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Letter: Americans are free to peacefully protest

Americans are free to peacefully protest

Beyond taking the country’s attention off of the various investigations of himself, why would President Trump provoke a national dispute over paying reverence to the flag during the recitation of the national anthem? With all of the issues on his plate domestically and internationally, why would he encourage a race-related argument using the NFL as a vehicle to exasperate the notion that patriotic disloyalty is abound in the NFL? Is this his way of putting a thorn in the side of NFL owners who rejected him as a hopeful franchise owner?

Throughout history, the flag has been representational of many aspects of our nation, several of which have been prodigious, others, not so much. The My Lai massacre, Vietnam, the oppression of Native Americans and the enslavement of Africans will not be remembered as celebrated moments in our history. No one is overtly “disrespecting” the flag; the flag itself is emblematic of the freedoms that make not venerating it an option and a right.

This president wants to build walls. He will not vigorously condemn white supremacy, neo-Nazi or Ku Klux Klan ideologies. And he seems to seek out situations wherein he can drive a wedge in already fractured circumstances. I cannot extol the virtues of celebrating a nation or its flag just for the credit of being a patriot. I am a patriot. I do honor and respect those who have heroically died for this nation and for all of the rights that have been bestowed upon every one of us, including the right to not stand for the national anthem.

James Galbo


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