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Mom Does Nothing As Her Young Son Pulls Down Neighbor's American Flag & Throws It On The Ground

Photo: TikTok
Kid on security camera pulls flag out of ground

Respecting other people's property is something all kids should learn from an early age. But, that's not to say that some parents have conflicting views on what things they think their kids should and should not respect.

A TikTok of a young boy tearing down a person's American flag has some viewers divided due to the kid's mom ignoring the whole scene.

The child pulls a neighbor's American flag out of their lawn.

A woman's security camera captured a young boy uprooting, shaking and tossing her American flag. Heidi Bailen posted the footage her camera caught to TikTok in July. 

Many people scrutinized the child, but not as much as the passive mother who let him do it.

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"Wow that's a great example of parenting gone wrong," one user commented.

"It's not the child's fault. Way to go mom," another wrote.

"What and she drove off like nothing happened?! That is abuse of both flag and kid!" said another user.

Bailen put the text "Are you kidding me?" over the video. Her anger is additionally conveyed with the pouting face emoji appended to her caption.

Bailen's camera captured the mom and her son taking what appeared at first to be a regular stroll through her neighborhood. The son was on a scooter on the sidewalk and the mom was on a bicycle next to him on the street. 

The boy tries to grab the flag as he rides past it, but it slips through his fingers. He stops, and so does the mom, looking on as he walks back to it. 

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He quickly rips the flag out of the ground and shakes it. 

A white piece on its bottom flies off. The boy then throws the flag on Bailen's pavement walkup. He and his mom proceed to ride out of view.

The video has no audio, so it is unclear if any dialogue occurred. But the footage shows no evidence that the mother tried to stop or correct his behavior as it happened. Bailen tagged the video with the hashtag "#badparenting."

But not all commenters hold back from critiquing the young boy.

"Now if I saw that I would walk out there and teach him a lesson," one person commented. Some people even called for more harsh forms of discipline.

"Whoop his narrow ass!" someone wrote.

However, many people were not upset by the boy and his mom.

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However, conflicting views on whether the American flag deserves respect also appeared in the discussion.

"Respect for the kid and the mom," one person wrote.

"Good job mom!" said one user. "That little guy is a hero." 

The comments under the video turned into a fiery debate. Many who condemned him and his mother's actions were distraught by the disrespect of the United States that they felt was inseparable from the act.

On the other hand, others who praised his actions cited controversies like America's role in conflict across the globe and social issues closer to home.

Unsurprisingly, the video demonstrates Americans' divisiveness regarding the flag. A study published by YouGov found that 72% of U.S. adults are proud of the American flag, while roughly 20% are not, and the rest are undecided. 

However, that approval number drops to 67% when only polling Hispanic Americans and 59% for Black Americans. 

Others looked at the situation as separate from what many felt was a slight to American pride.

"So very sad. Someone else's viewpoint. Someone else's property," one person wrote.

"The flag isn't the issue here. The issue is the blatant disrespect of someone else's opinions and beliefs," another user commented.

Americans are more divided than ever. But some commenters prove that separating oneself from viewing an event through a polarizing lens can radically shift how one perceives a situation.

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Ethan Cotler is a writer living in Boston. He writes on entertainment and news.