Misusing National Symbols is Stolen Valor

A recurring complaint of the current administration by President-elect Biden is “The Words of a President Matter.”  Its more, much more, than words that matter.  The Fascist right, not to be confused with principled conservatives like Romney and Murkowski, and Roberts, of not just stealing government, our money, our security, and our rights, they like to wrap themselves in the trappings of our patriotic past and somehow claim that they are the keepers of Americas traditions.  We need to fight back.

It’s not the most significant abuse we saw yesterday but as I was watching the news, I was appalled to see some of our most sacred national symbols usurped by traitorous rabble.  They can have the battle flag of the Confederate Army, that’s a symbol of treason and appropriate for their cause but what right to they have to sully the history of the Culpeper Militia, the Tejas Revolutionaries at Gonzales, the various states of our country, our military, and Continental Army?  All these flags were present at the invasion of the Capitol, along with various adulterated versions the US Flag and men mascaraing as Native Americans or colonial minutemen.  THESE ARE NOT THEIR SYMBOLS AND THEY HAVE NO RIGHT TO MISAPPROPRIATE THEM FOR THEIR CAUSE!  Unfortunately, like so much that has happened during the rise of these hatemongers, we have stood idly by and allowed them to be stolen.   As these symbols are stolen and their meanings changed to symbols of hate and oppression, so goes our national identity.

The Betsy Ross flag was intended to be a symbol of unity.  Thirteen stars and thirteen stripes for the thirteen united states that formed our early republic.  Thanks to recent usurpation, many people now view this flag, a rallying point for men loyal to our revolution, as symbol offensive due to its connection to the United States’ slavery era.  Yes, slavery was legal at the time this flag represented our country but that is a coincidence not the intent of the symbol.  Nonetheless, its now commonly used by white supremacist so the coincidence becomes more significant.

Similarly, when Santa Anna demanded the residents of Gonzales surrender their cannon, the Texas militia, following the example of the Spartans at Thermopylae, responded “come and take it.”  This is a symbol of people who stand up AGAINST at tyrant, not those who wish to anoint an unelected king. 

Seeing men in military uniforms, uniforms that they were given after they swore to defend and uphold the Constitution of the United States, attack Senators and Congressmen in chambers is beyond repulsive.  Seeing men dressed in tricorned hats and regimentals deface our nation’s Capital is sickening.  White men, who likely never met a Native American, beating their chests in ceremonial dress for any political movement should be considered a hate crime. Somehow, this is all now just “free speech” making those of us who are offended the villains.  It’s just plain wrong.

Adulterated flags, especially when those flags bear the faces or names of politicians or political organizations should be no different than flag burning.  I find it ironic that we get offended when someone in a foreign land with no allegiance to the USA burns our flag but we have no problem plastering Donald Trump’s face on the damn thing. 

And then there’s the Culpeper flag.  Perhaps I am oversensitive to the appropriation of this flag because my ancestors served in the Culpeper Militia but I am very offended when I see hate groups use the rattlesnake as their rally point.  The rattlesnake became a symbol for the colonies before the French and Indian War when Franklin published a strident article in his Pennsylvania Gazette condemning the British practice of sending convicts to the American colonies. When I see criminals using this flag, I am ready to “return the favor” by sending a bunch of rattlesnakes back to England to be dispensed in the gardens of the noblemen who sent the convicts.  Perhaps we can start with the Trump family.

I know that pirates have long used the tactic of flying the flags of their victims to lure them in.  That is clearly what is happening with our current batch of undesirables and deplorables but do not be fooled.  They hope to steal the good name and reputations of our institutions to lend legitimacy to their nefarious acts.  As reenactors and living historians, WE the keepers of these symbols.  If we don’t defend them, they will be lost. Pirates should be imprisoned and HANGED!  The use of these symbols by political hate groups is Stolen Valor!

The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.

Attributed to Edmund Burke , including by John F Kennedy in a speech in 1961.

Its time we add the MAGA hats and other Trump insignia to the list of hate symbols with the swastika.

Published by Michael Carver

My goal is to bring history alive through interactive portrayal of ordinary American life in the late 18th Century (1750—1799) My persona are: Journeyman Brewer; Cordwainer (leather tradesman but not cobbler), Statesman and Orator; Chandler (candle and soap maker); Gentleman Scientist; and, Soldier in either the British Regular Army, the Centennial Army, or one of the various Militia. Let me help you experience history 1st hand!

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    1. Maybe not five years but certainly the last 3 or so and DEFINATELY NOW. Just because people were duped into supporting Trump early on (most were more AGAINST Clinton than for Trump) doesn’t make them all evil but those who wear them now are intent upon suppressing the rights of other.

      MAGA hats are the new Mafia attire…

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