, we are responsible for honoring our country. Burning a symbol of our freedom extinguishes the respect for our freedom.

So if a group of activists want to declare today 
"Burn The American Flag" day... 
then I declare it 
"Don't Burn the American Flag" day!

Happy July 4th--Fly your flag high and proud!

 "You might have to walk the fine line, you might take the hard line…and somewhere on the way, you might find out who you are.  I live in America, help me out."


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