In a letter published July 4, "Take good care of that flag," Don Newell, a retired career Air Force pilot, wrote that he hoped whoever stole his flag from his front porch treats it as well as he did. I hope so, too.
Like Newell, I served in the Air Force. As a Vietnam veteran, I saluted the flag as he did and paid my respects as appropriate during my time serving and continue to do so today.
Another letter writer, Paul Knight, a Marine veteran who served in Vietnam, wrote that July 4 would be better celebrated "by honoring veterans" than blowing stuff up. He writes that if you want to blow stuff up, then run down to the local recruiter and enlist in the military and you can blow stuff up every day for the next several years. I couldn't agree more.
The rockets' red glare and the bombs bursting in air are real to many vets and, for many of them, reliving it every July 4 isn't much of a celebration.
Between stealing flags and inconsiderate use of fireworks risking fires, annoying the neighbors and scaring the daylights out of everyone's pets, the whole reason for the holiday is lost.
I salute both of these men and add my voice to their expressed sentiments.