Sentimental value of a flag

Over the 22 years I lived in America, I have seen a drastic change in the attitude towards the stars and stripes. What was perceived by many as the American flag is now viewed as the Federal flag, evoking distinctly mixed feeling.

The old Gadsden flag is currently re-gaining favor, mainly because it is perceived as the flag of the people instead of the flag of the government. Most people have as little liking for their state governments as for the feds, but the local rulers are perceived as more controllable in the long run.

While I view the United States as the best country in the world in total, we are now quite inferior to many others in personal freedoms, tax laws and other aspects. I wouldn’t trade better gun laws of the US for better drug laws of Belgium, but I admit that they are better off in that respect. Likewise, even in Germany (with its reputation for gruffness), customs and airport staff were significantly less rude than INS and TSA. In many ways, life in America is better than it has ever been. In others, it’s starting to resemble the USSR. That development is almost entirely based on the federal impositions on the population. It’s easy to flee New Jersey for Pennsylvania, it’s a bit harder to get away from the national jurisdiction. IRS, for example, tries to pursue even the people who aren’t Americans anymore.

Until about 2001, I would invite friends from Russia and Europe to visit because I wanted to share my wonderful new homeland. Now I invite them with advance apologies for the indignities they are likely to endure en route from the US government agents. Hopefully, we will all be able to be proud of America again someday soon.

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12 Responses to Sentimental value of a flag

  1. Lyle says:

    Hear, hear!

    (BTW: I think you meant; “flee” and not “feel” NJ for PA)

  2. theirritablearchitect says:

    A natural born citizen weeps, because I know how correct you are about our country, and the imposition of the police state on our lives.

  3. Eric Oppen says:

    To my shame, I have to say that you have a lot of good points. I would say that a lot of the trouble is caused by the Drug War and the post-9/11 hysteria, but the tax nonsense has been going on for quite some time.

  4. Houston says:

    Makes me very mad…and very sad at the same time, because what you speak is true.
    I’m afraid the the words of Thomas Jefferson will need to be proved true once again…
    “Every so often the Tree of Liberty must be watered with the blood of Patriots and Tyrants”
    Sad but true.

  5. The Inconvenience says:

    Hear Hear! Or, uh, well, what Lyle said.

  6. David says:

    Very poignant post Oleg.

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  8. Roy Tippens says:


    I think the advance apologies that you are offering for the INS & TSA is a bit misplaced. Like many government agencies in this country, it’s not so much the agencies whom are the rude, loud uncaring idiots; it’s the employee wearing the badge. I have noticed throughout some personal experiences. Most of the people whom wear these badges, abuse the power in which they think they have. My guess is, they were the kids who went through their childhood being bullied, picked on and made fun of. They are the ones who wish they were at home sitting on the couch drinking coke & playing on their X-box, but instead have to screen you to put you on a plane.
    I was born in this country, and have spent 41 years living here, and I will be the first one to admit, this is one of the laziest, sloppiest, rudest, abusive countries I have ever been in. Americans are only out for themselves, and piss on everyone else.
    I spent 6 years in the United States Military defending this flag, and I’m ashamed to say this is my home. It’s not the Government who has made this country as heartless as it is. It’s the people who live in it. I’m not saying EVERYONE is like this, but I can promise you, over 50% of the people who live here as US citizens, could care less about the Vet who fought for the freedom we have, that is living homeless & cold under a bridge somewhere.
    I know this is way off the subject of what your blog was about. But I feel what I’ve said here is a bit of the core to the problem of which you speak.

  9. Vanni says:

    That commute would KILL me. I hate diivrng. I mean I really, really hate it. If I could get rid of my car altogether, I’d be a happy girl. The longest commute I’ve ever had was 30 minutes one way, and that felt like an eternity. I usually listened to audiobooks or public radio (oh my, I think I’ve just outed myself as a huge geek). I just couldn’t deal with hearing the same three songs over and over on the radio.

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