SAN JOSE, CA: June 14, 2019 — Although many Americans celebrate Memorial Day or Veteran’s Day far fewer celebrate events like Flag Day.
Partly because there is no three day weekend but also due to the toxic political climate in the nation on this day.
Flag Day, June 14, has gone through a bit of a revival since the election of Donald Trump. June 14 is also President Trump’s birthday. The President was born on June 14, 1946.
Although we celebrate the birthday of the Stars and Stripes, it is not an official federal holiday. If not deserving of an official 3-day weekend, Americans may wonder what meaning does the day have?
Which may have more to do with the people who have forgotten what the U.S. flag truly stands for. Few Americans take much time to even reflect on the deeper meaning of the U.S. flag. How many flags do you see flown in front of American houses?
There may be many more who fail to realize that at the time of the creation of the flag, there was no formal nation of the United States of America.
From a historical standpoint, the Independence Day holiday on July 4, 1776, is the birthday of the United States of America.
It can cause enduring confusion over when the U.S. government came into existence. However, in 1776, the U.S. was still fighting for its existence.
The U.S. was not an officially recognized nation among the community of nations until 1783. It took a peace treaty between Great Britain and France and the new republic to establish this nation. Before that time, the government, under the Articles of Confederation, was a treasonous body of illegally assembled men dealing with the tumultuous times as best as they could.
On June 14, 1777, that treasonous body of men that called themselves the Continental Congress decreed that there would be a flag for the new nation:
“That the flag of the United States be 13 stripes alternate red and white; that the Union be 13 stars, white in a blue field, representing a new constellation.”
On this day in 1777, the U.S. was still not an officially recognized nation among the community of nations. Nonetheless, illegally assembled men had the guts and the vision to create an official flag for the new country before the legal recognition of the United States among the community of nations.
The Continental Congress envisioned the new nation.
That founding resolution of Congress made the U.S. flag the official emblem of the country. Even before the government became officially authorized or recognized. The birth of the flag, reflective of the unity of the people in their desire for freedom from tyranny, was eventually followed by the adoption of the guiding principles of the very first U.S. government. Those principals embodied in the Articles of Confederation.
1777 was the same year the Continental Congress has organized and approved the revolutionary government of the fledgling nation. However, it was not until 1781 that the colonies finally ratified the Articles of Confederation, and the U.S.A. became a self-proclaimed government of the people.
While the chronology may seem inconsequential, the Flag’s chronology is historically significant.
It may represent a much deeper significance. Fundamentally, the U.S. flag represented the organization of each of the 13 colonies, the respective populations of the country in their specific geographic regions. However, deeper still, the flag essentially represented the unity of the people in their most desperate desire for freedom.
In other words, the flag was understood to be a symbol of the unity of people and not the representation of the U.S. government because, at the time, there was no official government. The flag has always represented the unity of the people willing to fight and die for freedom.
Throughout U.S. history, the flag has changed though always remaining the Stars and Stripes, the symbol of the union of a free people.
As the nation grew, the Stars and Stripes became entwined with the history of the people’s struggle for freedom and self-determination. It was a symbol of hope against all hope during the War of 1812 when Francis Scott Key witnessed the miracle of the flag still flying above Ft. McHenry after 25 consecutive hours of British naval bombardment.
This single event in U.S. history, captured in the words of an eyewitness, gave proof not only that the “flag was still there,” but that American resolve was still alive.
At other moments in our country’s history, the flag represented hope freedom from tyranny.
One of the most famous pictures during World War II is the pic of U.S. Marines raising the flag above Iwo Jima.
The symbol of the flag in a victorious manner, after such an embittered battle, gave hope to Americans that the war could soon end. After September 11, 2001, the picture of the firefighters raising the U.S. flag amidst the rubble of the destruction of the toppled towers gave hope that America could overcome such insidious devastation.
The flag has also continued to serve as a symbol to other people in other lands yearning for freedom because the U.S.A. ultimately earned the reputation as the land of a free people, even though many of the people who came to this land had to fight for their freedom. The majority of people have attained freedom in this country because they were willing to work for it and even fight for it. The founders managed to plow the field and sow the seeds of liberty. There were no guarantees made that this incredible experiment would ever work correctly or even work at all.
The structure and organization of our government permitted this quest and struggle for freedom for so many people from all over the world. This nation today is a land where such freedom is cherished even to the point of allowing people their freedom to burn the flag.
However, even when someone burns the flag in disrespect, it says much more about them than the action of desecration. It either indicates the one who destroys the flag is quite ignorant or quite intolerant of what the land of the free truly means.
It is highly likely that Old Glory’s birthday will come and go with little notice.
In such a hostile political environment, there are many on the Left who would prefer that Donald J. Trump had never been born.
Our flag deserves to have a birthday. It has represented so much to so many throughout our country’s turbulent history. To every family with the flag from the coffin of their loved ones to the people that fly that flag outside their homes. Proclaiming that they are patriots.
Yet there are those who understand so little about the true value of the flag of the United States.
The one thing to remember, however, it is still the flag of we the people.
May “that Star-spangled Banner still wave… Oe’ r the land of the free and the home of the brave…”