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Politics

Because opinions. I have them.

Burn the Flag

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That title is meant to be incendiary.  It is not hyperbole or rhetoric.  If you feel the need to include a burning flag in your protest, please do.  

I'm a military wife.  I've lived in military towns for the past ten years.  I had to pull out a calculator to do the math there.  For a politics obsessed liberal who came of age during the Bush administration, it felt much longer than ten years.  Over the years I've learned two things.  One, every holiday down to Easter and National Waffle Day is about dead soldiers.  If you think it's about anything else, you're wrong.  You should always be grateful and thinking about the troops.  That is the one and only way to support them.  Two, the only colors that matter are red, white, and blue.  You like purple?  You're wrong.  Purple isn't even a color here in 'Murica.  And that flag?  You should prostrate yourself before it and worship it.  After you go to church, of course.  

I'm being a little unfair.  Not everyone in the military is like that, nor is every military town all in on the bullshit nationalism.  It's not completely untrue, either.  There is a vibe, and those of us who don't completely agree tend to just keep our heads down and mouths shut.  Mostly.  So when Donald Trump tweeted about jailing people who burn the flag, my instinct was to roll my eyes and shake my head and move along.  

And then I remembered what my Facebook feed looked like when Colin Kaepernick decided simply to kneel during the national anthem in protest.  It seems that so many military members and their families simply don't understand what it is they fight for.  Perhaps they've not read the Constitution or maybe they never learned what the American Revolution was about.  More than the revolution, this is what our entire history has been about.  Our foremothers and forefathers didn't worship the flag.  Hell, they didn't even worship the system they created.  They paid homage to the process.  Their fealty was not with symbols.  They did not believe in our perfection or our greatness.  They were the antithesis of nationalistic.  

Before you get your Captain America panties all in a bunch, consider the decision of the Supreme Court in Texas v. Johnson.  That decision was not simply "yay flag burning for all!" Rather, it affirmed that as an act of protest against the government, burning the flag is a political act that does not endanger its symbolism or standing.  These acts served as the backbone of our revolution in the 1700s.  To jail someone - or worse, revoke citizenship - would be a direct assault on the principles on which we were founded.  

This tweet is an additional reminder that there remains a vacancy on the Supreme Court.  The obstructionists in Congress have made sure that Trump will get to fill that spot.  If he cannot intelligently comprehend the Constitution, how can he fill that vacancy?  How can we, as the people and guardians of our own republic allow this?  Those are angry "how did we get here" thoughts for another day.