Regarding kneeling during the National Anthem [Keeping Kaepernick in the headlines, Sept. 14]: The American flag and the National Anthem don’t represent perfection in our society—that’s an impossibility—only the agreed-upon desire that we all want to have that perfection. That’s our standard to try to adhere to. There is no one against this, not in his or her right mind, anyway. There’s a distinction here that’s being missed, methinks.
The Constitution, written by American founders in the mid- 1700s, is a noble document. Who will deny this? It’s a paradigm for self-governance. It is our political standard that we use as our guide, and an admirable one. As a country we will always be working on holding to this. I wish all humans were perfect, including politicians we elect, and those we assign to serve and protect.
But disrespecting the ideal of our society until anyone feels that the correct amount of perfection has been achieved seems like taking a false noble and racially divisive stand—well-intentioned, but misplaced, anger. Who will say when that perfection has arrived? Who? Do we decide for ourselves? How capricious, no? What exactly is being disrespected here? The lack of a utopian society right now? The Constitution itself? The two-party system? The state governments? The local government where one lives? Exactly which?
Resenting America’s societal imperfections because it’s not perfect right now is like resenting being human. This shared common desire is above any racial or political platforms—unless we allow ourselves to believe otherwise. It’s something we all want. Are the ideals of our society, borne by the Constitution, suddenly bad ones?
The irony of course is that it is one’s inalienable right as an American to not only disrespect, but also to misconstrue. One must admit: there’s rich irony here. We, and our children, and our children’s children, will always be working on perfecting society. That’s part-and-parcel of what democracy is about. It’s neverending. This anger-fueled separatist perspective will only serve to further separate Americans along racial lines. Que lastima (how sad), as people say here in heavily Hispanic San Diego. I love the expression, “Don’t burn the flag, wash it.” Misguided indignation aside, this ain’t washing.
Stephen Keyes, Encinitas
CARS GO BOOM
I keep reading these disparaging letters about Edwin “Contrary” Decker in CityBeat’s “Letters to the Editor” section. I never figured why so many people write adversarial letters to a person who is an op-ed writer, not a journalist.
However, I now have a reason to complain.
Ed: Cars explode all the time, everyday [Six things TV producers must stop doing immediately!” Aug. 24.] How can you doubt this? Just because of a Pinto’s unfortunate placement of it’s fuel hold does not mean other vehicles cannot blow up with Hollywood gusto, like, on a regular basis, almost hourly.
Almost every time I look out my window in downtown's East Village neighborhood, I clearly witness a car explosion. Why are you, Ed “Teddy Bear” Decker, helping to conspire to hide this from the greater public at large?
Also, as my mother used to tell me, the word “duh” is not actually a real word. Does Edwin The Harmless know this? Does he even utilize an editor for his purpose of criticizing what we all hold dear and true in our hearts?
I don’t think so, either. Cars explode daily, Ed. I’ve seen it, man! I may as well live on a Die Hard scene set I’ve seen that so many times it’s ridiculous.
Benny A. McFadden, San Diego
WE WANT FEEDBACK
Did you read a story in San Diego CityBeat that made you so mad your appendix burst, or caused you to laugh so hard you lost a tooth? If something inspires you to send us your two cents we welcome all letters that respond to news stories, opinion pieces or reviews that have run in these pages. We don’t accept unsolicited oped letters. Email letters to editor Ron Donoho at rond@ sdcitybeat.com, or mail to 3047 University Ave., Suite 202, San Diego, CA 92104. For letters to be considered for publication you must include your first and last name and the part of town where you reside.