Why aren’t flags flown at half-staff every day?

April 19, 2007 | By | 55 Replies More

President Bush has ordered flags to be flown at half-staff in honor of the 33 people killed this week at Virginia Tech.  So, here’s my question:  why hasn’t he ordered flags to be flown at half-staff every day, in honor of the U.S. (and coalition) soldiers who die every day in Iraq?


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About the Author ()

Grumpypilgrim is a writer and management consultant living in Madison, WI. He has several scientific degrees, including a recent master’s degree from MIT. He has also held several professional career positions, none of which has been in a field in which he ever took a university course. Grumps is an avid cyclist and, for many years now, has traveled more annual miles by bicycle than by car…and he wishes more people (for the health of both themselves and our planet) would do the same. Grumps is an enthusiastic advocate of life-long learning, healthy living and political awareness. He is single, and provides a loving home for abused and abandoned bicycles. Grumpy’s email: grumpypilgrim(AT)@gmail(DOT).com [Erich’s note: Grumpy asked that his email be encrypted this way to deter spam. If you want to write to him, drop out the parentheticals in the above address].

Comments (55)

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  1. Erich Vieth says:

    . . . and back to the original topic of this post . . . here's a U.S. army sgt who is questioning why flags were lowered for the VT students, but not for the deaths of U.S. soldiers. http://thinkprogress.org/2007/04/23/wilt-troops/

  2. Edgar Montrose says:

    "Between 1985 and 2005 161 cops had been shot, 68 of them mistakenly by coworkers or happened to have an accident with their own weapon."

    Once again, quoting statistics is a mistake, because they work against you. This spans 21 years, with 9500 police officers covering a city of 3.5 million people, some parts of which have among the highest violent crime rates in the USA. These officers have my deepest respect, and under the circumstances I'd say that this record is remarkable.

    However, I did say that I would acknowledge your statement, "… the police in Los Angeles does not only have to fear the bullets of criminals, but they nearly as often hurt themselves accidently with their own guns or get hurt by their colleagues." Assuming that the article cited is truthful, I acknowledge that your statement is accurate.

  3. Ben says:

    Conclusion: Rational thinkers such as the the ones posting here (I will go ahead and include myself) have come to the agreement that atheism is more rational than Christianity. However, the same rational thinkers, do not see eye to eye on all issues. Each issue (gun control for example) seems to require special attention, and some of us end up on different sides of the spectrum on certain issues. I propose that an issue like whether to (ban) put strict controls on guns may actually be a *regional* debate. I think that certain cities and/or states will begin to crack down on guns, while others are comfortable with the status quo. In the county where I live, immigration, overpopulation, crime, shootings, and general unrest lead me to believe that gun control is indeed necessary. I now realize that some states (like Wisconsin?), are not yet overcrowded, crime, gang, drug, gun, payday lending, and alcohol infested, yet. The need for stricter gun laws may be less evident or even non-existent in these locales.

  4. Erika Price says:

    Good thinking, Ben! One of the main issues in the debate on gun control has to do with the question of whether free floating guns do actually contribute to crime. But region and culture definitely determine much of the answer to that question. In such a case, a person can say that guns increase danger, another can assert their relative innocuousness, and both can have it right.

  5. Ben says:

    A wise man once said…

    "Accordingly, the question remains: if Iraq can be “preempted” from acquiring and using WMDs, why shouldn’t Americans be “preempted” from acquiring and using them?"


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