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U.S. Marine Witnessed Westboro Protesters Disrespecting American Flag — Then Something Inside Him ‘Snapped’

"And if I have to go to jail to defend that flag, I'm going to do it."

When Richard Pierce, a 64-year-old retired U.S. Marine and Vietnam veteran, heard that Westboro Baptist Church members planned to picket the funeral of Vice President Joe Biden’s son on Saturday, he decided to attend a “counter protest” to make sure there were no “problems.”

The veteran said he fully intended to “mind his own business,” but during the protest he witnessed something he just couldn’t ignore.

Pierce’s anger swelled as he watched a female protester “walking across the highway, dragging our flag under her feet.” That’s when he “snapped.”

I lost my temper and the only way that I could demonstrate that is spill my coffee on them,” he recalled to the News Journal. But really, he threw his cup of coffee at two of the protesters.

Screengrab via Delaware News Journal

A nearby officer reportedly arrested Pierce and he was charged with disorderly conduct. The only thing he regrets, however, is giving a platform to Westboro.

"So many people have died in defense of that flag. I don't care who you are, you are not going to disrespect the flag. And if I have to go to jail to defend that flag, I'm going to do it,” he said. “I take that very strongly.”

More from the News Journal:

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