[Washington Babylon ]Rick Renzi, American | Harper's Magazine

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[Washington Babylon]

Rick Renzi, American


A reader sends in this heartwarming patriotic moment, just in time for the July 4th holiday:

Just before school let out, students at Alpine Elementary were thrilled to see a new American flag flying in front of their school – only it wasn’t just any old flag. The new American flag flying in front of Alpine School once flew over the U.S. Capitol Building in Washington D.C…

In a Feb. 26 letter from U.S. Congressman Rick Renzi, included with the new flag, Renzi told students their commitment to academic excellence “will serve you well as you go forward in life.” Renzi encouraged the children to continue their studies of “our rich culture and history.”

What’s especially touching is that Renzi must have been awfully busy the day he sent that letter, seeing as it came just four days after he was indicted on federal fraud charges. (Although reporter Judy Hayes failed to mention Renzi’s indictment in the story.) As the reader who sent the item remarked, after the ceremony there was a demonstration for the kids about “how to make a shiv out of a toothbrush.”

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