Rules on handling of American flag overlooked in controversy about Peak 1
This letter is in response to the controversy surrounding the flag on Peak 1 and what it means. It seems to me that everyone has missed some fundamental rules governing the flag and how it is displayed.
Before any flag was placed, a responsible American would have found out the rules governing the placement of said flag. Why? For a variety of reasons, one of which would be that our forefathers fought and died for the freedoms symbolized by the flag.
So a little respect should be shown for the people who sacrificed all, so that we could have a controversy about the flag.
Another reason to check the rules is for the people who died on 9-11, not just the Americans who were in those buildings, but for the humans who were in those buildings, because the flag is also a symbol for truth and justice for all, not just Americans.
Here are some of these rules and the Web site where they can be found – http://www.ushistory.org/betsy/flagetiq.htm.l
n The flag should not be displayed on days when the weather is inclement, except when an all-weather flag is displayed.
n The flag should never touch anything beneath it, such as the ground, the floor, water or merchandise.
n The flag should never be fastened, displayed, used, or stored in such a manner as to permit it to be easily torn, soiled or damaged in any way.
n The flag should never be used for advertising purposes in any manner whatsoever. It should not be embroidered on such articles as cushions or handkerchiefs and the like, printed or otherwise impressed on paper napkins or boxes or anything that is designed for temporary use and discard. Advertising signs should not be fastened to a staff or halyard from which the flag is flown.
n The flag, when it is in such condition that it is no longer a fitting emblem for display, should be destroyed in a dignified manner, preferably by burning.
Based on these few tenets of the rules governing our flag I would like everyone to take a look around and see how the flag is displayed everywhere – in car windows, in house windows, on T-shirts, on napkins, on bumper stickers, on plastic, on wood, on metal, on just about everything you can imagine.
So, I ask the organizers of these hikes to take it upon themselves to; 1) make sure the flag flown is an all-weather flag; 2) if it touches the ground or the like, to rebuild the structure so that the flag does not touch the ground; and 3) that the flag is properly secured and fastened so it does not tear.
I would also request a periodic check-up to make sure that the flag memorial is still a memorial and not a ripped up flag, toppled over due to the inclement weather atop Peak 1.
If people really want to memorialize the victims of 9-11 by placing a flag atop Peak 1, then I propose you do it in a manner befitting a flag that has weathered quite a few storms and meant so much to so many different people.
One more thing, next time you see a veteran, make sure you thank him or her for the ability to cause such a controversy over something they were willing to die for.
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