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Letter: Standing for Pledge a matter of respect

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Tucked on the bottom left of page A2 of the June 21 Daily Globe was an article titled, "School drops pledge rule." The article concerned the suspension of three junior high students at Dilworth-Glyndon-Felton Public School who refused to stand during the Pledge of Allegiance. A fourth student was suspended the next day for sitting during the Pledge in protest of the suspension of the other three. These students were, evidently, reinstated as the school board voted 5-2 to amend the Student Handbook requiring students to stand during the Pledge. This was done to avoid legal action by the American Civil Liberties Union.

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I know of no law of statute requiring people to stand during the Pledge of Allegiance or the National Anthem, but I know this. There are rules of etiquette that govern such proceedings. To stand with your right hand over your heart or hat in hand over your heart during the Pledge or National Anthem is proper etiquette. Most of all, it displays respect first and patriotism second.

To the students who smugly sit while the rest of their peers follow the proper etiquette of the pledge: You are not sitting due to yourselves or an outfit called the ACLU. You are sitting there because American veterans in some seven wars over the last 235 years have fought and served and died for your freedom.

This is where standing shows respect: Respect for the World War II vet who watched his buddy get blown in half during the Battle of the Bulge, or the Korean vet who was curled in a foxhole during a mortar and artillery barrage, or the young Navy corpsman in Vietnam lucky to be alive because he was wounded caring for comrades in a firefight. Respect for the young men and women serving in Afghanistan and Iraq going through some hell right now.

The Veterans Organizations have a saying, "All gave some, some gave all."

This sacrifice is the reason students can choose to sit during the Pledge of Allegiance. While you sit, think of American veterans. Their blood gives you the right to do so.

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