Let's clear some things up so that you can understand “our” perspective as conscientious objectors without you having a shadow of a doubt as to where we stand. Why would I, as a black man, pledge allegiance to a flag that represents a country and the government that won't pledge allegiance to me?
The United States Flag represents a government and country that celebrates the terrorist men who have murdered, raped, kidnapped, exploited, brutalized, and enslaved people of color from the indigenous Americans to the African prisoners that were transported to this continent for slave labor. Anytime that your government creates, supports, and promotes holidays and celebrations of slave owners, murderers, and terrorists of black and Indigenous people, how the fuck could you expect any black person to pledge allegiance to that flag or to that government? If a government has been exposed for being infiltrated and saturated with white nationalists, KKK members, and white supremacist in all branches in offices across the entire expanse of government reach, from the judicial system and the correctional system, to the education system and the medical system, how could you reasonably expect any black person to pledged his Allegiance to that flag that represents government agencies that so easily allow these type of people to operate as their representatives and agents? You may have been personally conditioned and trained into believing that that flag represents freedom and liberty but what it really represents is freedom and liberty for a specific race and a particular class of people which unfortunately does not include black people.
One has to be extremely brainwashed and indoctrinated to invest so much emotional attachment and to put so much emotional value in a piece of cloth or a symbol rather than having that same emotional attachment and placing that same amount of value in another human life even if that person doesn't look like you. There is no practical or morally beneficial value in materialism and blind patriotism. There is, however, danger and an abundant potential for hatred and divisiveness when people become so obsessed and so emotionally attached too materialistic symbols that clearly represent very divisive and negative ideas for certain people.
The US flag is not, nor has it ever been a universal symbol for justice, freedom, liberty, and equality for all of the citizens of this country. And until it does I can guarantee you that people like me will continue to protest and reject allegiance to the flag. It is our constitutional right and Duty to reject such fascists and tyrannical propaganda. You might conclude that this particular position makes me and people like me less American and this may be true. But one has to truly understand what it means to be American for that statement and that idea to hold any negative connotations towards my character and the value of my human being. For many of us, as we perceive it, being American often means being a racist, impressive, tyrannical, terroristic, and engaging and systematic Injustice. So if that is a true representation of what America is then why would anyone want to be American?
As someone who was born in the US, born in the Nation's Capital, whose parents and grandparents were born here and served in the military, and as someone who continues to diligently serve many communities within our capital city, I actually possess a tremendous abundance of love, respect, and pride for many of the people that live here as well as many of the accomplishments that have been made over the centuries. Let it be understood that there is a significant and clear difference between hatred for a countries tyrannical, oppressive, misogynistic, racist, and corrupt government and hatred for its country and countrymen. I do not hate my country e my fellow nor do I hat countrymen and women. I hate the wicked, unjust, and bigoted system that operates withinin our branches and halls of governance. And this is why we kneel...