This afternoon, Senator McCain and Gov. Sarah Palin spoke at a rally held in Colorado during a stopover en route to Indiana. The crowd waiting to get into the rally was lined up over a mile and a half. Thousands of American flags were distributed to the large crowd of the ticket's supporters. These flags were from an interesting story reported by the Denver Post.
According to the Denver Post, a worker at Invesco Field came upon 12,000 American flags unused by the Democratic National Convention . They were stuffed into large garbage bags and on the way to standard garbage disposal. This brought up issues of proper flag disposal.
Damon Jones, DNCC spokesperson, called the allocation of the flags to the crowd 'a political stunt'. He did not, however, explain why the bags of flags were being disposed of in such a manner.
Proper flag disposal is performed regularly by organizations like the Boy Scouts. My son was present for a few of the official service and ceremonies during his days with his troop. The VFW also performs the ceremony. Not to be sexist, Girl Scouts do it, too.
First, some history. President Truman officially established Flag Day at the suggestion of the Elks. President Truman was an Elk. So is my husband, though not active now. My father in law was a life long member, too.
Section 8k of the Flag Code states: "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." Part of the process is cutting the flag into small pieces before burning, so as not to burn a whole flag. Sometimes, when the flag is expensively, finely made and large, the stars are cut out separately and kept. The idea is to avoid the image of a whole burning flag.
The symbols of our democracy, of our nation, are important. Pride in country demands dignified respect of her symbols.