September 2, 2020

Recently someone posted a question on Facebook. The question was “Would you fly an American flag in your yard?”

My answer was an assured YES!

Do you have a flag flying in your yard? Do you have any doubts or reservations about flying the flag publicly?

Almost as long as I can remember, there has been a flag flying in front or back of the house. No matter where or whatever house in which I lived.
As a young girl, I lived in an Embassy which naturally flew an American flag. Inside the compound, it sat in an oval piece of grass in front of the buildings which included the Embassy Residence and the Chancery.

My parents did not have a flag at their house in Washington DC. Still, when I first visited my boyfriend Charley, at his parents house, I quickly saw that his family proudly flew a flag. They raised the flag every morning and took it down every evening, folding it properly into a three-pointed packet. Later my parents bought a summer house in Rhode Island, and there they flew an American flag out front. It flew from a high flagpole that was rooted in the bright blue hydrangeas along a little wall by the pea gravel driveway.

When my husband and I moved to the country from Washington DC, one of the first improvements we made on our property in The Plains was to place a flagpole near the stone wall that marked the property’s edge at that time. We flew that flag with great pride. Our neighbor Julian Griffith was touched to see that “this city couple” had installed a flagpole fully in his view, and he came to tell us so. Originally he had been somewhat curt with us and far from cordial. Our relations improved significantly after this event. We became good friends. He later allowed us to buy his land, giving them life tenancy of their house.

Many years have passed, and I am nearing 80, but I fly a flag at my new house, Loftlands. The flag and flagpole was already there when I moved in. It was just not a very big flag. So I gave the original flag to one of my grandsons and replaced it with one twice the size. That large flag flies fully unfurled. We sit on top of a hill here in Earlysville. It gives me great joy to see it, red, white, and blue gleaming in the bright sunlight. It does not take too much of a breeze to set it flying out to the side and actively waving.

The flag is a symbol of the great country in which I live. Having lived outside of the USA, I am more appreciative than some. I have seen the difference. We are so fortunate here in this country, and the freedom of movement and freedom of expression is so total compared to many other countries. I wish that those who criticize this country and find fault with its present and it’s past can see more clearly exactly what the founders meant for this country. Old Glory was a symbol of freedom from the beginning.

The people who settled this country were hardy. They did not ask for favors and they did not accept charity. They were proud. And they were reasonably autonomous because the King was across the big water and did not have time or inclination to police the people.

Later that began to change, and the people who were used to being their own bosses rebelled in their hearts. And finally, they openly rebelled against the King and the mother country. They formed their own country, and they worked out a government system that has never been improved upon.

Fly the flag if you are able. We need to reinforce the idea of greatness in this wonderful country. I am proud to be an American.

Copyright©. 2020 Bonnie B. Matheson

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