I round the corner to the supermarket. Oh no, the beautiful huge American flag is half staff again. My hearts sinks recalling that there has been another mass shooting.

Poor Old Glory, not flying high and proud, but hanging her head in shame. My thoughts go to the innocent victims and their families, and I say a prayer.

I think of our first flag with only 13 stars for the original colonies, and how men fought and died for our independence from the British.The Star Spangled Banner that flew so proudly over Fort McHenry during the War of 1812 and inspired Francis Scott Key to write the poem that became our National Anthem.

The flag that the Marines raised so honorably over Iwo Jima where they had fought so bravely for our freedom. The same flag the first responders raised on 9/11. Although it was tattered and dirty it proclaimed our country would prevail.The same flag that I pledged allegiance to every morning at school.  The flag that I was taught to respect and raise high on the flagpole at sunrise and take down at sunset, and never let it touch the ground.

My sad thoughts are our flag is half staff so often now will it ever rise again and fly high and proud?  This beautiful red white and blue banner, a symbol of our freedom so beloved by  Americans of all races and religions must not be defiled again.

Where did we go wrong?

We have so many humanitarians in this country, so many charitable people. We have organizations for research and medical help for every type of diseases. We have welfare departments to help the poor and disadvantaged, we have food banks to feed the hungry. We have free clinics for those who cannot afford medical care. We try hard to help the poor and the disabled.

We walk, we run, we swim, we have buckets of ice water thrown on our heads for charity. We go out in the cold to try to save the homeless. Little children give up their birthday presents for others less fortunate, they set up lemonade stands for charity.

There are good Samaritans everywhere. They pull people from burning cars, they jump into freezing water to save people from drowning. We give and give to our favorite causes hoping to help someone get well, have enough to eat and a decent place to live. So much love for our fellow man, so much kindness.

And yet an angry, deranged mob of our own citizens storm our Capitol building, our citadel of freedom, and defile our flag and our seat of government. I ask you: What more can we do? God knows we try.

May the Star-Spangled Banner fly high and proud once again over our beloved country.


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