dont tread

Don’t Tread on Me – The Gadsden Flag and it’s Meaning

Don’t Tread on Me is a very strong statement in the United States with very deep historical roots. The phrase was written under the image of a rattle snake and emblazoned on a yellow flag. This is known as the Gadsden flag and falls within the historical flags of America.

First Things First!  Where Did it Come From?

You can do an online search and find lots of details about the phrase “dont tread on me” and how it’s connected to the Gadsden Flag and Benjamin Franklin, etc.  Not all the stories or timelines are the same.  Here’s a good overview to give you a really good idea of it’s general history from inception to present day.

The short answer to “where did it come from” is – The War of Independence in the United States (also known as the Revolutionary War) in the 1770’s.  The United States was not actually the United States at all at that time.  It was known as the “American Colonies” ruled by the world’s superpower at the time – Great Britain.  

As the story goes, during late 1775 when the rebellion against the British rule of the colonies was already well underway, the American army (known as the Continental Army) was waiting in Cambridge, Massachusetts under orders from their General George Washington.  At the same time the British were occupying Boston.  The Continental Army was not well-equipped and disease and other hardships were taking their toll on the troops.  This was around the time of the famous battle of Bunker Hill where George Washington’s troops were so low on gun powder that they were ordered not to fire until they saw the “whites of their eyes” because this would mean their enemy was in close range which would increase the odds of hitting their target.

Around that time, an American merchant ship returned to Philadelphia from England with information regarding several British supply ships that were soon to sail for America laden with ammunition and military supplies.  In order to take advantage of a strategic opportunity to capture those supplies and gain an advantage against the British troops, the Continental Congress (U.S. Government at the time) devised a plan to intercept the ships.  The key element in that plan was to create a navy (The Continental Navy).  It was a fledgling navy with just 7 ships, but it was a start.

As part of the grand plan to create and deploy this Navy, Congress authorized the assembly of five companies of Marines.  As it happened, a number of the Marines that enlisted shortly after that were carrying yellow drums bearing the image of a rattlesnake, coiled and ready to strike, and bearing the phrase “Don’t Tread on Me.”

Though not portrayed in this painting, the Gadsden Flag was flown on Commodore Hopkins’ flagship The Alfred

So Where Did the Name “Gadsden” Come from and how is it Associated with “Don’t Tread on Me”?

Christoper Gadsden was an American “patriot” or “rebel” depending on which side you were on!  He was a merchant (and yes, like Benjamin Franklin, a slave-owner in South Carolina), a soldier and a politician.  He was an American statesman and Brigadier General in the Continental Army.  At this point in history, Gadsden was a delegate to Congress and was also a member of the Marine Committee.  In addition, he was the commander of the First South Carolina Regiment of the Continental Army.

The Gadsden flag was created by Christopher Gadsden and while other Independence-era symbols came out around the same time as Gadsden’s logo and slogan, none has stood the test of time like this one!   He presented a copy of this flag to his state legislature in Charleston, S.C. and its popularity soon soared!

In 1775 before the departure of the first mission of the American Navy, a copy of the Gadsden flag was given to the Commander-in-Chief of the Navy Commodore Esek Hopkins.  He used it on the mainmast of his ship (the Alfred) as a unique personal standard.

What Does It Mean?

The use of the snake or more specifically the rattlesnake did not happen by chance. The fact is that the eastern diamondback rattlesnake and the timber rattlesnake were both fairly abundant within the colonies. In a satirical article, Benjamin Franklin suggested that the Americas send rattlesnakes to Britain as a response to their sending of convicted criminals to the colonies.  He wanted to establish the rattlesnake as a “mascot” for American colonies because of the qualities it represents.  A quote from Franklin explains:

“She never begins an attack, nor, when once engaged, ever surrenders: She is therefore an emblem of magnanimity and true courage.”…”but their wounds however small, are decisive and fatal:—Conscious of this, she never wounds til she has generously given notice, even to her enemy, and cautioned him against the danger of stepping on her.—Was I wrong, Sir, in thinking this a strong picture of the temper and conduct of America?”

Benjamin Franklin

Franklin went on to outline to his friend Christopher Gadsden, the qualities of the rattlesnake that he admired as it related to the American struggle for independence:

  • The Rattlesnake is found in no other quarter of the world besides America
  • The rattlesnake also has sharp eyes, and “may therefore be esteemed an emblem of vigilance.
  • She never begins an attack, nor, when once engaged, ever surrenders: She is therefore an emblem of magnanimity and true courage
  • The rattle = the number of the Colonies united in America

In one of America’s earliest political cartoons, Franklin published a picture of a segmented snake to symbolize a divided America.  His point was to admonish all colonial Americans to unite or die.  Whatever one may say of, or think of the symbol of the “don’t tread on me” flag, there is no doubt that its actual origin is 100% pro-revolution and anti-British.  It was conceived of and developed in a totally non-racial context during the revolutionary war.

The Gadsden Flag was intentionally designed not to convey a racist message, but a patriotic one.

HOWEVER, It appears as though the meaning of the flag has changed (and is changing) from a historic symbol of patriotism (and more recently a general expression of personal freedom and God-given individual rights) to something much more insidious and dishonorable.

While many today use the dont tread on me flag as both a tribute to American resilience AND an expression of their own desire to remain free and liberated (much like many people display the Stars and Stripes for the same reason), things started to change in the early 2000’s.  Somehow, the Gadsden Flag became associated with extremism in the “conservative” ranks like various libertarian causes, gun-rights advocates and far-right political groups.   In a word, it was politicized!

Then, to add to the confusion and misrepresentation of the flag, some supporters of some of these groups were accused of being racist.  The critics of those supporters then decided to use the flag itself as a symbol of bigotry and racism.

The symbolism in the flag partnered by the image holds deep meaning. Basically, the “Don’t Tread on Me” phrase combined with the snake ready to strike is a warning. This tells people not to step on or take advantage of the Americans or they will strike.  Unfortunately, it appears that different groups and individuals throughout the country, interpret the symbol to mean a whole lot of other things besides its original intent. 

For example,  in 2014, an African American postal worker submitted an official complaint which made its way to the courts, alleging that he was discriminated against by a co-worker who simply wore a hat with the snake symbol.  Apparently, it was racist in his eyes because in his own words he stated;

“Christopher Gadsden was a slave trader and owner of slaves”

…and so that means his flag (whatever it was meant to mean) is now racist.  We often forget that many “slave owners” did not fit the profile of what we’re told is accurate history in the movies.  Benjamin Franklin himself was a slave owner who treated his servants as family and gave them grace, mercy and opportunity.

Some have said that because some Tea Party backers like the flag, it’s now a symbol of “anti-government overreach, 2nd Amendment enthusiasts”.

This is ABSOLUTELY THE BEST collection of Don’t Tread on Me Patches ever assembled in one place!  Seriously!
BladeHQ Amazon

 

The use of the snake or more specifically the rattlesnake did not happen by chance. The fact is that the eastern diamondback rattlesnake and the timber rattlesnake were both fairly abundant within the colonies. In a satirical article, Benjamin Franklin suggested that the Americas send rattlesnakes to Britain as a response to their sending of convicted criminals to the colonies.

In one of America’s earliest political cartoons, Franklin published a picture of a segmented snake to symbolize a divided America.  His point was to admonish all colonial Americans to unite or die.  Whatever one may say of, or think of the symbol of the “don’t tread on me” flag, there is no doubt that its actual origin is 100% pro-revolution and anti-British.  It was conceived of and developed in a totally non-racial context during the revolutionary war.

The unfortunate truth is that often, the meaning of symbols is fluid and changing.  Even the much-hated-for-good-reason Nazi Swastika was used in numerous contexts before the conception of the Nazi party.  Believe it or not, it was even used in some official contexts within the American Military!  Among other meanings, it is clear that it is often adopted by those with a general or even vague approval or even outright enthusiasm for the concept of minimal government and freedom of rights for individuals.

Development of the Flag

Currently, there are several variations of this flag but the message remains the same. The following are some of the minor changes that may be found for the Gadsden flag.

  • The typeface can either be serif or sans-serif.
  • The word “Don’t” may be written with or without the apostrophe.
  • The earliest versions of the flag show that the rattlesnake is facing to the left. However, some versions today show that the snake is facing the right.
  • Most representations of the flag dating from 1887 to 1917 show a completely yellow background where the snake is resting. A recent addition, however, is the green grass beneath the snake.
  • Some parts of the United States today have declared the flag unsavory with some uncomforted reports about arrests on people who have the flag on display. Fair recently, the city of New Rochelle, New York have actually removed the flag from their military armory. The reasoning was that the flag is often used by the tea party movement.

Speaking of Don’t Tread on Me!

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tactical pen

 

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Historical Summary and Use

Upon development, the flag was used by various groups within America. The Continental Marines is one of the most popular groups that used this flag, unfurling it side by side with the Moultrie flag. The United States Navy also utilized an earlier version of the flag.

As mentioned earlier, the first use of this flag was by Commodore Esek Hopkins. He was the first Commander in Chief for the New Continental Fleet. His ships sailed for the first time in the year 1776 on the month of February. It was then shown by Colonel Christopher Gadsden to the Continental Congress.

Today, the flag is being used by the Tea Party Movement (as previously mentioned) – which is why the symbol is currently getting some bad reputation. Still, the rattlesnake is still a powerful image and is actually being used by Nike in support of the US national men’s soccer team. Even the band Metallica has recorded a song entitled “Don’t Tread on Me

In spite of its wide variety of uses and meanings, it’s disheartening to see that even those who collect all types of flags have mostly shied away from flying it (as most collectors like to fly some of their flags on occasion) because it can reflect an ideology or political viewpoint that may offend some!

The crazy thing is that many who are intimidated from displaying the flag, don’t even know who they are offending or why it’s offensive (since it originally spoke of freedom from British domination)!  Yes, it’s gotten that bad!

Why is it Offensive?

In all my research, I still can’t figure out why many otherwise seemingly rational left-leaning liberal or “progressive” citizens of the USA persecute those who fly this flag.  We understand that there have been white supremacist groups who have used the flag as part of their own symbolism, but most rational people can understand that just because a fringe group adopts a national symbol, that is no reason to persecute those who display the symbol (since most who display the symbol probably display it as a symbol portraying its original meaning). 

Can you imagine if every Conservative Republican decided to persecute anyone who displays a photo of a rainbow because it has been adopted by the LGBTQ community?  The rainbow was originally a symbol of a promise given to us by God to never again destroy the earth with a flood.  The symbol has been taken by the gay community to symbolize their lifestyle and agenda which has nothing to do with the original symbolism of the rainbow.  I don’t see widespread denunciations of rainbows in this world by those who oppose the LGBTQ lifestyle!  Can you please return the favor?

My Gadsden Soapbox

In the case of the Gadsden flag, the symbolism is that of American independence and pride, telling England (and any other would-be America-haters) to “lay off – we bite if you screw with our freedom!”  I am not a racist and I appreciate that symbolism.  If you are a Democrat, appreciate a “women’s right to choose”, whole-heartedly celebrate same-sex marriage, really like Hilary Clinton, contemplated moving to Canada when Trump was elected, or otherwise appreciate a left-wing, liberal, progressive social and political agenda, YOU ARE WELCOME HERE AT KNIFEUP!  However, please don’t go off on a tantrum about how everyone who loves America and displays the Gadsden flag as a symbol of our great country is a Trump-loving, woman-hating, immigrant-hating, Nazi-loving, Republican racist.  It’s simply not true and I sincerely believe you know that in your heart.  

Why Is This Important?

The “Don’t Tread on Me” flag is a very important representation of American history. Nowadays, the United States is proud of its freedom – sometimes even stating that it is the freest country in the world.

The Gadsden flag, however, represents the time when America is in the process of fighting for its freedom. Therefore, it is a wonderful symbol of the country’s strength and willpower- leading it to become the world leader it is today. Young Americans will do well to know the impact and underlying meaning of this flag to their history.

If you’re fascinated, or even just a tad bit curious, check out some excellent collector’s items for both flag enthusiasts and freedom proponents HERE!

 

 

Peter Stec
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Comments

  1. Replies to this article best exemplify how the structure of Western society has been eroded by erred correctness, may that be political, cultural, racial and whatnot. I was staggered by the sensitivities of some individuals who replied to a mostly innocuous piece of writing. Nothing in that article but the reference to the LGBTQI+ community was meant to provoke, and that too is not remotely offensive in itself. That is the detrition I am talking about. Provocation for the purpose of rational argument does not make the argument, or even the means one utilises to get to it, incursive or galling just because the argument or the means may be subject to political or cultural tentativeness. I am a homosexual, (half-)American man who supports (Lincoln’s) Republicanism, and would vote for the Federalists in the days of the Founding Fathers. At the same time I support choice in the matter of abortion to a certain temporal extent, I am a staunch supporter of strict gun control and I oppose the prevalent (today) interpretations of the 2nd, 11th and 14th constitutional amendments. I have been admitted to the bar of the state of New York and been called to the bar by Gray’s Inn (E&W), and consider myself a constructionist in judicial interpretation. Thus the “Don’t Tread on Me” flag is a national symbol with an awesome thrust, it had been restored as the Jack of our Navy for almost two decades now and now the oldest ship of the fleet (USS Blue Ridge (LCC-19)) dons it. It is nothing but a symbol of American pride, regardless of its use by groups who threaten the very core of American values.

    1. Hello,
      I’m a Cuban American and I have so much love for the USA and it’s patriotic sentiment. I only lived in Cuba for 15 years. I have been in my USA for almos 30. I respect the symbols and was always curious about the origins and meaning of this one in particular. Thank you for your article.

  2. “Unfortunately, it appears that different groups and individuals throughout the country, interpret the symbol to mean a whole lot of other things besides its original intent.”

    Why is that unfortunate? You’re a real strict originalist, hmm? Couldn’t get past that, and it’s at the start!

    1. Hey Jerry;

      I’m not really sure what you mean by your comment, or how you “couldn’t get past that”. I’m guessing you do not agree with me, but that’s okay. It’s called “life”. I think you’re mature enough to “get past that” and read the rest of the article if you care about the topic. I’m guessing (though I could be wrong) that you are in favor of abortion, and if so, you and I would be on opposite sides of the issue. However, if you wrote your reasons as to why you think abortion is an awesome thing, I would have no problem reading it (though I would certainly disagree with your conclusion).
      See, it’s not so hard! Thanks for checking out Knifeup!

      Oh, by the way, you asked “why is that unfortunate?” Here’s the answer; It’s unfortunate because many good citizens who would like to celebrate the resilience and resolve of our country’s founding generations, are having their car windows smashed and properties vandalized by displaying the very symbol that shows their patriotism to the FULL United States of America. Is that a decent answer or did I fall woefully short? 🙂

      J.

    2. What would Ben Franklin think? He made this symbol when the British were trying to take over. How does this apply to USA, the most powerful nation in the world?

  3. The flag standing alone is typically not viewed as racist. But when it sits alongside the Confederate rebel flag, CSA flag, Swastika flag, MAGA flag etc. (like many right-wing political rallies nowadays), we know exactly what it is intended.

    1. Sheldon,
      You are incorrect historically.

      The Confederates and the CSA were all Southern Democrats. The Civil War was REALLY a War between the Northern Democrats and the Southern Democrats as the Republican Party was not even 10 years old and was formed as an Abolitionist Party (in 1856?) to free the Slaves (hence Lincoln’s Emancipation). There is not one Republican on record of ever owning a slave. YouTube ‘Candace Owens’. She’s recently been in front of Congress stating these very things.

    2. Coming in late but as a patriot and a veteran I feel compelled to say:
      Just how fortunate are we that we have the freedom to disagree and discuss? Our fore fathers could not anticipate the complexities of our modern day issues. This flag was not created out of hate. The United States of America was not built on hate. We are in an abyss of “Us vs Them” amongst our neighbors. Literally, the person living next door. Let us not forget that America represents freedom. Freedom to say and act on what you believe, so long as it does not take away your neighbors rights to do the same.
      I have had my Thin Blue Line bumper sticker ripped from my car four times. They have the right to disagree with my support of police officers. They do not have the right to damage my property. My response? I have, at any given time, at least three Thin Blue Line bumper stickers in my car ready to mount. My point being – if you believe in it, stand for it. But stand for it out of respect, not out of hate.
      For those who have negative responses to this flag and to America as a whole, I have good news for you – You don’t have to stay! If you are not happy with your life as an American, go find the happiness you feel is owed to you in another country. And I’ll tell you “God Speed”, because you’ll need it.

  4. I don’t think that “don’t tread on me” has 13 letters was mentioned.

  5. But that’s the irony here. This flag represents the fight that we (America) put up in order to gain the freedom that we have today – the freedom to be LGBTQ+ without it being illegal or punishable by death. The author never said that gays aren’t persecuted, he was simply drawing a similarity in symbols being adopted for representations other than what they originally meant. And because of that, people are persecuted for flying this flag. Also, whether conversion therapy is truly legal or not, being part of the LGBTQ+ community certainly is legal in America, because we’re free.

  6. I was recently at a survival store and I saw the symbol and I liked it, then a family member made a comment that it was racist in some way. I decided to Google it and just read about it I personally love history and facts are facts. When this flag came out it meant we came Together As Americans. If anyone comes to this country I believe they should act American because we are all Americans. I think that I will not take it off my car even though I’m taking a risk of ignorant people who don’t love or understand the real meaning of American history. I have a bi-racial child so I am anything but racist. I have Jesus in my heart and I love history and I still believe that should you come to this country I do not mind, but I just want people to be American, so if it symbolizes being American and being proud of it I think we should all get a flag out and stick them on our cars and stay true to the fact that it’s okay to change, and America is always going to be changing but let’s remember to love and respect I’m keeping it on my car! Go Marines go Navy hoorah

    1. Hooyah Hoorah! Also a Christian, also have a bi-racial family 🙂

    2. I love your reply. My kids are of mixed race as well and I teach them not to hate but to look beyond normal stereotypes. I have the Gadsden license plates on my truck and I’m proud of it. To me it stands for freedom and says don’t tread on my rights. Never as a hate symbol in any way. I have plenty of friends who aren’t Caucasian that have it on there trucks and cars. No big deal!

  7. I appreciate your in depth and somewhat fair explanation of the Gadsen flag. I came to your site just after reading the wikipedia article on it and found your thoughts pretty much the same as there. I figure if wikipedia’s pretty good then you are too.

    However, when you characterize left leaning people as persecuting, you’re wrong. Just like being told in a restaurant not to use the f word. That’s not persecution. That is someone else saying to you “hey this offends me”. Now you can keep using the f word, freedom of speech and all that, but if you do you’re just being a jerk. You’re not being persecuted.

    The meaning of symbols change over time. As a southerner I love the battle flag. For me it means hot weather, watermelon, ya’ll, yes sir, no sir, SEC football, grits, cornbread and NASCAR. But, for others, it means racism, slavery, and jim crow. Out of respect for others I don’t fly that flag. And I appreciate the fact that you don’t either.

    Unfortunately the Gadsen flag has ended up in the same situation. Today it seems to be flown as a signifier of affiliation to an ideology that, to me, is abhorrent to the principles that our country was founded on. The idea that you can have a country that IS NOT based on ethnicity. That ANY citizen can rise to the top given that they agree to ideas rather ethnicity.

    Ultimately, because the far right has co-opted this flag, and to some extent co-opted libertarianism. I will not fly this flag. And while I won’t persecute, seeing as how I’m not a prosecutor, I will look askance at those that do.

    1. It is a sad time indeed when people in this country just sit around and poke fingers at one another about race, discrimination and flags that are offensive to some people. It shows how far our country has fallen from its original ideals, and how social media has poisoned and corrupted the minds of the citizens of this country. Ignorance is to blame on the hatred of such beloved historical standards as this flag, the original meaning of its purpose has been washed away by those that have no idea of why it is still important to bear this standard today, to show that we are a country of citizens that will not be controlled by a foreign entity and if our liberty is put to the wire we will fight with the very same passion that won our independence. If you find this offensive or racist you truly need professional help.

  8. I don’t see what the problem is, while this flag may be flown by some people who are racist it does not mean that anyone who likes the flag is part of that group. As a Mexican American, I do not see anything wrong with this. It is no different than putting someone in a box because they own a gun for example, or judging someone who doesn’t go to church- this is a free country.

    Putting a label on someone based on an individual belief is both ignorant and unfair to that person. There is already so much division in this country because of extreme thinking and judgment being placed on others.

    We are all Americans and it sure would be nice to see some agreement and less negativity.
    Thanks for your time everybody.

    1. https://thecount.com/2014/06/08/las-vegas-shooters-gadsden-flag/
      this flag was placed over the bodies of 2 police officers here in Las Vegas a few years ago. They were slain as they ate lunch in broad daylight. A once proud symbol of America has been hijacked by those who do not have America`s best interest at heart. Two domestic terrorists ambushed the officers and fled to the Wal Mart next door where they killed a concealed carry man who heroically tried to stop them. Both were eventually killed.

  9. Hi Ann;
    The only catch to your comment is that the only person I know (personally) who flies the Gadsden flag is ME. I also know that I am absolutely NOT a racist. To me, the original meaning of the flag is absolutely a symbol of American pride and patriotism. Even Ben Franklin used the symbol of a snake to stir American pride against the British. I wouldn’t fly the Confederate flag because it represents an ideology and political system that DID exude racism and suppression of Black slaves to do the bidding of their overlords. That is morally wrong, but wanting to be free from political slavery (taxation without representation) is not wrong and I agree with the symbol of a snake bite against England as a declaration of freedom and revolt against a corrupt government.

  10. I use this flag as a libertarian. “Don’t tread on me” symbolizes for me how the government shouldn’t be stomping on our rights as Americans!

    1. I’m not sure what you’re saying, but you’re welcome in this forum with any constructive comments/ideas/thoughts!
      Thanks for stopping by,
      J.

    2. Just saw this. I am a Republican myself, though more conservative. What rights have the current republican-led government stomped on? Can you be more specific? I have been hearing for a while now that our government is taking our rights away, but I have seen no evidence of that.

      I would actually appreciate some clarification.

      Thank you.

  11. … except for that whole “we rule over you because we started your pathetic little country” thing from the King of England! Maybe some would see that as the king of England “f#@!ing” with an entire country that would like to have fair representation for their taxes.

    I guess there are always two ways to see lots of issues like the breath of fresh air finally coming from the Alabama legislature dealing with the defining moral issue of our culture, etc. Some see that as a throwback to draconian times and the dark ages and hate for women, while others see it as the first sensible law coming from a heathen culture that values the “rights” of a woman over her own body, but not the rights that a baby has to LIFE itself! Crazy world huh?

    cheers,
    J.

  12. Your freedom isn’t free. It cost the blood of many soldiers, so don’t take it for granted. If it wasn’t for patriots dying you would be in slavery for the worse.

  13. I often wonder why political affiliation bother to bait people. Religious ideology also sneaks into a conversation and the emotional manipulation takes over rather than an open honest dialogue. The snake cut into pieces also has historical significance in modern times the enemies of freedom and uniting as a people is undermined by choosing sides.

    Standing up for one’s beliefs is easy in an online forum it is when our lives are on the line and the person next to us that the real test occurs.

    Historically many have died for what they believe in and fought sadly the rebel rousers have a pen or a keyboard and when the bodies are cold and those of us stacking the bodies of the enemy and mourning our lost loved ones those pulling the strings are urging us to give or admonish those willing to die.

    Survival is for the sheep those in sheep’s clothing are the ones that need to have a reckoning. The Iranian hackers and foreign polititical activists that do not live here and feed the people their ideals while living under a regime of terror with a grip on the throat of those that dare dream to one day live free.

    1. Umm, no, that’s not what toxic masculinity is. Toxic masculinity is what happens when traditionally “male” character traits are taken to an unacceptable extreme. For example, men initiating sexual/romantic encounters is traditonal, perfectly fine, male behavior. Grabbing women by the p____ is toxic.

  14. I know a decent amount of history but I have to admit my ignorance when it.came to this design. When I bought a tshirt with this on it, I had no idea the other meanings behind it. I simply love snakes with Diamondbacks being one of my favs. I like the don’t mess with me or trample my rights part as well. I’m pleased to know it has a history I support and have embodied in the past. Screw the racists and the Tea Party! I’m wearing my rebel flag and snake shirt.

  15. Damn Yankees also put out a song called “Don’t Tread on Me” in 1992.
    Like this version much better than Metallica’s.

  16. Kristiana Jourgensen…One can only hope that people will start to understand what you are saying here…

  17. I am so proud of our founding fathers standing up against tyrannical England, but not the way we treated American Indians later.

  18. As long as you don’t screw with me, I won’t screw with you. Leave me be and I will leave you be. If I’m really that terrible, then fight me coward. But right now, I have no quarrel with you so shut it and leave me in peace.

  19. 99.5% of what you said, Amen.
    Peace and best of luck to you.
    We all need luck about now.
    Enough division.
    Weary Viet Nam Vet

  20. To be completely honest, I didn’t read the whole comment… but what I did read, I must say that I completely agree with you. Have you ever heard of The Coffee Party? I’d they are still around, look into them. They are anti-partisan activists. You might like them.

  21. Anissa, the money quote is misstated. It is “for the love of money” There is nothing wrong with money or having money just don’t love it above all else.

  22. Thanks Thanks for throwing your vote over to the crazy right. Yes both sides are crooked however the right is insane and is trying to destroy us all. And thanks for letting everyone else carry the burden for you so that you can live free and happy. We will all do the work just sit back and relax and eat your Pesticide laden snacks while we do the heavy lifting. I’m sure you’re very proud of yourself for doing nothing.

  23. Stop with the god stuff. God is used as an agenda pusher. A way to manipulat e conversation.

  24. Its a very selfish self centered statement and everyone with it on their license plate I’ve noticed are the rudest pushest drivers!

  25. Don’t tread on me is code for corrupt government in Washington DC stay out of my life and stay away from me.

  26. I hope you are American. You restore some faith in my delusions about that divided nation.

  27. What about us Americans that served this FREE country and destroyed our bodies to maintain the freedom and now at 60 years old are confined to our homes most of the time in bed because we cannot get pain medication. Reason being this government doesn’t want us to be addicted. Well where the fuck were you when I was shot 4 tiimes in the back. You government assholes were home in your warm beds thinking about who you would screw next. I feel for the families who have lost loved ones due to drug abuse I really do but for the love of God don’t make me suffer for it when I wanted to protect your freedom and rights as a human being and mine. Sincerely pissed!! Jeff

  28. Cool stuff i feel more educated after moving from Illinois to panama city Florida about the roots of America.
    They sugar coat so much up there, its crazy. Im the baby of six born in 1962, my oldest brother went off to Vietnam and i remember a patch he had that said dont tread on me.
    Life hear feels like freedom, i love this town and my county, my father serve in WW2 he turned 18 years old in the pacific ocean.
    We all need to remember we have a president in the white house, stop bashing him you are embarrassing all Americans.
    If you don’t like are president vote against him next time.
    If you are wondering who i am, well i am ex union man born and raised union. The union sucks but with out it what would have.
    The union sets the standard for are wages, when your blue cooler like me, 32 years working on garbage trucks just so you know.

  29. This historic banner should be flown and interpreted only as our founders intended it to be. No group, political or otherwise, should construe meaning or intent beyond that. Tea party, be damned; those crackers haven’t a clue when it comes to the founding of America and the sacrifices that were made to create a nation of free and self determining individuals.

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