by Daniel D Lion
The American Flag is the most important symbolic representation of the United States of America. The United Nations flies the flags of all countries outside the headquarters reflecting these as the most symbolic item a country can have. Our flag is flown around the world everyday on foreign embassies, warships, and even in combat zones.
When our flag was originally created in the 1776, it had 13 stripes and stars representing the original colonies. We created this flag to break away from Great Britain and start our own country because our forefathers felt we should have certain rights and freedoms governing our own country. Hundreds and thousands of our brothers and sisters have fought and died protecting this flag and what it represents to this day.
When they die overseas their coffins come home wrapped in the American flag. This is significant because they come home wrapped in the flag they died fighting for. During Memorial Day a tiny flag is put on every grave on every veteran’s grave to show that we are still flying high and proud. No matter how sad I feel sometimes it’s a definitely a sense of pride when just driving down the road and seeing the American Flag flying.
In Amy Strycula’s untitled image she maintains this reflection of sacrifice and pride. The purpose behind this picture is to describe bloodshed in war. This sets the tone as a serious situation because it shows blood everywhere on the flag and citizens, who happen to be in the military. In 2008, the image reflects history because this is how our country was founded.
We engaged in war against England to earn our freedom to start our own country and the current situation at hand for the United States of America. Since 2001, we have embarked upon war in Afghanistan and in Iraq. Most policy makers don’t sacrifice for their country, but it’s just the average men and women who make sacrifices and die for this country to protect our way of life. This image reflects that.
The audience for this image is limited to anyone that can understand the context of the picture. Some younger generations might just think it’s cool because it has blood on some green Army men. For other generations that have been around for wars, this really hits home because this directly impacted their lives.
Over the last two decades, we have battled terrorism on two major fronts, Iraq and Afghanistan. The author wants to let her audience know that our citizens are dying and shedding blood to protect that flag they stand behind. Some of the soldiers are laying in a pool of blood and others are still standing. This is because they will fight until they are physically unable to carry out the fight.
There are strong pathos or emotions about this picture because it represents pain, agony and even guilt about what the soldiers are going through even though it’s an all-volunteer force. She is trying to play on the public’s sympathy about them dying for life, liberty and freedom. Why did she use toy figures without faces instead of human faces?
We have such a diversity of ethnic cultures and backgrounds in our country it’s hard to put one face on it. By using green toy soldiers this will resonate to a broader sense or deeper emotion because it’s just not plastic. These are real life men and women. Some of the blood covered the stars because we represents the 50 states. Our military comes from all 50 states and territory’s to serve the same purpose and shed the same blood. This might cause some people to fear about joining the military or it might give them a sense of pride to go join the cause. Somebody might get a sense of pride or might take it for granted when looking at the flag because they have been sheltered from the horrific acts of violence that happen around the world.
America is relatively a peaceful place, and we don’t have to worry about a bomb going off by just walking down the street. This could show the pain that our country has gone through just to get where we are today with our freedoms. Without knowing her personal feelings, we can’t tell if she is silently protesting the wars, or showing a way just depicting a way of presenting bloodshed in a different form. This picture brought so much emotion and memories that I live with every day because some of my friends have paid the ultimate sacrifice or have been injured. No matter what though this flag represents freedom and we are proud to fly it high every day.
The logos behind the image is clear to veterans at least because we are biased towards the view of this image. There is truth behind her image because death is part of war. It’s just not the American flag; there are badly injured troops protecting our flag. Everyone knows that can be a consequence of joining the military that they can be called up to duty to serve overseas. We have freedom of speech so this is her right to describe her feeling through her art of photography.
The artist is showing her ethos through her work. She is a photographer and speaking through her images. Images don’t need poetry or any kind of lyrics to go with it because they speak for themselves.
When looking at the picture, I don’t question her integrity or her character because there is so much credibility to that work because troops die for Old Glory when fighting on foreign soil. Every time I stand for the National Anthem I think of the brothers and sisters that have fought for America past, present and the future generations to carry this great nation forward.
In conclusion we as American’s are mostly proud as a culture and society. We have freedoms that most countries can only dream about. We have to make sacrifices as a society to protect them from our enemies at all cost. Even when we return home, we continue to fight the war mentally in our heads and sacrifice our way of living. This is what we call the invisible war. We are hated all around the world for what we represent and what we believe in. For the last couple hundred years we have spilled blood for this country while our flag has ridden into battle with us. It’s a symbol of freedom that hopefully continues for a long time.
We must not forget about those who shed blood and sacrificed everything for those 50 white stars and those 13 stripes. Strycula’s image does just that through attention to the casualties of war and the symbol our nation so strongly stands on.
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