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OUR U.S. FLAG

 

On April 4, 1818, Congress established the number of stripes at seven red and six white, and provided the addition of one star for each new state. The thirteen stripes represent the original 13 colonies. The 50 star flag has been in use since July 4, 1960 when Hawaii officially joined the union.

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As Eddy and I drive through the Boulder Ridge neighborhood during our Phoenix Neighborhood Patrol schedule we notice how many homes display the American Flag, either on a pole or mounted on the home.  We commented to each other how beautiful it is.

Boulder Ridge residents are very patriotic.  This is evident in the number of flags flying in the wind on our windswept desert.  Presently there are 57 flags being displayed daily.   Other significant displays of patriotism are shown by other methods, smaller flags and various other types of displays.

We noticed that there are about 10 flag poles that are lonesome and could use a flag to fill the void.  Contact John Frishcosy or Curtis Faulk for assistance in mounting the flag on the flag pole.

Residents are commended and encouraged to display their love of country and maintain their flags in a serviceable condition.  Flags that are no longer usable should be folded appropriately and deposited in the Veteran's container at the mailboxes.

Submitted by: Curtis Faulk (Boulder Ridge Resident)

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Submitted by: Curtis Faulk

(Boulder Ridge Resident)

The American Flag is flown at half staff or half mast on specific days or remembrance.  Other days may be designated by the President of State Governors as appropriate.

For flags that cannot be lowered, such as on homes, attaching a Black Mourning Ribbon the the top of the flag is an acceptable alternative.  The Ribbon should be the same width as the stripe on the flag and the same length as the flag.

Mark your calendar with these important dates to display the Flag at half staff or half mast:

  • Patriot Day, Wednesday September 11th, Sunrise to Sunset

  • National Fallen Firefighters Day, Sunday October 6, Sunrise to Sunset

  • Pearl Harbor Remembrance, Saturday December 7th, Sunrise to Sunset.

Have you wondered about the person who runs or bicycles up and down the streets of Boulder Ridge? She is sometimes sparkling, sometimes flashy and just recently has been seen sporting a white beard and red Santa hat. This dedicated and loyal American always displays her most valuable accessory – a tattered and torn American flag. Please meet Kathy O’Gara, and Bill William her husband of 22 years.

 

These two native Brooklyn New Yorkers moved to Boulder Ridge in August, 2015. Bill had been a dispatcher for a delivery service, and Kathy worked in a Manhattan Bank for 28 years. These avid runners belonged to the Shore Road Striders and participated in many 5K runs. After witnessing first hand the traumatic and horrifying events of 9/11/2001, they began carrying a United States flag during each of their runs, and this practice continues to this very day. Kathy and Bill have joined 5K events in Boston, Virginia Beach, and nearer to Phoenix in Laughlin, Anthem, Westgate and Payson to name a few, always displaying “Old Glory”. Kathy loves her daily trip (or trips) around Boulder Ridge and has a ritual of touching many block walls and several boulders as she winds around the park.

 

People make her happy by smiling, waving, honking their horn and giving her a thumbs up! This upbeat and friendly lady is a great addition to our Boulder Ridge family. Now everyone should know her name and the story behind her demonstration of honor and respect for our great country. She has a favorite saying – “I don’t carry the Flag – the Flag carries me.” You may call her “The Flag Lady”, but also, please call her                !

Kathy O'Gara

Red Skelton Pledge Of Allegiance (click arrow to play video) courtesy of: https://archive.org/details/PledgeOfAllegiance

PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE

On December 28, 1945, Congress formally recognized the Pledge of Allegiance in its almost-current form.  Here are 5 things that are interesting about the Pledge.

THE ORIGINAL VERSION OF THE PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE DID NOT INCLUDE THE WORDS "UNDER GOD"

The patriotic oath - attributed to a Baptist minister named Francis Bellamy and published in a children's magazine in September 1892 to commemorate the 400th anniversary of Christopher Columbus voyage to America - read: "I PLEDGE ALLEGIANCE TO MY FLAG AND TO THE REPUBLIC FOR WHICH IT STANDS, ONE NATION, INDIVISIBLE, WITH LIBERTY AND JUSTICE FOR ALL."  Congress added "UNDER GOD" to the Pledge in 1954 - during the Cold War.  Many members of Congress reportedly wanted to emphasize the distinctions between the United States and the officially atheistic Soviet Union.

IT USED TO BE LEGAL TO EXPEL STUDENTS FOR NOT SAYING THE PLEDGE

Until 1943, school children could be expelled for not saying the Pledge in school.  That issue was resolved in the 1943 Supreme Court decision West Virginia State Board of Education v. Barnette, which ruled that the right to not speak is equally protected under the First Amendment as the right to free speech.  Unfortunately, some schools still prefer to kick students out, such as happened to a high school senior in Houston, Texas, in 2017, who merely refused to stand during the Pledge.  As of September 2018, a District Court Judge in Texas has refused to dismiss the case, but the Texas Attorney General has intervened and told the student she must stand.  Her attorney has said he'd be willing to go before the Supreme Court.

THE ORIGINAL PLEDGE INCLUDED A VERY DIFFERENT SALUTE

But that salute was eliminated for a very good reason.  Nowadays people put their right hand over their heart, but before 1942, the salute used with the Pledge was a straight right arm raised at a diagonal angel, palm down, fingers extended together and out.  Picture that for a moment and you're likely get why it fell out of favor starting in the 1030's - it's now better known as the salute used by the Nazis.  The straight-arm salute was known in the U.S. as the Bellamy Salute, after Francis Bellamy, who believed the salute would be a good non-military gesture, even though some sources still call it a military salute.  The current hand-over-heart salute is included in the U.S. Flag Code.

SCHOOL CHILDREN FIRST RECITED THE PLEDGE ON A HOLIDAY

School children in America recited the Pledge of Allegiance for the first time on October 12, 1892, which was the 400th anniversary of the Voyage of Columbus.  It was on April 25, 1893 that adults first recited the Pledge in Navesink, New Jersey, while attending a national pole and flag-raising ceremony.  The recommendation that the Pledge be used in schools was in 1894 at a convention held by a women's auxiliary of the Grand Army of the Republic.  By 1905, school flag laws had been passed in 19 stated.

THE PLEDGE WASN'T USED IN THE U.S. SENATE UNTIL 1999

Although the Pledge of Allegiance was recognized by the federal Government many years earlier, it wasn't recited in the U.S. House of Representatives before taking up its daily business until September 13, 1988.  The U.S. Senate followed suit eleven years later.  The pledge is recited by members of the House and Senate following the morning prayer led by the chaplain.

Submitted by: Curtis Faulk, Boulder Ridge Resident

U.S. Flag Etiquette, Rules, and Guidelines

HONORING THE FLAG CODE

On June 22, 1942, Congress passed a joint resolution, later amended on December 22, 1942, that encompassed what has come to be known as the U.S. Flag Code. 

Perhaps the most important guideline involves how citizens should behave around the Stars and Stripes: The flag of the United States is the emblem of our identity as a sovereign nation, which the United States of America has been for more than 200 years.

Therefore, members of the armed services and veterans are asked to stand at attention and salute when their flag is passing in a parade or being hoisted or lowered; civilians should place their right hand over their heart.

WHEN TO DISPLAY THE AMERICAN FLAG:

The flag is a symbol of respect, honor, and patriotism. It may be displayed on any day of the year according to the following guidelines:

  • The flag should not be displayed on days when the weather is inclement.

  • The custom is to display the flag only from sunrise to sunset on flagstaffs in the open, but it may be displayed at night—if illuminated—to produce a patriotic effect.

HOW NOT TO DISPLAY THE AMERICAN FLAG:

The flag and its likeness should be treated with respect. Its image should not be cheapened or tarnished by improper use.

  • The flag should not be dipped to any person or thing, including government officials—even the President.

  • The flag should never be displayed with the union (stars) down, unless as a signal of dire distress.

  • The flag should never touch anything beneath it, such as the ground, the floor, water, or merchandise.

  • The flag should never be carried flat or horizontally, but always aloft and free.

  • The flag should never be fastened, displayed, used, or stored so that it might be easily torn, soiled, or damaged in any way.

  • The flag should never be used as covering for a ceiling.

  • The flag should never have anything placed on it.

  • The flag should never be used for any advertising purpose, nor embroidered on cushions or handkerchiefs, printed on paper napkins or boxes, nor used as any portion of a costume.

 

HOISTING AND LOWERING THE FLAG:

  • The flag should be hoisted briskly and lowered ceremoniously.

  • When flown at half-staff, the flag should be first hoisted to the peak for an instant and then lowered to half-staff position. It should again be raised to the peak before it is lowered for the day. Half-staff is one-half the distance between the top and bottom of the staff. The flag must be flown at half-staff on all buildings on the death of any officer listed below, for the period indicated:

    • For the President or a former President: 30 days from the date of death.

    • For the Vice President, the Chief Justice or a retired Chief Justice of the United States, or the Speaker of the House of Representatives: 10 days from the day of death.

    • For an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court, a member of the Cabinet, a former Vice President, the President pro tempore of the Senate, the Majority Leader of the House of Representatives, the Minority Leader of the House of Representatives:From the day of death until interment.

    • For a United States Senator, Representative, Delegate, or the Resident Commissioner from the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico: the flag should be flown in the metropolitan area of the District of Columbia, on the day of death and on the following day; in the state, congressional district, territory, or commonwealth of such Senator, Representative, Delegate, or Commissioner, from the day of death until interment.

    • For a Governor: Within the state, territory, or possession, from the day of death until interment.

 

GENERAL GUIDELINES FOR DISPLAYING THE FLAG:

  • When the flag is hung vertically on a wall, window, or door, the Union (blue section) should be to the observer’s left. When the flag is hung either horizontally or vertically against a wall, the Union should be to the observer’s left.

  • In a procession, the American flag should be to the right (the flag’s own right) of any other flag or, if in a line of other flags, in front of the center of that line.

DISPLAYING THE AMERICAN FLAG ALONGSIDE OTHER FLAGS:

  • In the United States, no other flag should be placed above the American flag or, if they are to be placed on the same level, to the right of the American flag.

  • The United Nations flag may not be displayed above or in a position of superior prominence to the United States flag except at United Nations Headquarters.

  • The flag, when displayed with another against a wall—both from crossed staffs—should be on the right (the flag’s own right), and its staff should be in front of the other staff.

  • The American flag should be at the center and the highest point when displayed with a group of state flags.

  • When flags of states, cities, etc., are flown on the same halyard, the American flag should be at the peak.

  • When flags of two or more nations are displayed, they are to be flown from separate staffs of the same height, and the American flag should be hoisted first and lowered last.

 

HOW TO PROPERLY DISPOSE OF AN AMERICAN FLAG:

  • When the flag is in such condition that it is no longer a fitting emblem, it should be destroyed in a dignified and ceremonious fashion, preferably by burning.

  • Most American Legion posts will conduct an annual ceremony, often on Flag Day (June 14) to retire old or worn flags; contact your local chapter if you are not able to dispose of the flag yourself. You could also ask your local Boy Scouts or Girl Scouts troops about retiring your flag.

  • When displayed from a staff projecting from a building, the union should be at the peak of the staff.

  • When the flag is displayed otherwise than by being flown from a staff, it should be displayed flat, whether indoors or out; or so suspended that its folds fall as freely as though the flag were staffed.

  • When displayed over a street, the flag should be suspended vertically with the union to the north in an east and west street, or to the east in a north and south street.

  • On a platform, the flag should be above and behind the speaker, with the union uppermost and to the observer’s left.

  • When displayed from a staff in a church or auditorium, the flag should occupy the position of honor and be placed at the speaker’s right as he faces the audience.

  • When the flag is used to cover a casket, the union should be at the head and over the left shoulder.

DISPLAYING THE AMERICAN FLAG ON A VEHICLE:

 

  • The flag should not be displayed on a float except from a staff, nor draped over the hood, top, sides, or back of a vehicle.

  • When the flag is displayed on a vehicle, the staff should be fixed firmly to the chassis.

 

Iwo Jima Flag Raising

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Boulder 

Ridge

Displays 

The Flag

Proudly!

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Tenor.com

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Background image courtesy of Pixabay

 

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