It’s been a really long time since I added to this particular series of articles. In case you have forgotten my previous articles, please check out Grow The F*ck Up, Grow The F*ck Up: The UCLA Remix, and Grow The F*ck Up: The Professor Probation Alternative.
Usually these articles take a swipe at childish liberals who need to learn to play nice with people they don’t agree with, but today, as the title says, we are shuffling things up a bit.
Michelle Manhart, an Air Force veteran, was handcuffed and led away from protesters at Valdosta State University in Georgia.
Here’s the thing, I totally understand Manhart’s anger. I’ve seen protesters exhibit similar disrespect to the flag, but that doesn’t change the fact that she was in the wrong.
The protesters were a bunch of idiots, clearly. I mean they made comments like “You enslaved our people… you put us in this white supremacist place and you are stealing our flag now,” which just goes to show that Valdosta State may not have a history or legal department that’s even close to coherent if the students actually think Marnhart is somehow responsible for the enslavement of their ancestors, but stupidity of message doesn’t mean they have less right to that message or to their property.
If this organization had stolen the flag off her house and proceeded to stomp on it, she would have been well within her rights to take it back, but as it stands…she committed a theft.
Marnhart makes the comment at one point that the flag “belongs to the entire United States” which is simply not true. Yes, the concept and meaning of the flag belongs to everyone and, yes, the freedom that the flag represents belongs to everyone, but that particular flag did not belong to everyone and it certainly didn’t belong to her.
Marnhart could have stood there arguring with the protesters all she wanted and I would have supported her, but the moment she stole that flag she was in the wrong and her defense of her actions has put her further and further into the wrong.
During her interview on The Kelly File on April 20th Marnhart talked about how her reason for taking the flag was that she had fought for freedom. On twitter I commented that there was a “horrific irony” in listening to someone talk about how they fought for freedom and then turning around to use that as justification for trying to restrict freedom.
It would be nice if everyone respected the flag as much as Marnhart clearly does (and myself as well) and if everyone followed the flag code, but the protesters, as despicable as their actions were, were within their right to express their problems with America in the way that they did.
That’s why Michelle, respectfully, you need to grow the fuck up. Taking the flag didn’t fix the problem, it only inflamed it. You aren’t going to change their mind and theft of their property isn’t justified by the fact that you feel the flag should be treated more respectfully or the fact that you served in the Air Force.
Thank you for your service, but it’s painful to hear you say that you fought to defend a flag and freedom, when you so clearly don’t understand what freedom means.
“I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.”