“It’s just a piece of fabric”. “He did it for attention”. “He just wanted to skip class”. These are the tweets you will read as you scroll through the comments on Twitter after ABC News posted the story of 18 year old Cole Dotson holding a fallen flag at his high school in Continental, Ohio. Reading through the twitter comments would get anyone who loves their country at least slightly infuriated, so I won’t post the tweets here. However, the reasoning of this should be addressed.
First of all, lets start with skipping class. If these people actually read the article, instead of overreacting at the title as most tend to do, they would know he didn’t skip class. Dotson was driving by his high school when he noticed the flag. He didn’t have school that day. But let’s say he did. Reports say he was only there for twenty minutes. I don’t care what lesson they would have learned in that classroom. There is not many lessons more important than having respect for your country and the freedoms that come along with it. No math class, or science class is going to teach a lesson as important as showing respect for the people who gave their lives so you could live yours.
“He did it for attention”, say some of the ignorant twitter users who failed to read the whole story. Cole wasn’t the one who posted the picture. He wasn’t the one that shared it 60,000 times and made it go viral. He certainly wasn’t doing it to impress other students of his high school. There aren’t many kids who are so desperate for attention they have to stand in front of a high school holding a flag. The “doing it for attention” claim is ridiculous.
However, out of all the tweets that would burn the insides of some Americans, there was one reoccurring that stood out amongst all of them. “It’s just a piece of fabric” Try telling that to someone who has served this country. Whether it is as part of the armed forces or a local policeman, people serve this country everyday to protect the rights and liberties that Americans deserve. To call the American Flag just a piece of fabric is completely ignorant to say the least.
Coming from a Military family, Cole understands this flags true meaning. His dad was a marine, and he plans to be as well. It is not about the actual flag, it is about the symbolism. It is about the thousands upon thousands of people who died for the rights that this country lives by. This kid didn’t save any lives by doing this. The flag touching the ground didn’t physically hurt anyone. However, this small act is the least someone can do to show respect to the men and women who gave the ultimate sacrifice for us to live freely.
This was originally a nice memorial day story, that was completely turned around by the people in this country who take their living situation for granted. That might be the worst part of this story. On Memorial Day, a holiday in which most of us spending “celebrating” by having cookouts and fires, while others grieve the losses of their loved ones. This is a day in which we honor those who gave their lives for us to live free. The fact that people are making jokes about our nations flag, on the day we pay our respects to those who fight for it is beyond ignorant.
Whether you are democrat or republican, conservative or liberal or anything in between. This is not a political belief. This is respecting an honoring the men and women who gave the ultimate sacrifice for you to be able to think, talk or tweet any way you want. It is a shame that this kid is getting bashed for what he called “his duty as an American citizen and future Marine.”
So here’s to Cole Dotson. Thank you for respecting your nations colors, as every American should. Thank you for teaching us a lesson that is bigger than any high school lecture. Thank you for being a true American.