A Student of History

October 5, 2007

How to lose an election in the U.S.

Filed under: The world today — John Maass @ 6:03 am

“Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama says he doesn’t wear an American flag lapel pin because it has become a substitute for “true patriotism” since the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.”



  1. Your title may prove to be accurate, but I think that might be Obama’s point. Why should politicians have to wear a star-spangled lapel pin to be elected? It’s ridiculous, and it doesn’t prove one’s “patriotism” any more than does putting a bumper sticker on one’s car. Pithy slogans (“Freedom Isn’t Free!”) and flag pins do not a patriot make.

    Comment by Matt — October 5, 2007 @ 8:56 am | Reply

  2. In the end, the American public is not going to warm to a candidate who refuses to wear our flag, for whatever reason. He’s running for the presidency of the country, not an interest group.

    Comment by John Maass — October 5, 2007 @ 10:52 am | Reply

  3. I’m unclear about which “interest group” you’re referring to. Anti-war liberals? I suppose I’d place myself in that category, but I think it’s sad that we as a nation have reached a point where our politicians must wear a lapel pin to “prove” their “patriotism.” I think the fact that Obama is spending two years of his life to run for president indicates that he has an interest in improving our nation (my definition of a patriot, I suppose). It’s certainly fair to judge him on his qualifications or his stances on the issues–after all, that’s what politics is all about. But to judge him because he doesn’t wear an American flag the size of a fingernail on his lapel? That’s just silly.

    Again, you may be right about the American public. I sincerely hope you’re wrong, but I suppose we shall see in the coming months.

    Comment by Matt — October 5, 2007 @ 4:33 pm | Reply

  4. From Obama’s handlers…

    “We all revere the flag, but Senator Obama believes that being a patriot is about more than a symbol. It’s about fighting for our veterans when they get home and speaking honestly with the American people about this disastrous war.”

    Perhaps he should only “fight” for the veteran’s AFTER asking those who actually serve (or have served) what their take is on this “disastrous” war. And while he’s asking, he should also inquire about their feelings about the symbol that he so casually removed from his lapel.

    Comment by Murray — October 9, 2007 @ 3:33 pm | Reply

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