Monday, July 28, 2003

Respect for the flag

Drudge (shudder) is reporting that Bush violated the United States Code by signing a flag in Livonia, Mich. It's true, of course, but why hasn't anyone busted Fox News yet for slapping the flag all over their commericals yet? The U.S.C. clearly states that the "flag should never be used for advertising purposes in any manner whatsoever."

Update: Some great writing on the issue from Matt Bivens at The Nation:

Is this nitpicking? Yes and no. On the one hand, it's more a faux pas than a crime, and certainly not that important in the grand scheme of things. The Republic will survive. On the other hand, our leaders reveal their true selves in small things. Signing one's autograph on something -- a baseball, a photograph, a scrap of paper -- is supposed to make that inconsequential something more valuable. But the flag of democracy was long ago consecrated far above a mere president's poor power to add or detract. A true patriot would understand that instinctively -- particularly if he also happened to be the US president at a time of war -- and would recoil if offered a flag and asked to scribble his name on it.


He also gives a different link to the photo, for those who just can't stomach visiting Drudge.


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