One day it was pointed out to me by a friend in the military that those in the military do not take an oath to the state, or really even to the President, but rather first and foremost an oath to defend the constitution.
How does this relate to flag burning? There have been many attacks on the constitution. Most of them have been domestic in origin. One of the latest attacks has been the suggestion by President-Elect Donald Trump that those who burn the American flag should be imprisoned or have their citizenship revoked.
However, should we even think about supporting this mentality? No. Why not? While the most freedom can be obtained from a stateless society. The constitution at least keeps the government in check, if followed. It protects, among other things, the freedom to burn the flag, so long as you are not destroying someone else’s property.
If anything, we should be protecting those who burn the flag, and opposing those who want to violate the constitution. To that effect, I will be making an oath: a citizen’s oath. Taking the oath from the military as a base, and thinking about the nature of patriotism vs nationalism, here is the following “Citizen’s oath” that I am taking:
I, ______, do solemnly swear to place my friends, my family, and my community, above the needs and wants of the state and furthermore that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic.
Of course no citizen should be required to take such an oath, simply for being a citizen, as that itself would be a violation of the first amendment. But it is something to reasonably consider.