Today is National Flag Day.

It's a day to remember the history of America and teach Americanism.

"Our flag is a symbol of freedom, victory, challenge and pride," said Henry Desrosiers, director of the Carbon County Veterans Affairs office.

"It is a symbol that represents not only for who we are as a nation, but also for what we stand for and believe in. Because of this, it is a constant reminder of all of the men and women who served and who are still serving our country today, to guarantee our freedoms that we enjoy today."

He added a quote from G.K. Chesterton, which he said "speaks for itself."

"The true soldier fights not because he hates what's in front of him, but because he loves what's behind him."

Carbon County Commissioner Wayne Nothstein, chairman, reminds everyone to fly their American flag this weekend, for both Flag Day and Father's Day on Sunday.

He also urged everyone to remember to respect the flag at events and during the rendition of the national anthem.

"Several programs throughout the years noticed a decline in the respect for the flag," Nothstein said. "Please educate your youth about the proper etiquette on respecting the flag."

Paying respect

to the flag

Nothstein provided information from the County Commissioners Association of Pennsylvania about the proper way to pay respect to the flag during events.

It states, "According to the United States Code, during the rendition of the national anthem when the flag is displayed, all present except those in (military) uniform should stand at attention facing the flag with the right hand over the heart.

"Men not in uniform should remove their headdress with their right hand and hold it at the left shoulder, the hand being over the heart.

"Persons in uniform should render the military salute at the first note of the anthem and retain this position until the last note.

"When the flag is not displayed, those present should face toward the music and act in the same manner they would if the flag were displayed there.

"During the Pledge of Allegiance, everyone should be standing at attention facing the flag with the right hand over the heart. When not in uniform men should remove their headdress with their right hand and hold it at the left shoulder, the hand being over the heart. Persons in uniform should remain silent, face the flag and render the military salute."

The history

of Flag Day

According to The National Flag Day Foundation, on June 14, 1777, the "Stars and Stripes" were authorized by Congress as the official national symbol of the United States of America.

Over a century later, on June 14, 1885, Bernard J. Cigrand, a schoolteacher at Stony Hill School in Waubeka, Wisconsin, began the tradition of honoring the flag by assigning an essay to his students. He asked them to write about the flag and its significance to the country.

The tradition continued and Cigrand made efforts to make this day a national day to observe the flag.

In 1916, President Woodrow Wilson issued a proclamation calling for a nationwide observance of the flag, but it wasn't until 1949 when President Harry S. Truman signed an Act of Congress designating June 14 as National Flag Day.