Marc Leepson: Five myths about the American flag

HISTORY BUZZ: HISTORY NEWS RECAP

History Buzz

Source: WaPo, 6-10-11

Americans love our flag. We display it at concerts and stadiums to celebrate, and at times of national tragedy to show our resolve. We have our schoolchildren pledge allegiance to it; we have consecrated it in our national anthem; we have a holiday to honor it — Tuesday, in fact. Yet the iconography and history of the American flag, especially its early history, are infused with myth and misrepresentation. Here are five of the most prevalent myths.

1. Betsy Ross made the first American flag.

2. The red, white and blue colors symbolize American sacrifice.

3. The Pledge of Allegiance has long been recited in Congress and other governmental bodies.

4. It is illegal to burn the American flag.

5. It’s okay to wear a Stars and Stripes T-shirt.

Marc Leepson is the author of “Flag: An American Biography” and, most recently, “Lafayette: Lessons in Leadership From the Idealist General.”

Leave a comment

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: