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What Does The American Flag Mean To Americans?

America. The word brings many different images to mind. Maybe you think of backyard barbecues, a grill full of hot dogs and hamburgers. Or do the colors red, white, and blue fly into your stream of consciousness at the thought of the United States?


The American Flag is a symbol for everything that our country represents. It is not to be disrespected or dishonored, which is why Americans fly their flags proudly.


We are going to walk through the different meanings that the American Flag carries for American citizens.

The Core Values That The American Flag Holds

If you asked 500 Americans what the American flag means to them, you would come up with many different answers. However, you’d probably come up with a few core values and meanings that recur, no matter who you ask.


Let’s take a look at what those centralized values are.

Pride

Whether we look at our nation’s flag to check the direction of the wind, during the Pledge of Allegiance, or while listening to the national anthem, most of us feel a sense of pride. Being an American means belonging to a land of democracy, freedom, and opportunity. We are lucky to belong to a nation that values our input and ideas.

Sacrifice

Since America’s beginning, citizens have sacrificed for the greater good of the country.


Today, American war veterans sacrifice their time (and some sacrifice their lives) in order to serve and protect our country.


Such sacrifice is remembered on Veterans Day, during which we honor the men and women who served in our armed forces. Their sacrifices enable our safety and promote our progress. Their sacrifices support the growth of our democracy.


Sacrifice functions under the notion that we serve without a guarantee of personal reward, and it’s about devoting oneself to a higher public cause. Serving in the U.S Army is a noble act that requires sacrifice on many levels, and it’s representative of the attitudes that this country is based on.

Opportunity

America is synonymous with the term the land of opportunity.


Since its conception, the United States has been a place where people go to build a new and better life. Millions of immigrants left their homelands in search of a better life in America and they found what they were looking for—an opportunity to succeed. Our country offers jobs and freedoms that are not easily accessible in other countries.

Hope

The United States of America is a beacon of hope for many. When you think of American tradition, hope may not be the first thing that comes to mind. When you think of America, you think of parades, fireworks, and apple pie. But hope has been a tradition of our country since it was founded.


Though hope is a less obvious theme, it is one of the most important. The Declaration of Independence enforced the notion that all men are born and created equal. Through even just the existence of a document like this, hope is instilled in most Americans that it will one day be achieved.

Strength

Strength is one of the main pillars of America. It is easy to see America’s dominance on a global scale as a function of our powerful military and governmental bodies.


That tradition of strength coupled with cooperation is a motif throughout American history. After World War II, the U.S leaned on global institutions for trade and security. This decision proved to give America a strong network of allies globally. We’re strong, but we also know how to work together for the greater good.


Strength and cooperation have historically been the key to American prosperity.

Freedom

America means freedom, and there are countless songs and poems that affirm this characteristic for the United States. Lee Greenwood says it best, with “I’m proud to be an American where at least I know I’m free and I won’t forget the men who died and gave that right to me. America is home of the free and brave.


Freedom means the power or right to act, speak, or think as one wants without hindrance or restraint. America has abided by the terms of freedom and is founded on that very construct.

The Historic Symbolism Of Red, White And Blue

The colors of America are ingrained into the identity of every American citizen. But why those colors? Red, white, and blue each have a very intentional meaning for our country. Let’s dive into what each color represents.

The Meaning Of Red

Red signifies hardiness and valor. It basically refers to the great courage our veterans display in the face of danger, especially in battle.


Some say that red represents the blood shed by patriots in battle. Red can also signify the readiness to sacrifice.

The Meaning Of White

White symbolizes purity and innocence, and pure intentions and ideals are at the core of the American belief system.

The Meaning Of Blue

Blue means vigilance, perseverance, and justice. Blue is meant to remind us as American citizens to keep a careful watch for possible danger or difficulties, and it also reminds us that we’ll be able to make it through those difficulties.


The blue in the American flag honors the importance of a just and fair country. Without justice, perseverance, and vigilance, America would not be the country we all know and love today.

What Do The Stars And Stripes Represent?

Let's not forget about the stars and stripes. The fifty white stars are there to stand for the fifty states in America. The last star was added to the flag design to represent Hawaii on July 4th, 1960.


There are seven red stripes and six white stripes on the American flag. These pay tribute to the original thirteen states (aka the former British colonies).


As a whole, these symbols have even more meaning. The stars are meant to represent the heavens, while the stripes on the flag are there to emulate light from the sun.

Consider Displaying The American Flag In Your Home

Are you proud to be an American? Would you like your family and loved ones to know that you support the United States? There is no better way to give your support and love to America than by displaying the American Flag in your own home.


Consider flying the flag off of a pole on your front porch. Or you can easily have an American flag framed and hung on a wall in your living room. You have plenty of opportunities when it comes to location.


Allegiance Flag Supply is a superb flag vendor based in The United States. We offer high-quality flags, as well as everything that you need to display one. Our flags are made from American sourced, first-run, 200 denier nylon, and each one is hand-crafted by American seamstresses. We ensure that our flags are durable enough to withstand harsh elements but lightweight enough to catch a breeze.

Takeaway

At its core, the American flag stands for pride, sacrifice, opportunity, hope, strength, and freedom. Flying an American flag at your home can serve as a reminder of these values and why you should integrate them into your life.


We hope that the next time you look at your American flag flying proudly in the breeze, you think of these core values and remember the people that came before you to make them possible. The flag serves as a unifier for our entire country and all of its citizens. Red, white and blue are not just colors; they are a signifier for all that America stands for.

Sources:

The Imperative of Personal Sacrifice, Today and During World War II | NY Times

Opportunity in America: What Does It Mean? | Aspen Institute

On topic: Hope as an American tradition | The Source | Washington University in St. Louis