Home & Garden Television (HGTV) recently offended some of its fans with a Fourth of July decorating tip.
On their website, under the title "Classic Fourth of July Table Setting Ideas," HGTV showed an American flag used as a tablecloth with various items sitting on top of the Stars and Stripes.
Many HGTV viewers went on the cable network's Facebook page to slam the flag idea.
"The flag should never touch anything beneath it, such as the ground, the floor, water or, merchandise," said Joe March, a spokesperson for the American Legion, to FoxNews.com. "The flag of the United States is designed to be flown and respected as the symbol of our country ... That very same flag is used to cover the caskets of our soldiers, sailors and Marines who have been killed in battle. You would not obviously want to take that and use that as a tablecloth."
The U.S. Supreme Court ruled in 1989 that desecrating (or in this case, decorating) the flag is protected free speech, notes Wikipedia.
"This was a regrettable use of our flag and it never should have happened," HGTV stated on its Facebook page."We sincerely apologize and have removed the post from our website. We want to assure our fans that HGTV is proud of the American flag and everything it symbolizes for our people,"
However, HGTV is not the only company to come up with this idea. The Pottery Barn also features an American flag as a tablecloth on their website.