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This is the American Flag

University of Virginia, Charlottesville VA


This is the American flag. It is a bit of bunting, and why is it that, when it is surrounded by the flags of all other nations, your eyes and mine turn first toward it and there is a warmth at our hearts such as we do not feel when we gaze on any other flag? It is not because of the beauty of its colors, for the flags of France and England, which hang on either side of it, have the same colors It is not because of its artistic beauty, for other flags are as artistic. It is because you and I see in that piece of bunting what we see in no other. It is not visible to the human eye, but it is to the aspiring soul.

We see in every stripe of red the blood which has been shed through the centuries by men and women who have sacrificed their lives for the idea of democracy; we see in every stripe of white the purity of the democratic ideal toward which all the world is tending; and in every star in its field of blue we see the hope of mankind that some day the democracy which that bit of bunting symbolizes shall permeate the lives of men and nations; and we love it because it enfolds our ideals of human freedom and justice.



Source: The History of Woman Suffrage, Volume V, p. 758.