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Flag Day: Johnny Cash and “Ragged Old Flag” (Video)

Photo by Serfs Up! Roger Sales,Flickr

Today is Flag Day, a day set aside to recognize the symbol of our country. This video of patriotic images, paired with Johnny Cash’s version of “Ragged Old Flag” seems a fitting tribute to the Stars and Stripes.

It’s believed the idea of a “birthday” for the flag began in 1885, when a Wisconsin school teacher set aside the day for his pupils to recognize the significance of the American flag. The idea spread across the country for years until 1916, when President Woodrow Wilson established a proclamation recognizing the day.

While Flag Day was celebrated in several communities for years after that proclamation, it wasn’t until August 3rd, 1949 that President Harry S. Truman signed an act of Congress, designating June 14th of each year as Flag Day.

Many people don’t realize that there’s actually a Flag Code in this country. The laws relating to the Flag are part of the U.S. Code and refer to how the symbol is displayed, how it is raised and lowered, and how it’s disposed of properly. The V.F.W. lists these instructions for disposing of a flag….

1. The flag should be folded in its customary manner.
2. It is important that the fire be fairly large and of sufficient intensity to ensure complete burning of the flag.
3. Place the flag on the fire.
4. The individual(s) can come to attention, salute the flag, recite the Pledge of Allegiance and have a brief period of silent reflection.
5. After the flag is completely consumed, the fire should then be safely extinguished and the ashes buried.
6. Please make sure you are conforming to local/state fire codes or ordinances.

For more information on proper Flag etiquette, log onto the V.F.W.’s website. And enjoy this moving video with the distinctive voice of Johnny Cash!

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