New Jersey  Gov. Chris Christie has ordered flags flown at half-staff at state government buildings Saturday in memory of Whitney Houston.

The governor says Houston was a “cultural icon” who belongs in the same category in New Jersey music history as Frank Sinatra, Count Basie and Bruce Springsteen. He says her accomplishments ...were “a great source of pride for the people of the state.”

This order is completely within the Governor's discretion, and nothing requires that the person being honored had been in military or political service to  his or her country.  As a matter of fact, Christie ordered flags by flown at half-staff in honor of E-Street saxophonist Clarence Clemons last summer.

There's no question that Whitney Houston was a notable person from New Jersey, or that the impact of her music was considerable and her talent will be greatly missed.

The question I've heard in relation to this honor being bestowed on Whitney Houston is, does that musical contribution outweigh the problems she had in her personal life?  Does flying the flag at half-staff say we condone or overlook a life and talent largely wasted by drug abuse over the last years of her life?

I'd like to hear your thoughts on the subject.  Please vote in the poll and leave your comments in the section below...