Why I burn the flag
Flag-waving fools are destroying humanity.
This current illegal 'war' (why don't we declare war anymore? too chicken?) is costing me, you, and everyone else in our society big-time. What comes around goes around. It's infuriating and saddening, of course, but it can also be rich with nearly-amusing irony.
The case of the Care and Treatment of the Flag of the United States of America is one such irony that is on my mind today... see, I drove over the Stars and Stripes on my way home from work. Yep, fallen of the vehicle of some great Patriot or another. There was too much traffic for me to go back and get it - downright dangerous duty that - so I could burn the damned thing. Too bad.
Now personally, I could give a fuck about any flag, including that of the country I happen to have been born in. Just so you know where I'm coming from. But once a U.S. flag touches the ground, the thing is supposed to be burned. I've burned several personally, as a Boy Scout.
Joe Average citizen of the United States has been whipped into such a rabid, frothing, flag waving fervor that newspapers across the land are full of letters accusing any and all of treason. When flags have been burned in protest, the nationalistic frenzy reaches crescendo and all manner of venom and invective are hurled at the protesters.
Yes, this is the bitter-sweet irony. Flag burning is completely legal and is, indeed, a time-honored (some would say old and tired) method of protest. Meanwhile, the way the flag is being treated by Joe Average is actually completely illegal!
A few of many juicy tidbits, dig it:
US Code Title 36, section 176(d) The flag should never be used as wearing apparel, bedding, or drapery.
What?! Never? Not even my fancy sweater from Nordies? My tie? Oh my.
The right wing shock jocks on AM radio and the Freepers have been flipping out about the San Francisco cops - a bunch of 'em started a little posse that wore U.S. flag bandanas under their riot helmets, and they were ordered not to wear them. 'How could they be so unAmerican at a time like this?' Umm, moron - it's illegal to wear the freaking flag. The thing is supposed to always fly free and all. Isn't the supposed to be the point?
US Code Title 36, section 176(e) 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.
Like hanging off the antenna of my pickup?
US Code Title 36, section 176(i) The flag should never be used for advertising purposes in any manner whatsoever
Quick, call CNN, FOX, and MSNBC! Do it, or you're not patriotic! Do you respect the flag or not, damnit?
Your mission, patriotic flag-loving American, is to always carry a printout of USC Title 36 sections 173-178, with the relevant passages highlighted, and stop the flag abuse! Yes that includes rolling your flag onto its pole at the end of the day - fold it properly! Meanwhile, shut the hell up about flag burning.
One last tidbit, including an apt description of the present time:
176(k) The flag, when it is in such condition that it is no longer a fitting emblem for display, should be destroyed in a dignified way, preferably by burning
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