DENVER – The “credentials” issued by the Democratic National Convention for fans of Sen. Barack Obama to attend his nomination-acceptance speech next week at Denver’s football stadium are raising questions because they apparently have the U.S. flag flying upside down – an international signal of distress.
KUSA-TV in Denver reported its viewers have raised the issue, and online, a participant in a Gateway Pundit forum said, “That’s an upside-down flag. It may not be intentional, but there it is.”
The television station said viewers see the blue field and stars in the lower left corner, even though published flag etiquette states the stars should be displayed – always – in the upper left corner.
Obama spokesman Matt Chandler told the station the flag isn’t upside down; it was just stylized to blend the stars on Obama’s shirt with the flag.
“The DNCC community credentials incorporate patriotic design elements,” said Natalie Wyeth of the DNCC in a statement to the station. “They do not depict an actual American flag. The DNCC has full and complete respect for the flag and all rules of display.”
Such affirmations, however, were lost on some of those commenting on the issue.
“Dude can’t stop disrespecting this Country!!!” wrote a contributor to the station’s forum page.
Said another, “It’s an upside down American flag. Which has always had a very specific meaning. Declaring it is anything else is a lie. Deflecting attention from it is a typical political maneuver. Falling for it is more proof of the dumbing down of the American voter.”
It isn’t the first time issues over such protocol have been raised by critics of Obama. He was photographed with Gov. Bill Richardson, Sen. Hillary Clinton and Ruth Harkin at a steak fry for Iowa Sen. Tom Harkin during the playing of the national anthem. Richardson, Clinton and Harkin placed their hands over their hearts, but Obama is standing casually with his fingers laced in front of him.
He also previously said he doesn’t wear an American flag lapel pin because it has become a substitute for “true patriotism.”
To an Iowa television station, the Illinois senator explained he stopped wearing a flag pin following the 9/11 attacks.
“I decided I won’t wear that pin on my chest,” he told the station. “Instead, I’m going to try to tell the American people what I believe will make this country great.”