#3 Symbol of Justice, Freedom, and Hope: The American Flag

Hi, I’m Olivia, and today’s Happy Nugget!
comes from the American Flag. Every star and stripe, every red, white, and
blue thread woven with the magnificent history of the United States of America. In 1620, a ship called the Mayflower, bringing
the Pilgrim fathers and mothers to land on Plymouth Rock had the white flag of England
with the red cross of St. George at the top of its foremast. In 1765, after the French and Indian War,
England passed the Stamp Act on its American colonies. The Americans were not allowed to be members
of the English law making bodies, so they rebelled saying the Stamp Act was “taxation
without representation.” Then England passed a little “three-pence-a-pound
tax on tea.” The Americans knew that if they paid this
tax, it wouldn’t be long before the English government taxed their coffee, sugar, or anything
they wanted, so they rebelled and the Boston Tea Party came about. War with England ensued and the individual
colonies united for the defense of all. The rattlesnake was seized upon as the emblem
of the American colonies. One flag in early 1776 had thirteen red and
white stripes representing the original colonies with a snake stretched diagonally across it,
its forked tongue up, the words “Don’t Tread on Me” printed on the lowest white
stripe. The Americans began to look upon the English
King as a tyrant and all the flags had an aggressive tone. There were many who wanted to make it a banner
of hate. It was more than luck that kept our forefathers
from adopting the rattlesnake as the standard. It was their true hearts, which made them adopt
the starry emblem we know so well as the banner of freedom. The growth of the flag was gradual and slow. Initially, it had thirteen red and white stripes,
but instead of a blue field with stars, it had the British flag, showing that even then
the American colonists were not thinking of separating from England. The British were convinced the “American
Peasants” as they thought of them, would yield, but the American people were no longer
satisfied to fight for rights which they found, to their sorrow, the British would never allow. But could they fight England and win? They were brave and angry enough to try. It could prove to be a long struggle, but
freedom was worth fighting and dying for. So another flag was needed, a true flag of
liberty. In June of 1776, a few weeks before the great
Declaration of Independence was approved by the Continental Congress, a committee led
by General George Washington called on Mrs. Betsy Ross, a young widow, to make the historic
banner. Washington and his colleagues had a distinct idea of what they wanted. Washington wrote, “We take the star from
Heaven, the red from our Mother Country, separating it by white stripes, showing that we have
separated from her, and the white stripes shall go down to posterity representing liberty.” The flag had thirteen red and white stripes
with a field of blue in the top left corner, with a constellation of thirteen white stars
in a circle. As there is no end to a circle, the Americans hoped
the nation they were trying to form would live on until the end of time. And that flag remained for eighteen years
until new states were added to the union, and the shape of the flag we’ve grown to
love today, emerged. A little less than a century later in 1861,
the first flag to be raised in a grammar school was unfurled. From a wonderful book called, “The Story of
the American Flag,” first published in 1910, author Wayne Whipple writes, “So what better
knowledge can be taught in American schools than lessons in patriotism—true love of
the Flag which means so much to every man, woman and child in the United States? It means a great deal to foreigners, too,
for people of other lands are flocking to our shores by millions, because of the liberty
which all Americans enjoy. They appreciate our freedom the more because
they have been denied it. Sometimes we do not value our greatest gifts
and blessings, just because we have always had them, but if we had to do without them
a while we would soon learn what they mean to us, as, when we have been deprived of water
for days, we appreciate what a real blessing a good drink of water is. So with freedom. It is sometimes stated that the truest and
most loyal citizens of the United States are those who or whose fathers, have come from
distant lands where they have been deprived of the liberties, which seem as common in America
as the water we drink or the air we breathe.” The freedom we enjoy in the United States
of America is a privilege. It comes because our forefathers and mothers
bore a great sacrifice on the battlefield and on the home front to carve this freedom
for us. The American flag is a symbol of self-reliance,
courage, sacrifice, independence, and justice to cherish and respect because so many have
bled red, white, and blue to ensure our freedom. And that’s today’s Happy Nugget! If you enjoyed this video please like it,
share it, and subscribe. As always, I link below the video anything
I recommend. I hope you have a wonderful day. Thanks for watching. See you next time.

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