Monday, June 15, 2009

Flag Worship Day (Roger Young)

Roger Young on the religious festival known as Flag Day:

Today is Flag Day- a time to reflect on the state and its supporter’s fascination, reverence and stodgy defense of it symbols.

Supporters bristle at the argument that such an obsession is akin to religious fervor. But all you have to do is examine the “disposal process” of these symbols when they become worn and unacceptable.

According to United States Code, Title 4, Chapter 1, Section 8(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."

What is considered “dignified” is where the religion-like, devotional solemnity comes into play. It seems there is no prescribed, universally accepted ceremony for proper disposal of the flag. There seem to be as many different disposal programs as there are organizations that venerate this piece of cloth. I guess you could consider each program a denomination- they all worship the same symbol but differ in the matter that their worship is executed. The Boy Scouts and the American Legion are certainly a couple of the most active flag-retiring organizations. The Scouts go as far as to warn participants that the flag is NOT to be considered “burned,” but “retired.”

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