Symbol can’t die

I have temporary Summer employment at NIU’s Material & Distribution Center and was verbally assaulted by several NIU student co-workers!

The reason for the assault? I expressed my opinion about the flag burning issue. Their closed mind to the reasons for my opinion made me think that NIU needs to look closely at the idea of tolerance.

Maybe the faculty can brain-storm ways of teaching this concept. Even challenging students with new, different and diverse ideas within each of their department’s curriculum.

Bravo and kudos to the Illinois House of Representatives for its decision to put the Bill of Rights above the revered national symbol of our country!

I am a proud American with powerful feelings for our flag and all it symbolizes. But, I am also strong, tolerant and secure enough in my beliefs in the U.S. Constitution, that I can view flag burning and see it for what it is–free speech.

I believe in the great minds that crafted our Bill of Rights. That they too would view written, spoken and gestural expressions of opinion and protected privileges.

We, as Americans, need to become more tolerant. Our flag is just a piece of material, a symbol, but our Constitution is the fabric of this country!

In closing, I want to add I would be horrified, shocked and angered if anyone burned the Constitution itself. Yet after my emotions cooled, I would carry on with my life. Knowing just a piece of paper was destroyed. The ideas on the document, are what matter the most.

Daniel K. Twombly

NIU alumnus