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Monday, October 2, 2017

Honoring the great principles of the U.S. democracy ...

When I stand to say the Pledge of Allegiance and when I stand during a performance of the "Star-Spangled Banner," I am not honoring the men and women who have served in the U.S. armed forces. As much as I appreciate their service, when I stand with my hand over my heart, I am honoring the great principles of the U.S. democracy, as symbolized by the flag I salute in the pledge and in the national anthem.
I accept that people salute our flag -- or salute our flag in differing ways -- for a variety of reasons, a variety of beliefs, and a variety of feelings. I may not see eye to eye with all those actions, reasons, beliefs, and feelings -- in fact, some of them bug me, a lot. But I also know I must accept them because each of us has our own attitudes, experiences, and perspectives in how and why we express our patriotism.
I will not accept, however, the words and behavior of people who act as though their expression of patriotism is the only one that's appropriate and acceptable. They are wrong.

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