Where Have All the Flags Gone?
I am posting this before Memorial Day for a reason; I do not want any RedStater to have guilt after the holiday.
When I was growing up, there was strong patriotic sentiment, reinforced in our schools and in the public square. Patriotic holidays were more than just a special sale for the malls, or huge flags on the car lots. Patriotic hymns were sung in churches and taught in public schools. Almost everywhere was the reinforcement of love of God and Country. The two went together. I believe that most of us grew up in families that flew the flag on special days, especially the ones that honored those that fought and died for our nation, and of course, the birthday of our Declaration of Independence. We honored America and her people, the surrounding culture supported and reinforced this. That is what culture and society is supposed to do, reinforce the foundational precepts upon which a nation exists. We celebrated America. Isn't that a beautiful thought, to honor and express support and affection for a land that gives us all opportunity?
The upheaval of the sixties brought severe societal and cultural changes, not so obvious then, but the gradual long term effect of those times have finally borne fruit. Unfortunately, some of this is rotten fruit. The secular socialists in society have taken hold of our core societal institutions - academia, government, schools, and even our churches. In 1962, they managed to remove God from public schools, laying the groundwork for taking God out of the public square. There has always been an entwined relationship between the founding principles of this nation and a belief in our Creator. The Founding Fathers wove it throughout their documents, and anyone who reads their works can see the connection and the threads of the fabric they laid out for us, to take us through the ages.
What has the secular Left brought us? While they seek to take God out of the public consciousness, with diligent relentless efforts, they have also been marginalizing patriotism and love of America. In fact, today we are seeing blatant anti-Americanism, and Achance recently gave us some background on this here. The schools don't teach the patriotic songs like they used to, the churches don't even sing them, though they remain in the hymnals. Yes, I know some of this is anecdotal, but there have been enough news stories that support what we see locally in our own school systems and churches. Kids are sent home for wearing a t-shirt with an American flag on it, and the assistant principle says he sent them home to avoid inciting violence. Ever since a Leftist administration came into power, the efforts to undermine traditional American support and loyalty has accelerated, but the groundwork was laid decades before. There is an unrestrained assault on traditional America, no holds barred. We read about it everywhere. Traditional Americans are marginalized, disparaged and treated as if they are the perpetrators of some horrible crime. Arizona has been excoriated since passing a law that is a duplicate of Federal Law, and simply says they are going to begin to enforce the law that protects their sovereign borders.
Where have all the flags gone?
The American flag is strictly a symbol, an emblem that represents a nation founded on Judaic-Christian principles, a land of freedom and opportunity. The American Revolution was fought and blood spilled to bring about her birth. Blood spilled for the 1st Amendment that allows one to burn the flag as free speech. Wars have been fought to maintain this nation, from within and without. Countless Americans (and others) have died to keep this land free, and the spirit of American Exceptionalism, alive. I see the flag as representative of her people. The American people have character, strength, durability and a can do willingness that has yet to be surpassed by other nations. When catastrophe strikes, it is the United States that responds; our military is the best in the world, made up of the Americans who get down in the trenches, they bring humanitarian aid, and they also fight tyrannical genocidal enemies, while assisting others to survive and be free.
Where have all the flags gone?
Until recently, citizens of this country, from both parties, lived their patriotism and flew their flag and spoke positively about their country. The passing decades have brought a distinct change in the culture, and genuine expressions of patriotism and respect for our nation and the flag have decreased. Been to some recent sporting event or something similar, and seen how many pay no attention to the National Anthem. Don't place their hand over their heart? Well, as the years have gone by, stop and think about it, the flag isn't in abundance either, some end up in the trash. As the veterans of past wars die off, and society has separated itself from God and Country, there is a sorrowful loss of cherishing and honoring that which is symbolic to this great nation. Yes, we saw a resurgence of patriotism and flag waving after 9/11, but it did not seem to stay with us as it should have. Each passing year our people are succumbing to the assault from the Left. Call it secularism, socialism or Communism - all of it is designed to separate the American people from their heart and character.
But we can have a resurgence. As we are seeking to take back our country and government, we can fly 'Old Glory' with love and affection, and yes, a hint of defiance, because that is what keeping that beautiful flag flying means; it means our nation is still standing and supported by those that love her. Men and women have died so that, "long may she wave" - we'll not yield the colors now. Think about that when you go to your closet and dust off that banner, or replace a worn one. Or consider a family member who might appreciate hoisting their first America flag, or an elderly neighbor who used to have one out, but may need assistance to put it up. Much like Cold Warrior and his Precinct Committeeman Project, RedStaters can fly their flags, and influence someone, somewhere, one flag at a time.
Whenever I put up my flag, I allow the sentimental feelings to flow and make no apologies, neither did Johnny Cash when he sang this. After all, what we are doing at RedState is fighting for the right to fly that beautiful symbol that represents freedom, and love of God and Country. We do it for this, "Sweet Land of Liberty."
h/t Erick B.-flag graphic
h/t Klondike-JC reminder