Saturday, June 27, 2015

What Was That First Line Again?

So is this okay now?
It has been an interesting week to say the least. Actually, it has been an interesting couple of weeks. I glossed over this topic a little in my post yesterday but let's take the time now to dive a little deeper. 

Yesterday the Supreme Court issued a ruling to legalized same sex marriage throughout the United States.  While I don’t have a particularly strong feeling one way or the other, I was intrigued by the first sentence of the ruling which reads, “The Constitution promises liberty to all within its reach, a liberty that includes certain specific rights that allow persons, within a lawful realm, to define and express their identity.” It was interesting because it summed up another debate that has been happening across the United States.

This same line could be applied to those who see the stars and bars as a means of self-expression. While the recent history, and interpretation of history prior to the modern era, of that flag have tainted the original perspective, there are some that still hold onto that symbol not for the suppression that it has come to represent but because of the ideal of state’s rights that it stood for. In that vein, there is no denying that slavery played a role in dividing the nation but rights are what lead the country to war.

We have to remember that at that time most were indifferent to the institution of slavery both in the north and the south. However, when the federal government stripped away the rights of the states, that is what the people in the south rallied around. Hence the terms still used to this day “The War of Northern Aggression” and “The Battle for Southern Independence”. State’s rights is why the stars and bars have remained in South Carolina as the state flag flying above the capital.

But, like many things these days, the flag offends people so it must be hidden away and never spoken of again. Many of those same people proudly displayed a bright flag of their own today to support the rights of people. Again, while I don’t care one way or another, I am sure there are many people that are offended by that display of pride. Where is the outcry to remove those flags? Shouldn’t the same rules apply to all people and to all flags?

What it all comes down to is that you can’t have it both ways. You either support the rights of individuals to express themselves and live the lives they want to lead or you want to strip away the rights from people. Frankly, I would like to be left alone. Let me live my life, express myself openly, and enjoy my rights. The government shouldn’t be telling people or states what to do, who to marry, what we can own, what we can display, what we can and can’t say, and overall how we should live our lives. Enjoy your rights and remember this… just say no to big government!