With July 4th upon us, I am seeing videos everywhere on flag burning. I cannot believe in 2014 we still have to deal with these issues.
As an attorney, I am the first one to mention the First Amendment & freedom of speech. If you oppose war or the way our Government handles things; that’s fine. I oppose a lot of things. Now, imagine I oppose you or your beliefs, and I decide to burn whatever you hold sacred to show my opposition. Doesn’t make any sense, does it? At the minimum, you will find it disrespectful.
Again, I know you have certain disagreements with Our Government; I’m cool with that. See, that is what makes this country so great- you can disagree with Our Government and you will not be thrown in jail. But, I also understand that those that protected Our Country then and now, do it for the simple reason that they honor and respect everything that our Flag and Our Nation symbolizes.
You got a problem with the Government, campaign against them. Do peaceful demonstrations, emails, whatever you want. But understand when you burn an American Flag, someone died protecting that Flag. Since I am not in the Military, I cannot begin to fathom what it is like to be at war and watch your friends and fellow soldiers get killed before you or die in your arms. If you are lucky, you come out alive.
The physical scars of war may heal with time but unfortunately, the psychological scars do not. Imagine being a parent to a child that is overseas and always dreading “that call.” And again, they did it for what? Money? Fame? Fortune? Nah, they did it so guys like me can live in a safe & free society. They protect us based on a concept that is so powerful that it cannot be bought or perverted. In return, the Military asks for nothing- except of course for respect, which they obviously have earned.
Multiple times a year I post on social media that I do not live in a perfect country but I live in the best damn country in the world! My parents fled Cuba in 1963 to avoid communism. In return, this Great Nation accepted my family with open arms, allowing me to pursue my dream of being an attorney and my brother a dentist (my other dream was to be a shortstop for the New York Yankees and my brother wanted to be a pitcher for the Baltimore Orioles, but neither team returned our calls). The least I could do to not only honor and an attempt to payback, if not thank the United States for opening its door to us, is to respect it and everything it cherishes.
Now, you flag burners that have issues with this; I’ll be happy to represent you before Immigration to renounce your citizenship and I will also purchase your one-way ticket out of here. Don’t worry about packing; I’ll also get you all the Che T-shirts you want. And I wouldn’t worry about money either because I am pretty sure those that are damn proud to wear the Red, White & Blue, will help me get all the funding I need when I max out my credit card.
Because you see, that’s the thing about Our Country; we disagree with each other all the time, hell, sometimes we even fight with each other. But, at the end of the day, this Country always has and always will stand UNITED to fight against any threat, whether foreign or domestic.
BTW, if you happen to return to a country that is at war with us or will be, then I suggest you get used to the sound of Hendrix, b/c this is what you are going to hear 24/7 before Our Troops step in and kick your ass!
God Bless the Greatest Military and the Greatest Nation in the World.
Come home soon, the first round is on me!
That is me wearing the vest of my good friend Richard Stark, Army Cold War Veteran, on July 4th, 2014, on a ride to free Sgt. Andrew Tahmooressi, the Marine that was imprisoned in Mexico.