The Freeport Flag Ladies’ consistent display of our flag is commendable and should be appreciated by all.

I am a retired U.S. Air Force officer from the 1950s. I do not believe that flag etiquette allows people to use our flag as clothing, beach towels or other than an accurate representation of our flag.

The U.S. Marines have a booklet on flag etiquette that is instructive and should be consulted when flag displays are contemplated.

I hope the Flag Ladies will continue to honor America with their flag displays — and I hope they will stop using flag materials for clothing. A simple flag patch suitably displayed on one’s garment should be used instead.

Dick Brooks

Phillips 

Glenn Beck rally reactions take vastly different tacks 

In response to an Aug. 14 letter from Janet Romano about a Bill Nemitz column on Glenn Beck, “Columnist too quick to criticize,” I know that people are invested in the media they consume. That’s especially true when it comes to the extreme minority of Americans, 2.5 million, who watch and believe the distorted view of history and the present day that is presented by Glenn Beck and all of the commentators at Fox “News.”

But citizens of this country are responsible to make an effort that goes beyond the power button.

Beck is not a teacher, he is an ex-shock-jock radio entertainer and a cynical one at that. Ironically, his cynicism is directed at his faithful viewers, to whom he presents an absolutely false world view to make money. They are being manipulated and lied to on a daily basis. This strategy is so effective that they are moved to defend him, parroting Beck as if he was speaking himself.

Romano’s assertion about the White House not phoning to contest errors is simply ridiculous. Does she want to make the people being lied about responsible for the lies?

Does she understand that the reason Fox and Beck are now scurrying to include black people is because they recently learned that their audience is comprised of 98.6 percent white viewers? Again, their inclusion is contrived and again cynical.

Terms like fascism and socialism actually have meanings and historical significance that people can discover on their own. When they do, they will find Beck’s versions so completely false and misleading it might finally drive them in anger to shut him off.

If viewers want to learn history, go back to school. The choice to learn it from an entertainer is costing us all plenty. An emotional defense of him is troubling, to say the least. Viewers don’t know him, yet they defend him as if they do. That’s more troubling still.

John Rogers

Cape Elizabeth 

I went to the Glenn Beck rally in Washington with one of my grandsons, who wanted to go and so I went, too. We went down there on a bus sponsored by Americans for Prosperity. They (we) are working for smaller government and lower taxes. We attended the 7 p.m. banquet the night before, which was a tribute to President Ronald Reagan.

Michelle Bachmann and George Will were featured speakers. At the beginning a man sang the National Anthem. To my surprise everyone in the place sang along with him. There must have been 2,500 there all joining in. This was a pleasant surprise. We sat with people from North Carolina.

Saturday we went to the Lincoln Memorial and the crowd had already gotten huge. We made our way as close as we could and that was back about a third of the way down the Reflecting Pool from the memorial.

There were huge screens all over with sound. We were packed from the Lincoln Memorial all the way to the Washington Monument. I have no idea how many, I would guess from what I saw 600,000 to 800,000.

Upon leaving I looked purposely to see if we had left a mess. I saw no litter anywhere. Everyone had taken their refuse with them.

The message was nonpolitical and very inspiring. Many from Maine attended. I had a good conversation with a guy from Montana who was there in a wheelchair. There were people from every state, Canada and some other countries. For that many people to gather and have no trouble, leave no mess is a miracle in itself.

I was there and know what happened.

John Roberts

South Portland 

I was worried about the United States until I went to the Americans for Prosperity Summit Aug. 27 and Glenn Beck’s Restoring Honor Rally the 28th.

Some 2,500 AFP families, retirees and regular working folks from all over the country gathered in Washington to learn how to advance economic freedom, thereby defending the American Dream. Our numbers showed that we are a force to be reckoned with!

On Saturday AFP joined hundreds of thousands of activists at the Lincoln Memorial to attend Glenn Beck’s rally.

Smiling people hurried from all directions to the National Mall. Some carried flags, pushed little children in strollers, or carried them on their shoulders. Many people wore the bright Restoring Honor T-shirts. The air was charged!

Some had arrived at 3 a.m. to be close to the Lincoln Memorial. 9 a.m. the Mall was packed, but crowds still came, stretching back toward Constitution Avenue.

The rally was neither political nor a “pit of hatred” as the media hoped. It was deeply respectful of Martin Luther King Jr. and his achievements. Glenn’s message was for anyone: Be truthful and honest in your dealings, value family and country, pray if you can, and look to God to guide you as the Founding Fathers did.

In spite of the crush and the hours standing in the sun, folks were happy, friendly and so patient. It was a wonderful atmosphere in which strangers conversed as neighbors. I was proud to be among them. At the end of the rally the grounds were pristine.

A friend and fellow AFP member said, “That amazing gathering still resonates and fills each of us who attended with unbounded joy and hope that we can restore the values this country was founded on.” Amen.

Rose Marie Russell

Westbrook 

Nuclear waste, oil spill show how little we care 

Irresponsibility is a terrible thing, especially with burying nuclear waste. If they can make/manufacture the stuff, they should be responsible encough to unmake/disassemble it.

They’re crowing now, saying they’ve cleaned up the oil spill on the ocean.

Anyone with a brain knows the oil is no longer floating. Like a dead body, it sinks. Oil is settling on the bottom of the ocean now, contaminating an unknowable amount of life.

Lee Myrbeck

Westbrook