The Star-Spangled Banner provides the majestic musical/visual symbol of the Constitution I swore to support and defend as a Navy officer. My indefinitely binding oath requires standing for the National Anthem and kneeling to pray for the country. 

The Star-Spangled Banner is a majestic musical and visual symbol of the Constitution I swore to support and defend when I was a navy officer. My indefinitely binding oath requires standing for the national anthem and kneeling to pray for the country.

These days, however, most professional sports plus ESPN, Nike, etc., endorse kneeling during playing of the anthem, as if disparaging the country could promote social justice. Veterans understand that settling grievances requires revering and defending the essence of our country found in the truths of the Declaration of Independence and the preamble to our Constitution. When members of the armed forces make the ultimate sacrifice, their remains are wrapped in the flag in remembrance of intangible personal liberties  represented by these documents. When they are buried the flag is removed, elegantly folded and given to a spouse, child, sibling or parent.



Previously, success was defined by marriage, raising kids, careers, etc. Now a fashionable consensus defines success as the willingness to adjust behaviors so as to validate the emotional damage others have decided to inflict upon themselves for endless perceived aggressions, insults and prejudices. The instigators gain prestige but lack dreams to pursue or accomplishments to celebrate. The subservient parties embrace costless moral superiority by holding themselves and the country in disgust. Both share peaceful defilement.

I will always choose success through the hazards and uncertainties of personal freedom over sheltering within codependent relationships. This country needs a new birth of freedom and must remain faithful to the Constitution as the embodiment of American ideals.

NOLAN NELSON

Redmond, Oregon

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