Rust, White, and Blue: Flag Post 2022

older camper trailer painted in red, white, and blue
Red, white, and blue camper, Dravosburg

If there is a best flag to represent America in 2022, it may well be this one. Fifteen or twenty feet tall, the big metal version of the stars & bars fills a huge section of exterior wall on the Dura-Bond Pipe facility in McKeesport.

The image is all there, but it’s seen better days. The blue field behind the flag’s fifty stars is faded and streaked; red stripes are all but gone entirely. In their void, scratchy, rusty striations seem to be eating Old Glory from the inside out.

large American flag on warehouse wall with red stripes faded
Rust, white, and blue. Warehouse flag, Dura-Bond Pipe, McKeesport

If that’s not a perfect analog for the current state of our American union, I don’t know what is. America is still here, we see its shape and form, still recognize its power and pretense, but it seems to be disappearing—or is actively being destroyed—right in front of our eyes, in ways we never imagined.

We’ll not do any great opining here—you’ve got blow-out mattress sales and sun-soaked cookouts to get to. Maybe, though, in between all those hot dogs and foul balls, consider what you can actively do—and not just on the Internet—to preserve American democracy between now and next Independence Day.

Enjoy the flags (and flag-like things). Happy Independence Day, y’all!

cement stair steps painted red, white, and blue
Flag steps, Hazelwood
brick wall painted with mural of American flag
This is YOUR FLAG. VFW, Tyrone, PA
storefront painted like American flag
Flag building. Kaps & Taps, Duryea, PA
grave marker with large engraved American flag
The flag’s not dead! Flag grave, Richand Cemetery, Dravosburg
building siding painted like the American flag, but with no stars in the blue field
No stars/blank slate. Hancock, MD
decorative garden gnomes painted like the American flag
The land of the free and the home of the gnomes. Flag gnomes, Highland Park
bird house painted red, white, and blue
Free bird(s)! Flag bird house, Polish Hill
box truck painted like American flag
The jokes write themselves. Shred America, the “Paper Shredding Patriots,” Strip District
homemade wooden American flag on front porch of house
Barbed wire stars. Porch flag, Perry Hilltop
front gate with eagle ornament painted like American flag
American eagle. Ambridge
wooden painted cutout of Uncle Sam in front of house
Uncle Sam with bird, butterfly, and electric meter. Glassport
front porch with handmade wooden flag
Porch flag, Stanton Heights
crushed beer can with American flag design
Ain’t that America. Beer can flag, trampled underfoot, South Side

If that ain’t enough flags for you, our sister blog The Portland Orbit has their own flag post out today. Let’s go, America!

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