We recently attended Opera San Luis Obispo's performance of Madama Butterfly and were enjoying it until the final scene. That's when we were stunned—appalled, really—to see the grief-stricken character Cio-Cio San grab the American flag off its pole (stage right), throw it onto the floor, then drag it as she sang.
There were audible gasps in the audience indicating there were many others among us deeply offended by such abuse of our flag, which is never to touch the ground.
Worse, it shows Opera San Luis' willingness to exploit and demean the tragedy of Cio-Cio San to make a gratuitous and contemporary political statement. After all, Cio-Cio was abandoned not by the U.S. government, but by a man who happened to be American.
In the future, instead of financially supporting this opera group, we will direct donations to the Wounded Warrior Project.
On a positive note, we invite readers to attend From Sea to Shining Sea, a Veterans Day concert presented by Coastal Voices Community Choir at 2 p.m. on Nov. 11 and 7 p.m. on Nov. 13 at St. Andrew church, 3945 S. Bradley Road, Santa Maria. This concert will honor our veterans, our country, and, especially, our flag.