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Jason M. Kaseman, Fargo, Published August 20 2012

Get it right about a half-staff flag

Friday, Aug. 17, I looked out the window at a Fargo fire station and the flag was flying high, as it should be.

But recently, I saw the same flag at half-staff because a deranged gunman murdered some people at a movie. A horrible, terrible tragedy – they died for no reason, through no fault of their own. Their friends and families must be grief-stricken at such a senseless, useless, unnecessary death. They were simply in the wrong place at the wrong time.

Today I see that seven American soldiers were killed in Afghanistan. They knew the risks, they knew they were going into harm’s way to protect this country, and they paid with their lives. If we’re going to lower the flag, it should be lowered for true heroes, not random people in the wrong place at the wrong time.

That doesn’t mean the Batman movie theater shooting wasn’t a horrible tragedy; it was. But it was not a reason to lower the flag.