Today we celebrate one of the first symbols of this great country, the American Flag. Commissioned by the first Congressional Flag Act in 1777, the American flag has continued to evolve over the years as our nation grew. The liberty it stands for, however, remains constant. So does AMVETS’ commitment to serve the veterans who protected that liberty.
Since 1775, generations of Americans, in times of turmoil and tension as well as periods of peace, have raised their right hands to take an oath. They have taken that oath, not to a king, and not to a flag alone, but to the ideals our flag represents.
Yesterday we were ready, from Lexington and Concord to Gettysburg, and from Normandy to the Persian Gulf. Today we are ready to continue the mission of protecting our citizens and ensuring all women and men are free to exercise their innate rights as human beings. Tomorrow, too, we will be ready. Whenever the time, wherever the mission, whatever the challenge, you can always count on America’s Armed Forces.
To veterans throughout American history, Old Glory has served as a symbol of their service and as a continuing testimony that this service was worthwhile. Our flag is also the symbol of a nation comprised of people dedicated to freedom and independence.
In the words of President Woodrow Wilson, “Old Glory, this flag which we honor and under which we serve is the emblem of our unity, our power, our thoughts and purpose as a nation.”
May we honor her always and the respect values she represents. God bless you all. And God bless America.