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How many times a day do you drive or walk past an American flag? If you take a moment to think about it, you may do this more than you think. Do you stop and think about what our grand nation’s streamer of red, white and blue really stands for?
I believe that a reminder of the flag’s rich history and guidelines brings its meaning to light:
Our flag is a banner so sacred that it has its own pledge of allegiance. It has a particular set of guidelines and standards for use, display and disposal. For instance, it must never touch the ground and must be illuminated if flown at night. If it is no longer useable, the flag must be burned. Our flag must never be dipped. This rule became most widely-known in the 1908 Summer Olympics in London when each country’s flag bearer dipped their flag to King Edward VII — the American flag bearer was the only one who did not. After the ceremony, Team Captain Martin Sheridan was quoted as saying “this flag dips to no earthly king.”
Old Glory has been planted on the moon and it has been bravely erected by the soldiers at Iwo Jima. From the Revolutionary War, marking our freedom from Great Britain, to the current war in the Middle East — our flag has flown proudly, serving as a great reminder to our nation and to the world that we are strong. Though torn and tattered, ridden with frost in the winters and sweltering in the heat of the dessert sun, our flag still stands.
When I think of the American Flag, I think about the lyrics to an age-old song sung most frequently on the 4th of July holiday, “You’re a Grand Old Flag”. The lyrics are simple, but the message is strong:
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.
Every heart beats true ‘neath the Red, White and Blue where there’s never a boast or brag;
Should auld acquaintance be forgot, keep your eye on the Grand Old Flag.
We Stand Together, From Sea to Shining Sea
On 4th of July we celebrate the birth of our great nation. It’s a celebration of liberty and independence. It’s a reminder of the red white and blue and of the thousands upon thousands who have died in the name of our freedom.
The birth of our nation has an unforgettable history and sparked traditional celebrations that have continued for hundreds of years.
It all started in 1776, on July 2nd, when the United States of America was separated from Great Britain. Congress then focused on the Declaration of Independence, primarily authored by Thomas Jefferson, and agreed upon on July 4th of that year. Around this time, John Adams had written to his wife Abigail that it would be the most memorable epoch in the history of America. He thought that it should be, “…celebrated by succeeding generations as the great anniversary festival,” and that, “It ought to be solemnized with pomp and parade, with shows, games, sports, guns, bells, bonfires and illuminations from one end of this continent to the other, from this time forward forever more.”
John Adam’s instructions match our 4th of July traditions almost exactly. As you know, our district observes the 4th of July holiday by our many shows and picnics.
From the Boston Pops performance, to the fireworks illuminating the St. Louis sky over the Arch, to the red, white and blue celebration at Mount Rushmore, we honor our country. As millions of us gather from sea to shining sea, we stand together – not as Republicans, not as Democrats – but as Americans. It is my hope that we continue these traditions, from generation to generation, just as John Adams instructed in his letter. May we always stand together in the name of our great country.
May God bless you, bless your family and bless the United States of America.
As always I am honored to have the opportunity to be your voice in Jefferson City.
If there is anything I can do to help you please give me a call at the office at 573-751-2205 or email Tony.Dugger@house.mo.gov. 201 W. Capitol Ave, Jefferson City, MO 65101, is my office address; please feel free to send me a letter. My home phone number is 417-746-4650.