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Letter: American flag should never be disrespected

American flag should never be disrespected

Why has disrespect become popular and why does my generation think it’s brave disrespecting the symbol of our liberty?

As a soldier, I served on funeral details, where we laid dozens of men and women to rest. Dressed in our best uniform, meticulously checked and set to perfection, we carried our brothers and sisters, veterans from every generation, protected by the stars and stripes, to their last resting place, in front of their family. In perfect unity, the flag was folded with the utmost reverence. With the click of his heels, the sergeant in charge turned. He carried the flag of our free nation, folded with love and respect, into a perfect triangle, and presented it to a sobbing spouse or mother. The last gift these veterans bestowed on their families was this flag and what it stands for. While I stood there listening to taps, it gave me comfort to know their legacy will carry on.

People who disrespect the flag throw around the First Amendment of the Constitution but have no idea what true bravery is or the intestinal fortitude it takes any veteran not to act on his instincts to protect this symbol at any cost. I have no problems with free speech or protest; it’s one of the traits that sets our nation apart from the others and makes us so great. There are, however, other ways to go about it, ways that don’t spit in the face of those who provided and protected these rights.

Richard A. Carson