A little more than a week ago, a local man posted a short video on his Facebook page to challenge other people to show their patriotism. In the video, Arizona resident Bryce Wagoner can be seen standing in front of his house and the American flag waving in the background.
The video gathered 2 million views within 48 hours of being uploaded.
He said, “I had to build another Facebook page because my personal page has completely blown up.
“I’m glad the message went this far. It’s a simple message but it has a lot of meaning to a lot of people.”
Wagoner came up with his challenge after he saw the Eric Sheppard Challenge that surfaced on social media last month. Sheppard, member of the black nationalist New Black Panthers Party, was seen walking on the American flag at the Georgia’s Valdosta State University during a protest against racism. This act was claimed as a legal form of the freedom of expression under the First Amendment.
In the video, Sheppard said that he was a “terrorist towards white people.”
Sheppard’s supporters took to social media and showed their support.
According to USA Today, Wagoner said in the video, “This is for all the videos I’ve seen on the Internet of people stomping on their flags and stuff. … I challenge everyone to go get a flag, go put it on your front lawn and put it in your front yard and display it proudly and show you’re proud to be an American.”
In an interview with KPNX-TV, Phoenix, he said, “I think there’s been a lot of negativity.”
Brent Greer, who had painted the outside of his home in Bradenton, Fla., like an American flag, showed strong approval of Wagoner’s challenge.
Greer said, “Somebody sent me a video on Facebook of some idiots stomping the flag, decrying American and it’s really disgusting.
“You don’t respond to these idiots by getting in their face and getting violent, you put the flag out and you stand for what it stands for.”
Since Wagoner’s challenge went viral, he has received objections from people where they have said it wasn’t legal to display their U.S. flags.
In fact, some homeowners associations did discourage people from displaying their U.S. flags in certain subdivisions. But in 2006, the Freedom to Display the American Flag Act of 2005 was signed by President George W. Bush, under which condominium, homeowners and real-estate management associations couldn’t prohibit people from displaying the U.S. flag on residential property.
“This is just a simple message for people,” Wagoner said.
“Just go put a flag up and display that you’re a proud American.”
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