Tag Archives: American flag

Students defy school restrictions on free speech

Defiance: Students in two high schools in Virginia and Texas this week pushed back against school officials who punished them for wearing flag emblems the school disapproved of, specifically the American and Confederate flags.

In the case of the American flag, the student was threatened with suspension because he was wearing a shirt with the flag on it and the school insists shirts must be solid. When he and his family questioned the suspension, the school backed off.

In the case of the Confederate flag, it appears the students had organized a protest against the school’s ban of that symbol.

“This is nothing about racism. This is about where we come from, what our ancestors did and what everybody here’s family has fought for, the right to do what we want,” Christiansburg High senior Andrew Love said.

Rules at Christiansburg High School and three other county schools do not allow students to display the Confederate flag because it’s considered offensive. Last month students were told to remove Confederate flag bumper stickers from their cars.

The issue here has nothing to do with racism. It has to do with free speech. The school has no business telling anyone what they can say or cannot say, even if that statement is contained in their clothes. That the school had the nerve to demand that the students remove bumper stickers on their cars is beyond outrageous and illustrates that this has nothing to do with maintaining discipline in the school The administrators want to stamp out opinions they disagree with.

Kudos to the students for fighting back. We need more courage like this.

Yesterday police in Wisconsin celebrated Pearl Harbor Day by issuing tickets to people waving the American flag.

Yesterday police in Wisconsin celebrated Pearl Harbor Day by issuing tickets to people waving the American flag.

Video below the fold. Stick around to the end. As the man says, “The cops can’t scare us off, can they?”
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What is the current state of the six American flags planted on the Moon by Apollo astronauts? One NASA engineer takes a look.

What is the current state of the six American flags planted on the Moon by Apollo astronauts? One NASA engineer takes a look.

James Fincannon has been an important contributor here at Behind the Black, sending me some interesting tips from time to time that have resulted in some good posts, such as this one about caves on the Moon.

A man in Georgia was ticketed and threatened with jail after he refused to remove an American flag that’s been flying outside his business for more than thirty years.

We’re here to help you: A man in Georgia was ticketed and threatened with jail after he refused to remove an American flag that’s been flying outside his business for more than thirty years.

A new study finds that just looking at the American flag makes one more prone to support the Republican Party

A new study finds that just looking at the American flag makes one more prone to support the Republican party.

I have doubts about these results. Nonetheless, the research does sort of confirm the earlier study from Harvard that suggested that patriotism and celebrating the Fourth of July tended to make people favor the Republican party over the Democratic party. In both cases, these results really tell us a great deal about the perception people have of both parties. It is not hard for people to imagine modern Democrats as almost being hostile to America and its founding principles.

A flag in the dust

Bumped: I posted this essay last July 20th on the anniversary of the Apollo 11 landing on the moon. I think it is worth rereading again, even as the shuttle is about to return to Earth for the last time.

Today, July 20th, is the anniversary of the Apollo 11 landing on the Moon, the first time ever that a human being arrived on another planet. Americans love to celebrate this event, as it symbolizes one of the finest moments in our history, when we set out to achieve something truly great and noble and succeeded far better than we could have imagined. Not only did we get to the Moon as promised, over the next three and a half years we sent another five missions, each with increasingly sophisticated equipment, each sent to explore some increasingly alien terrain. Forty-plus years later, no one has come close to matching this achievement, a fact that emphasizes how difficult it was for the United States to accomplish it.

There is one small but very important detail about the Apollo 11 mission, however, that most Americans are unaware of. In mounting the American flag, the astronauts found the lunar surface much harder than expected. They had a great deal of trouble getting the flagpole into the ground. As Andrew Chaikin wrote in his book, A Man on the Moon, “For a moment it seemed the flag would fall over in front of a worldwide audience, but at last the men managed to steady it.” Then Armstrong took what has become one of the world’s iconic images, that of Buzz Aldrin standing on the lunar surface saluting the flag of the United States of America.

Aldrin saluting the flag

What people don’t know, however, is that when Armstrong and Aldrin blasted off from the lunar surface, the blast wave from the Lunar Module’s rocket knocked the flag over. As Chaikin also wrote, “Outside, a spray of gold foil and debris from the descent stage flew away in all directions. The flag toppled to the dust.”

Thus, for the last four decades this American flag, shown so proudly unfurled on the surface of the Moon, has actually been lying unceremoniously on the ground, in the lunar dust.

It might actually be possible to see this, though the photos at this time remain unclear and quite blurry.
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