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Tarnishing the Jewel: Flag needs better care and respect

La Jolla resident Beth Gaenzle called the condition of the flag at Kellogg Park in La Jolla Shores "an embarrassment."
La Jolla resident Beth Gaenzle called the condition of the flag at Kellogg Park in La Jolla Shores “an embarrassment.” She sent this photo Jan. 5.
(Courtesy of Beth Gaenzle)

The condition of the American flag at Kellogg Park in La Jolla Shores caused concern for La Jolla resident Beth Gaenzle.

“My husband and I both come from military families. ... The flag is an important symbol to us,” she wrote to the La Jolla Light last week, with a photo showing a torn Old Glory. “It is really sad to see this fly over the beautiful park.”

“Federal law [U.S. Code, Title 4] says ‘the flag should never be fastened, displayed, used or stored in such a manner as to permit it to be easily torn, soiled or damaged in any way,’” she wrote, and “‘the flag, when it is in such condition that it is no longer a fitting emblem for display, should be destroyed in a dignified way, preferably by burning.’”

She added that “it is up all night and is not illuminated” [the code says the flag should be displayed only from sunrise to sunset, or if flown 24 hours a day, be properly illuminated at night].

“We live in a patriotic military community and this is an embarrassment that should be addressed,” Gaenzle wrote.

If you see something around La Jolla that you think needs some work, send photos for our Tarnishing the Jewel feature to robert.vardon@lajollalight.com. Or if you find something worthy of kudos, send photos of that for our sister feature, Polishing the Jewel.