by Phil Greazzo of West Manchester National Director of FixOurFlag.org
Two hundred and thirty one years ago our country declared its "freedom" and from then ‘til now a lot has changed. Back then being an American was something people in this country took very seriously but today so many people just take it for granted.
Instead of celebrating Independence Day, the holiday has become the "Fourth of July" and used as a good reason to have friends and family over for BBQ’s. While everyone is getting fat and happy off all the food, the treats, soda and alcohol, how many actually stop to realize the sacrifice that went into giving them the freedom to enjoy this activity? Unless you’re a military family or have a loved one who’s gone off to war, not many people even stop to take a minute to think about it during their party.
More often, less and less people give a second thought to being an American. Yet there are still some things left that are unmistakably American. Everyone recognizes the National Anthem when it’s played, even if they don’t know all the words. Our Pledge of Allegiance is another example, although some disagree over the original version and theaddition of "under God" and those who wish to add "born and unborn" to the ending.
Regardless of your level of patriotism, thoughts of what being an American really means or the sacrifice that goes into earning our freedom, one thing we all recognize as the symbol of America is our Flag. It’s known throughout the world to stand for freedom, liberty and justice for all. No matter where you go Old Glory is recognized instantly. Whether it’s outside a hotel or embassy, in a book, or part of a product label, it’s the unmistakable trademark, brand and logo of America.
When you close your eyes and think of the American Flag only one image comes to mind. However, as I said, some things have changed along the way. The Flag we all know and love so much, is now displayed backward by the U.S. Army, and yet, somehow, it’s considered O.K. by some because the Army says so. I disagree whole heartedly! I hope you do too.
A free flying American Flag has a backside like everything else does. That backside shouldn’t become the representation of our country though. Because of the Army’s improper display the backward Flag is spreading to first responder uniforms nationwide. If left unchallenged the stand alone backward Flag will soon represent America. If our own government fails to correct it, the only thing it will truly represent is the backward direction our country is moving on so many issues.
The Founders designed our Flag and intended for it to be displayed a certain way, backward wasn’t one of them. Let’s not allow our Flag to become just another thing taken for granted. This Independence Day take a moment to think about those who have sacrificed for our freedom and the Flag that represents it.