I’m really surprised no one has figured this out: Bateman is a caricature. If he’s a lieutenant colonel, then he’s a Union reenactor.

Note his name: Bateman — or is that BAITman. You’ve certainly taken his bait.

Note he openly has LTC around his name. No real officer in the military signs his name with his rank; to do so makes him/her a spokesman for the U.S. Government, and he/she risks embarrassing superior officers. Officers of flag rank don’t let embarrassing O5s stay around in their commands. If he’s retired, then the proper signature is LTC (ret.); that lets everyone know he’s out of service and voicing his own opinion.

If he really were a LTC, he obviously slept through the Command and General Staff College, which everyone has to attend before advancing in field rank (MAJ and above). Obviously he never saw the inside of Carlyle Barracks, because his history is so vapid.

So what you have there is obviously a Union reenactor.

Of course, since he owns the flag he burns, he has the right to burn it. I suggest he buy them from Ruffin Flag, so Georgia will get his money. No cheap Chinese-made battle flags, please.

My Native American wife and I like to take the flag that flew over the soldiers removing the Cherokees to the Trail of Tears, that flew over the cavalry in the attack at Sand Creek, that flew over the firing on unarmed people at Wounded Knee, that flew over soldiers distributing blankets infected with smallpox to Native Americans, that flew over soldiers attacking Chief Joseph, that flew over soldiers attempting wipe out the Seminoles until only a little over 100 remained, that forced native peoples onto "reservations" of the poorest land — yes, THAT Stars and Stripes — and burn it in memory of those Native Americans who died under Yankee General Phil Sheridan’s epithet, "The only good Indian is a dead Indian." We invite everyone to join us.

You really must forgive Bateman. When he wants a flag to burn, he has to turn outside Ohio, since Ohio doesn’t have a state flag.

John Whatley
Retired U.S. Army Field Artillery Officer
Colonel Commanding 1st Regiment Georgia State Line
Former Editor, Native American Journal