Wednesday, May 11, 2011

May 31, 2010:  Memorial Day

Guest Column From State Representative Peter Beck
Celebrating our nation on Flag Day

As the most enduring symbol of our nation, the American flag is a reflection of the liberty, equality and unity we enjoy as citizens. On June 14th we will celebrate Flag Day, a holiday that calls us to not only remember the history of the Star Spangled Banner, but also the steadfast principles that guide our nation.

During the American Revolutionary War, the colonists waved a simple flag that, although similar to the banner we know today, paid homage to Great Britain’s flag. However, on June 14, 1777, the Continental Congress approved a design for a new flag that would represent our young nation—an assemblage of 13 stars and 13 stripes to signify the unified colonies. The Congress chose colors that would represent valor (red), purity (white), and perseverance and justice (blue)—values that we can still find both in our flag and nation today.

Nearly 140 years after the Continental Congress made this monumental decision, President Woodrow Wilson commemorated June 14th as Flag Day. Throughout the years, our red, white and blue banner has been modified numerous times, both in shape and arrangement.

Throughout these changes, Old Glory has remained a beacon of our nation’s honorable legacy throughout the world. The illustrious flag adorns military uniforms, is saluted by world-class athletes during the Olympics and was even firmly planted on the moon. As we cross into new frontiers, the flag will continue to serve as a mark of our past and future.

As we celebrate Flag Day this year, we should take time to remember the servicemen and women who have made sacrifices to protect the Stars and Stripes. Without them, our flag would not represent the valor, purity, perseverance and justice that the founding fathers intended. The sacrifice of our fellow Americans allows the flag to continue flying over the land of the free and home of the brave. So please fly your flag with pride and patriotism on June 14th and join me in saluting the individuals who make our nation great. 

As your state representative and a Marine Corps veteran, I will continue to do my part to make sure that the sacred colors of America remain as bright and steadfast as they did centuries ago.

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