Burn that flag...
just ask permission...
Written by Tom Adkins
What do we do about people who want to burn the American flag? You
know...those folks who want to stomp all over it, or spit on it to
sort of "statement." Some say the first Amendment gives us the
desecrate the American flag. Others want to make it illegal. This is
one. What should we do? I can solve this one easily. I believe we
have a simple requirement. Let flag desecration be legal, but you
have three sponsors who will give you written permission. Those
should be from a panel of experts who might be considered
"qualified" to give
First, you need a signature of a war veteran. How about a Marine who
at Iwo Jima?
The men who raised that flag over Iwo Jima did so on the bodies of
thousands of dead Americans, who gave their lives so a few could
flag in defiant claim of that last island in a long, bloody march to
Japanese. What did those Marines think about the flag as they
comrades get slaughtered? Every battle with the Japanese was
day meant half of everyone you knew would be dead tomorrow. Your own
future was a coin flip away from a bloody death in a place your
pronounce. Or you could ask a Vietnam vet who spent years in a POW
prison, tortured in small, filthy cells unfit for a dog. Or Korean
who rescued half a nation from communism, or the Desert Storm
who repulsed a bloody dictator from raping and pillaging an innocent
to find people from a foreign land kiss our flag as we drove through
To every American soldier who ever fought for the United States,
represented your mother and father, your sister and brother, your
neighbors, your fellow countrymen...In fact it stands for your
guaranteed by your nation. Those who fought, fought for that flag.
Those who died, died for that flag. I wonder what they would say if
asked their permission to burn a flag?
Next, you need a signature of an immigrant. Preferably one who left
family behind. Their brothers and sisters languish in their native
subject to tyranny, poverty and failure, while America offers
Some have seen friends and family be tortured and murdered by their
government for daring to do many things we take for granted every
Many give their lives in the struggle just to touch our shores, even
turns its back and returns them to face persecution once again in
land. For those who risked everything simply for the chance to
American...what kind of feelings do they have for the flag when they
allegiance to it for the first time? Go to a naturalization ceremony
and see for
yourself, the tears of pride, the thanks, the love and respect of
this nation, as
they finally embrace the flag of our nation as their own. Then, walk
ask one of them if it would be OK to spit on the flag.
Last, you need a signature from someone living in a foreign land who
get here. Say, Rwanda. Or maybe Bosnia. Maybe even Haiti. You might
to move fast, as they flee oppressors who attack them with machete's
shoot at them randomly in a marketplace. I'm sure they will never
your sanity as they duck for cover.
The writers of the Declaration of Independence are long gone. I
they thought of the American flag as they drafted that document?
such an act would drag the nation into war with England, the
on earth. Did the flag mean anything to them?
They knew failure of independence meant more than just a
meant a noose would be snugly stretched around their necks. I wonder
they'd feel if someone asked their permission to toss the flag in a
In the absence of family, the absence of the precious shores of
home, in the
face of overwhelming odds and often in the face of death itself, the
flag inspires those who believe in the American dream, the American
the American vision...
Americans who don't appreciate the flag are usually those who don't
appreciate this nation. And those who appreciate this nation
So if you would, before you desecrate the American flag, before you
spit on it,
before you ignore it or despise it...please ask permission. Not from
constitution. Not from some obscure law. Not from the politicians or
Please ask permission from those who founded the nation. Please ask
who defended our shores so that we may be free today. Please ask
who fought to reach our shores so that they may partake in the
And then, please ask permission from those who died wishing they
once ... or once again...see, touch or kiss the flag that stands for
the United States of America...the greatest nation on earth.