Point of View: A Tribute to Old Glory
Special to Florida Baptist Witness

Article Date: Jul 4, 2014

She is Old Glory to us, but young in the annals of history. Yet, she is as familiar to others as she is to us. She is the most recognizable national symbol in the world. Old Glory, contrary to her detractors, is the earthly expression of a loft ideal—that all men are created equal and are endowed by their Creator with rights not often given by men to other men.

 Old Glory flies somewhere in virtually every nation of the world—atop embassies, as a standard over armed encampments, on ships that sail the seven seas and over fields of battle.
She flies high and proudly most of the time. Sometimes, she has been mired in the dirt, trampled underfoot, besmirched, bloodied, torn and wrapped around the bodies of the slain. She rests with men and women of valor beneath the waves of every ocean and the soil of every continent.
She has known honor and dishonor, glory and vainglory, reputation and disrepute, love and hate. She has been praised and reviled. She bears the luster of noble deeds and sadly, at times, the blot of infamy.
Old Glory has no life of her own. No breath, no pulse. Yet she takes on the life and pulse of the ideals and dreams of her people and patriots.
She is a badge of courage, a blaze in the darkness, the watchword of liberty, the hallmark of democracy, a beacon to the tired and downtrodden.
She is indeed, Old Glory. Long and proudly may she wave.
Larry Stracener is a 50-year member of First Baptist Church of Winter Park. He is the son of the late Dr. W.G. Stracener, a pastor and former editor of the Witness.

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