We all are patriots | Letter

The singular “official” military protocol when the USA flag is present, during public performance of the national anthem, is that active military members must stand at attention and salute the flag if serving as honor guard.

There are no laws that require citizens to stand at attention, remove hats or place hands on hearts. Over time, these acknowledgments have evolved into customs and traditions.

The President has started yet another divisive controversy, pitting citizens against citizens. His tweet that people who kneel during the national anthem are not patriotic deepens an unhealthy division within our country. Tweeting that the NFL should require players to stand during the national anthem adds fuel to the fire.

Why is kneeling less patriotic than standing? Players taking a knee demonstrate their desire to improve our country by calling attention to discrimination. Who writes these patriotism rules anyway? Certainly not politicians or presidents.

Every day, citizens practice patriotism in unique and individual ways: treating each other with respect as equals; paying their taxes; being PTA members, teachers, volunteers, state legislators, or clergy members; or serving in the military. In other words, a patriot is anyone who loves this country and who works to make it better. Patriotic examples are as varied as our populace.

The President and his believers choose their patriotism. But violating a citizen’s right to free speech flies in the face of patriotism.

Please stop this needless divisiveness over who is or who is not a patriot. We all are.

Charlotte Rempfer

North Bend

More in Letters to the Editor

Perspective on cycling support on the Eastside | Letter

Perspective on cycling support on the Eastside Imagine for a minute the… Continue reading

An appreciated public gesture | Letter

This is in response to “Art planned for Overlake Village to celebrate… Continue reading

Community weighs in on the election | Letter to the editor

Birney: a true community builder I first met Angela Birney in 2013,… Continue reading

Vote to re-elect Siri Bliesner | Letter

I am so grateful to have Siri Bliesner representing our children and… Continue reading

Birney walks the talk | Letter

Angela Birney is the best choice for Redmond mayor. I spent 11… Continue reading

Birney’s vision for community | Letter

Why do residents and community leaders across our region endorse Angela Birney… Continue reading

EvergreenHeatlh and the Great ShakeOut | Letter

Millions of people worldwide will practice how to drop, cover and hold… Continue reading

Fields is clear choice | Letter

Over the last several months, weeks, and days, I have been researching… Continue reading

Fields committed to Redmond | Letter

Thank you, Redmond Reporter for providing the Oct. 3 mayoral debate online… Continue reading

Fields puts people first | Letter

Redmond has a strong mayor system of government, which gives the choice… Continue reading

Vote for Bliesner | Letter

I am writing in support of Siri Bliesner for Position 5 on… Continue reading

Adopt, don’t shop | Letter

As two 16-year-old volunteers with Seattle Humane (SH), animal welfare has always… Continue reading