I commemorate Flag Day each June 14 with flags and red-white-and-blue items at our home, the State Auditor's office, my car, and even my clothes. Often, people will remark: “You’re getting ready for Independence Day mighty early” or some other comment that lets me know they do not realize it is Flag Day, June 14.
I call Flag Day “the almost-forgotten day.” It is not a federal holiday like Memorial Day (last Monday in May) or Independence Day, July 4. But it comes almost mid-way between them.
It is easy to forget Flag Day since it is not a state or federal holiday.
A patriotic song that commemorates our flag is not as well-known as the Star Spangled Banner, God Bless America, and God Bless the USA. It is “You’re a Grand Old Flag:”
You're a grand old flag
You're a high-flying flag
And forever in peace may you wave
You're the emblem of
The land I love
The home of the free and the brave
Ev'ry heart beats true
Under red, white and blue
Where there's never a boast or brag
But should old acquaintance be forgot
Keep your eye on the grand old flag
June 14 was officially established as Flag Day by a proclamation of President Woodrow Wilson on May 30, 1916. On August 3, 1949, President Harry Truman signed an Act of Congress which designated June 14 as National Flag Day. The date coincides with the adoption of the flag by resolution of the Second Continental Congress in 1777.
Interestingly, and probably surprisingly, the colors of the flag have no official meaning. The same colors are used in the Great Seal, though, and they do have meaning. Red represents valor and strength, white represents purity and innocence, and blue represents perseverance and justice. The Flag Code, part of the U.S. Code, contains specific instructions on how the flag is to be used and displayed and how it is to be destroyed by burning in a dignified manner.
On Flag Day 2022, let us display our flag with gratitude for our country and the price that has been paid for our freedom, as well as with a resolve to remain “one nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.”
Jim Zeigler is the current state auditor of Alabama, having served in that office since 2015. Before becoming state auditor, he served on the Alabama Public Service Commission from 1974-1978. 1819 News does not endorse candidates for public office and welcomes the views of any candidate running for office in Alabama. The views and opinions expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the policy or position of 1819 News. To comment, please send an email with your name and contact information to Commentary@1819news.com.