Flag Desecration in America

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Our flag is symbolic of all that is distinctly American: liberty, freedom, opportunity, McDonald’s, Wal-Mart, and NASCAR. These things are almost as significant to the essence of our country and culture as Jesus is to Christianity. Consequently, the American flag receives a status that is almost sacred. To harm our flag, it seems, might as well be an attack on our country. Unlike many other prominent countries in the world, the United States has only existed for just over 225 years. During the majority of those two and a quarter centuries, America was still undergoing many changes. Compared to countries like England, Spain, France, Germany, Russia, China, Japan, and numerous others, the US is quite young, and the roots of today’s America have not grown very deep. England, however, existed centuries before the US was even thought of, and the Chinese had formed an organized society even further back than that. Throughout the relatively short existence of the United States, our country has changed drastically in order to become what it is today. Compared to much of the world, America is just a teenager, eager to find its place in the world. The US is still developing, and, much like a teenager, we apparently feel the need to express ourselves very publicly. Just as a teen may plaster their first car with politically charged bumper stickers in order to show off who they are, we plaster our houses, vehicles, and even sometimes our clothes with the flag to show who we are as Americans. Though our country seems to have much international influence, we have not existed nearly long enough to give up on patriotism yet. In 1907, the US Supreme Court declared that, “To every true American the flag is the symbol of the nation’s power,” and that the flag also was, “the emblem of freedom in its truest, best sense.” (Tedford and Herbeck, 286) The flag reminds us (as

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