Choose The Flag You Salute
If you haven't heard, Utah is on track to getting a new state flag. Now, if you're a “I like the way things are” type of person, and I'm guilty of that label, you might be thinking why are we changing this? I don't know that I have an answer for that. The current state flag seems to be ok, if not spectacular, and does the job a state flag is supposed to do which is.....well I'm not sure. Do we rally round the state flag? We don't pledge to it. I'm not aware of any requirement to salute it. Very few display it. And, I've never decided that I wanted to move to a state because well, “COOL flag!”
If you were to put up a display of our current state flag, along with similar looking but fake knock offs, I'm sure I would not pick the correct one. I remember blue and a beehive. I could pick it out if it was displayed with other state flags, so I'm not that oblivious, but I probably, again, would fail if it was among copycats. I couldn't even begin to guess the flags of Idaho, Illinois or Missouri, other states where I have domiciled at various times of my life. No, the only other state flag I could pick out would be the state I grew up in and that was California, and I do remember that flag because, well “COOL bear!” And because it had the words “California Republic.” Too bad California today has no idea what a republic is, but that's a discussion for another time.
According to Britannica.com a flag is “a piece of cloth, bunting, or similar material displaying the insignia of a sovereign state, a community, an organization, an armed force, an office, or an individual.” Moreover, flags have been used as means of communication, as a symbol of leadership, and as a source of inspiration and motivation. When we “plant a flag” in our lives it is often a symbolic reminder of an accomplishment we have had.
So, the powers that be here in the Beehive State have decided that our current symbol is not up to the task of modern times and it's time for a change. The More Than a Flag initiative has been underway for a year now under the direction of the Utah State Flag Task Force. Last spring, more than 7,000 designs were submitted from people all over the state. This summer, the Design Review Subcommittee, working with flag artists, narrowed that number down to 20 semifinalists. The task force has created different pop up exhibits featuring representations of the semifinalists that the public can view. One of those exhibits happens to be here in Cedar City. The semifinalists will be on display at the Beverly Taylor Sorenson Center for the Arts from September 22nd to October 5th. As you view the exhibit you will be able to express comments on your choice of design and why. If you can't make to the exhibit, you can do so here. Feedback will be accepted through October 5th.
So we get to give input on what our new state flag will look like, and that seems like a good opportunity. But, if your choice doesn't become our new state symbol, take heart. Look back on your life at all the “flags you have planted,” your accomplishments. No one chooses that design but yourself. Salute!