Having the Freedom Doesn’t Mean You Should

After a full day of reading reasons why people should be allowed to burn our flag, I finally buckled down and wrote a response. But like all sensitive topics no one that should read this post will.

I get it. Anger causes us to do irrational things and to come up with irrational reasons why we should be able to do them. The difference in the current flag burning and the same action done during the Vietnam War is the reason why the action is being done. During the Vietnam War people burned the flag to protest the actions of America as a whole. They were ashamed of our nation and they did the only action they could think of that would garner the right kind of attention and it worked.

Today we see people burning the flag we love because they claim to love that flag… so they are burning it to show their love. They are protesting one man and in their outrage and protest they have made that one man the symbol of this country. One man! Let me be very clear here. The president represents the country and that is why he is the president. Trump is not America though. Trump IS NOT AMERICA! What the flag burners are really doing is making one man cause them to hate so much they are burning something they should love, and that isn’t right.

I keep seeing people say “well I know Veterans who are all for burning the flag!” I’d like some names. Who are you speaking of? Are you referring to the few veterans that are on CNN’s paid correspondent list? Can you really trust anyone on television these days? I can understand a veteran saying they protect the right to the action. I can’t mentally comprehend any veteran saying “burn that fucking flag!” No one I know would say that… and I know a few veterans personally. Like actually in person…

Having the freedom doesn’t mean you should. I have the freedom to not bath, but I’ll continue to do so. If Trump mentions bathrooms or tubs that won’t put me over the edge. I won’t start condemning bathtubs and restrooms worldwide just because I hate Trump. You see Trump doesn’t have that power over me. He won’t change my opinions on things even if he happens to align with my position. I won’t let people shame me either into changing my outlook simply so I stay on the opposite side of Trump. That is the problem I see with people right now and their need to separate everyone! Friends, family, church members, it doesn’t matter because everyone is drawing lines right now in my America. They are so angry and so ready to show their separation from a man they hate that they’ll try to rationalize something they would never have done a year ago.

So I ask you this in all seriousness. Will you burn my flag? Have you burned my flag before? Is Trump the reason you now hate my flag? If so… that is pathetic to me and sad. Living reactively to a single person is no way to live at all and that includes towards our president… whoever that may be.

Jason Chandler Cushman

-Opinionated Man




60 thoughts on “Having the Freedom Doesn’t Mean You Should

  1. I think fear makes people do really stupid things. That being said, I also think that some of the protesters…at any protest are just there because they want a place to be angry. I can’t get behind Trump. I simply can’t. He stands (or at least says he does) for all things opposite what I stand for.

    Will I go burn a flag? No. Because in all honesty, I don’t get how that changes anything. If we want to rise up against Trump and the likes we need to be smart and get more people out to vote next time. We also need to remember that the President is not the only one in power. VOTING is the only way to change anything and we get to vote more than once every 4 years. In my opinion protesting by burning the flag is just a waste of time.


  2. Interesting post. With freedom comes responsibility. With democracy comes the possibility that the wrong man or women being elected. That means that you can chose to be responsible enough not to burn flags and use the next chance to elect a better person for a very important job. But freedom and democracy is apparently difficult for many to understand.


  3. I agree, this Trump victory has a lot of people acting irrationally out of pure emotion. It threw people for a curveball and people don’t handle the unknown. Even Skaamoogians are divided (despite a good majority of them doing the same actions as his most extreme supporters).

    I say let him lead but stay with the values you, and your country, have always had. America is still a democracy and if things go to wild in a Trump America, then calm heads should be able to right it. Not irrational reactive actions. That’s not the America I grew up knowing.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Well said! No matter who the president is, he or she is not the people. WE, the people, make America what it is. If we want a good country, then let US make it a good country. Division is not the way to do that and sadly, division is exactly what people (media included) are promoting. Burn a flag because you despise someone? That’s about as ridiculous as me burning down someone’s house because I don’t like their landscaper. You had me cracking up when speaking about vets… “Like actually in person”. Same here and I can’t imagine, nor have I heard a single one them (there are several) say that it’s okay to burn the flag. As one person said yesterday, to burn the flag is a direct insult to the people who have fought and died for this country. It is a shameful act and the people doing it should be ashamed. There is never a cause for that.

    Liked by 3 people

  5. This is my favoritist thing ever. Well said sir. To all the sheeple of this world…personal freedom is a thing. Just ask yourself “what do I think about this?”…liberating. Anywho well done man. Fistbunp

    Liked by 2 people

  6. 2/3 of my comment disappeared when I hit send so I just look like a goddamn flag burning supporter, which I am not. I essentially believe there is a time and place, though. I scoff at the pussies burning flags because they don’t like our future president. I nod my head when I see photos of flag burning during the civil rights movement.

    Liked by 2 people

  7. I think flag burning is actually a very effective way to protest. It commands the emotional attention of a large percentage of people. What you do or say next once you have this attention better summon even stronger emotions than you burning someones flag.

    Liked by 2 people

    • I disagree. It commands the wrong attention and you’ve already lost the support of half those people before you spoke. If that isn’t the goal, well burn away. But I think it is a horrible way for people to draw attention against ONE MAN. This isn’t the Vietnam War all over again, so I don’t see it the same way.

      Liked by 2 people

      • For what it’s worth, I remember my next sentence beginning with “Though, I don’t think it’s a good way, it’s nothing I would do, or be a party of, but it’s effective by definition … etc … and then I rambled a whole bunch but I really think what I was rambling about would have conveyed how serious I do take it. I will be honest, though, I think throwing trash on the ground, sullying what we should graciously respect and maintain, littering what we should be thankful to have, is actually more insulting to those who fought and served for us to have this bit of Earth as our own, those that shed blood to keep us free do things like flag-burning in this Country. My facebook feed let me know how much like hippie bullshit they thought that sounded in record time. Opinions are trouble-makers.

        Liked by 2 people

  8. Never, but I also don’t allow it to touch the floor and family feels the same. Respect is hard to find these days. I just feel so privileged to live here, I couldn’t disrespect the flag of our country. I also think the pledge of allegiance should be said in schools. Maybe I’m just old fashioned.🇺🇸

    Liked by 3 people

  9. I am an immigrant a naturalized citizen and a veteran (18 years Air Force). I would never let the US flag even touch the ground and I most certainly would not even think of burning the flag. It is too precious to me.
    Great post!!!!!

    Liked by 3 people

  10. I’m sorry, but I can’t call a lot of today’s ex-military “veterans”, I know too many, from my days teaching college, who were only in it for the free tuition. Then, when we went to war (good or bad) they wanted out because they didn’t believe in war. These are probably the “vets” who agree in burning the flag.

    We are one of the few countries that doesn’t require enlistment, as a result we get “Commander-in-Chiefs” who have never served. Would you want a general who just graduated from today’s liberal colleges to lead the Marines? Stupid.

    College should come after military conscription so they can appreciate what it really costs to have the freedom to attend any college and study any major. Then if they burn the flag at least they understand what it means.

    Rant over.

    Liked by 3 people

    • I served four years in the marines albeit peacetime and then went to college once I got out. Therefore, I know where you’re coming from here and I too think everyone should serve before entering college. The military prepares one for live a lot better than college.

      Liked by 3 people

    • I’m not so sure I’d rant on that, but I get why you do. At least they are serving while how many don’t? They are getting the benefits that ALL VETERANS and ACTIVE MILITARY should get and should have gotten. Nothing wrong with that in my book.

      Liked by 1 person

  11. I saw your flag (US) being burned in Quebec City many years ago when they were forcing the NAFTA deal being signed. I have it on a video. I was shocked but I fully understand why they did it. Looking back they had very good reason to do it.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. So much emotion across political lines, and… cable news is so often just junk.

    I already get that flag burning is protected under the First Amendment, but in agreement with Bradley’s uncle, it is a damned stupid way to exercise your rights.

    My values are sure unaffected by the President-elect. Rarely agree, and even when I do, I know he doesn’t quite understand, so… never really an agreement. lol

    …You’ll never see me burn Old Glory! 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  13. I know a veteran who had something to say about flag burning. I’ll never forget what my Uncle said to me before he died. He was serving in the Navy at Pearl Harbor when it was attacked. He said, “I didn’t fight for the flag, I fought for what it stands for – freedom. If someone wants to burn the flag, that is their right to protest and express themselves. It’s a damned stupid way, but if we locked people up for being stupid then there wouldn’t be many of us left around.”

    Liked by 10 people

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