I love the man who loves his God,
His country and his fellow-man,
No matter what his state or birth,
No matter what his creed or clan;
And in my very inmost heart,
In spite of all that fates decree,
I love him ever more and more,
The more he loves his liberty.
I love the flags, the fallen flags,
Of every land of all the world
By men upreared in freedom's cause,
But which oppression's hands have furled.
Their memory, like a sweet incense,
A fragrance sheds, all hearts to thrill,
And keeps aglow the lingering spark
Of liberty remaining still.
And by my faith in living God,
I still maintain that free consent
Of subjects is the only grant
Entailing right of Government.
That conquest only paves the way
For brigands and despotic might,
Which in the sight of Holy God
Was never, nor can e'er be right.
I love the glorious stars and stripes,
My great fore-father's flag and mine;
It gives me joy to see it wave
Where'er it floats o'er Freedom's shrine,
But if profaned by traitor hands,
To subjugate on foreign shore
A nation struggling to be free,
If I were there, -- 'twere mine no more.
Nor would I follow in its wake,
Nor treat with those who thus offend,
For all who dare that flag pervert,
Deserve the death which has no end.
And rather than that I should aid
In such unjust, unholy shame,
I'd suffer this warm heart of mine
Torn from my breast and cast in flame.
But if there be on this wide earth
A people bowed by galling yoke
Of tyrant, Emperor, King, or Czar,
Who would be free, and should invoke
"Old Glory's" shielding strength and might,
Before God I'd bid it fly
And with it there myself would go,
To make them free, or 'neath it die.
You see, this is the difficult thing we face -- now, today, in the near future. "For all who dare that flag pervert." The thing is, the people who are even now laying claim to more of our liberty and property will send men to enforce their will. And when they do, they will be flying this flag:
It happens that this is our flag, too. Who then is entitled to claim it? Whose vision shall, in the end, this flag represent? The Founders? Or the collectivists who have risen to power determined to kill off once and for all their Republic? Whose flag is it?
I know this. If it is still to be ours, we must fight for it. We must fight for the restoration of what the Founders meant by it. We must, and will, fight for that "rag on a pole," and for all the Founders' meant by it and all the additional meaning added to it by generation after generation of bloody sacrifice sustaining the liberty it represents.
They will claim it. We must reclaim it. Make ready.