On the eve of Barbados 44th Independence I want to speak about our flag and what it should mean to you. What does it mean to you since its adoption as our symbol of independence on November 30, 1966?
Flags stir up emotions in us, that few other symbols can and some persons see it as a national insult to desecrate a nation`s flag.
The blue color in the flag of Barbados represents the sea, and gold symbolizes the golden sands of the island, while the broken trident centered represents the break from our colonial past.
Flag etiquette and flags have been a symbol of human achievement since ancient times. Flags have been used to lead armies to victory and to claim ownership of vast territories. For every Barbadian that sovereign piece of cloth with its blue,gold and black colors of Barbados should be the embodiment of Pride and Industry. It`s more than a colorful piece of cloth we call a flag but is a symbol of who we are, what we believe in and where we belong.
Our flag represents a living country and is itself considered a living thing. Thus it’s an accepted fact that people respect the symbolism of the flag, whether it is your country’s flag or another country’s flag. How many of you unknowingly and knowingly disrespect the highest symbol of our sovereignty? Thus here are some tips on how to and not to treat our Flag.
Your country’s flag should never be flown above another national flag on the same staff as this would suggest superiority or conversely, inferiority of one flag, or nation over another. A country’s flag should never be allowed to be dragged along the ground. If a country’s flag becomes tattered or faded, it should be removed and replaced with a new flag. Due care and consideration must be taken to ensure that the flag is always flown the correct way up. If a country’s flag is in such a condition that it is no longer a fitting emblem of display, it should be destroyed in a dignified way, preferably by burning in private with all due care and respect.
Our country’s flag should be hoisted first and lowered last. The United Nations uses alphabetical order when presenting a national flag. The United Nations flag etiquette ensures that no one country’s flag has precedence over another country’s flag. Flag etiquette is very strict and it is essential that flag protocols and rules are followed correctly. Let all of us from today give our National Anthem and Flag the same respect as you would give when a visiting other countries.
Next week I will tell you about bad english potatoes and 1 litre juices