I went to a seminar about two weeks after 9/11. The topic of patriotism came up, as many stations (including mine) had either put up flags on the set or decorated them in red, white and blue. Some had on-air staff members wear flag pins or ribbons. Our station never received a single complaint. No one had a problem with the show of patriotism.
One person at the seminar said she found such displays of patriotism "offensive." Most of us couldn't believe anyone could make such a statement.
So here we are again, twelve years later.
Of course, we now have an unwritten "policy" that people in the sports department can wear flag pins, patriotic ties, or whatever. But for some reason it's considered "inappropriate" for someone in the news department to do so, because it might constitute "bias."
Let me get this straight... the news business has become incredibly biased in the last ten years, so much so that our trust level has reached that of used car salesmen and lawyers, yet we would appear "biased" if we literally wore our patriotism on our sleeves? How hypocritical is that?
If I were a News Director today I'd be fine with anyone who wanted to wear an American Flag pin. And if any viewer was somehow offended, I'd remind them what country they're living in.
Political correctness has done a ton of damage to this country. We don't need to make it any worse by denying our patriotism.
Because that's one thing that doesn't demand objectivity.