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Flags Shouldn’t be Use like a Blue Light Special

usa flagHas anyone else noticed this? Its so rampant I think we are completely desensitived or programmed. Anyway see my letter to my local paper. If you agree (or disagree for that matter) let me and others know. Thanks.

Dear Editor,

The March 7 paper contained a picture of the huge four American flags at a local car dealership. This was not an ad per se, just a picture. As a Sango resident for the past 5 years, I have seen the rapid growth of this area slowly creeping out to the county. The most visible symbol of this growth, are these four flags, which are visible for miles around, even at night with the flags lit by spotlights.

Every weekend, the flags are flown slightly different. Your picture shows all four waving in the wind; last weekend they had just three flying; the weekend before that all four were flying but one was at half mast. In the past, I’ve noticed at times the US flag is swapped out for a other flags.

These flags are not being used to show patriotism, national pride, or celebrating freedom; they are being used as an obvious cheap ad gimmick. How can society get upset about flag burning, but we seem okay to let companies use it to peddle their goods? I’ve seen other businesses even advertise tag lines like “Home of the Largest United States Flag in Kentucky ”. How can the citizen’s which just a few years ago were upset about the tattered flags on the 101st parkway not be outraged by this. I would rather see a small, discretely placed, tattered flag waving out of respect to veterans, than four enormous, prominently lit US flags waving 300 feet in the sky waving as a cheap billboard for a business.

Blayne Clements
Blayne Clements
I am a 30 something graduate from Austin Peay State University, where I graduated in 1997 with two majors (Accounting and Finance). I am a very happily married man, with one beautiful daughter. I enjoy a professional life of public service and a personal life of travel, reading, music, and always trying to learn from others.


  1. Great Letter Blayne. Lets not forget the furor over the deep fried flags. My personal flag pet peeves are flags on vehicles, and flags worn as clothing (belt buckles, bandana’s, and so on)….

    You should write more frequently!

  2. i agree with you Blayne we get upset over burning the flag but we are ok with Sisk Auto Mall boasting about their largest flag in Western Ky or Kennedy law firm flying theirs or even better yet we are ok with a business (right outside Gate 4 )not putting theirs at half mast (until about 2 days after the fact) when Former President Ford passrd away last yr.I even have to admit I had to tell the place where I work hey dummy put our flag at half mast.
    I hope to see more of your writting in the near future

  3. A reader responded to my letter in the Tuesday edition March 13, 2007 of the Chronicle as follows:
    “In response to: “Flag shouldn’t be used for sales gimmick.” [Letters, March 10]
    I was appalled when reading the letter that was sent in regard to the flags that the car dealership has flying above its business. I, by all means, disagree with the author of this opinion letter.
    I am sure that when these flag poles were installed, the owner of this business had no intention of putting these flags up for “business purposes.” I mean, who is going to drive down the road and think, “I think I will go buy a [car there] because the owner of this business is patriotic”? People buy what they want. They aren’t going to base their decision on four flags being flown. Those flags are there for a reason, yes, but that reason being to support America and its troops. Yes, there may be different flags being flown every now and then, but there is always an American flag flying. Do you see a car flag flying among the American flags? If there were, then I would say that those flag poles are there for a “sales gimmick.” I believe that they only beautify the Sango community, and I enjoy seeing them every day. As for griping about the lights shining in their window, it was obvious that some type of business was going to be located there sooner or later; the location is only on of the busiest roads in Clarksville. Maybe people should look over the area before buying a house next time.”
    Clarksville 37040

  4. Businesses do everything for one reason…to make money. Using the writer’s logic, one would think that offering military discounts at local restaurant’s is patriotic not a sales gimmick; having raffles for a free car where the raffle is only open to military and their dependents is supporting our troops not a advertising strategy; and flying American flags trhat are bigger than the sign for the business has nothing to do with selling products but just a show of support.

    The writer also misquotes me (not sure why the editor let this go by her), by saying I complained that ‘the lights shining in their window’ which I did not say.

    Please check out the comments on the Chronicle’s website about this to see what other people are saying.

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