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I was deeply saddened by the June 8 political cartoon that was chosen by the FLS editorial staff regarding the sexual misconduct or possible crimes on the part of some Marines.
My complaint is not because the issue of sexual misconduct was raised; it is that the cartoon used the theme of the heroic raising of the U.S. flag by Marines on Iwo Jima to condemn these recent wrongful actions.
Some things are sacred, and the raising of the flag
It was not only the Marines who finally raised the flag who deserve our unwavering respect, but the countless Marines who died or were wounded to allow the flag to be raised and who eventually defeated the enemy.
The Marines who raised the flag have become honorably remembered in photograph, sculpture, book, film, and in the very shape of the Marine Corps Museum in Quantico.
I can only guess that the cartoonist was trying to imply that these recent wrongful actions insult the memory of those who raised the flag, but the theme's representation is distasteful and insulting to the memory of those who saved our country from destruction.
The cartoonist should have used more discretion in selecting the theme, and the FLS should have used more discretion in using it.
Veterans of the Second World War are dying daily, and unfortunately so are the memories and appreciation of what they did for us.
Any Marines today who have violated that memory and respect for it will be punished. But the extraordinary achievements of those Marines who served our country and the symbols of our undying gratitude for what they did should never be used to tarnish their heroic reputation.
Harvey S. Gold