“TREAT OLD GLORY WITH DIGNITY AND RESPECT DESERVED”
In my 85 years I have seen the American Flag honored and in some cases, abused. But never more so than right here in American Samoa these past years.
Each and every time the President or the Governor has ordered the flags to half- mast it is a shameful fiasco, full mast at ASTCA, 1/2 mast at ASPA, full mast at the Stadium, 1/2 mast at the dock and on and on.
I’ve called the Governor's office many times asking why this is going on. Their attitude is always "What's the big deal?" Their answer is "Oh they must have forgot" or "they didn't get the memo" and that is simply not acceptable.
When Justice Ginsberg passed away the flag was 1/2 mast and then returned to full mast. A week later we passed the dock and the flag was still at 1/2 mast. Again, I called, and the answer was "Oh they must have forgot." One afternoon we drove past the Health Clinic in Tafuna and the flag was flying high but upside down. I went into the Clinic yelling "Why is the flag upside down? " and they rushed out to re-do it. These are a few examples of the way our flag is treated.
Here is a suggestion... The Governor takes all of his Directors and Office staff to the Reserve Center and have them walk down the main hallway and look at all those photographs on the wall of young Samoans who paid the ultimate price for that flag and what it stands for.
Our new U.S. President may give American Samoa to China as a goodwill gesture, then none of this will matter but for now, I am asking this new Administration to treat OLD GLORY with the dignity and respect she deserves.