Without question, the most popular US historical flag is the Revolutionary War-era Gadsden Flag. This unforgettable flag with its striking image of a coiled rattlesnake and the warning of "Don't Tread On Me" is the most in-demand and sought after flag on the market today. This beautiful yellow flag is steeped in American history and remains a powerful symbol of individualism and defiance. It is a flag that needs further examination and study in our schools as it was the most frequently displayed flag in early America. For whatever reason a person chooses to fly this flag, it should be done so with the utmost respect and pride. It is a flag that one should not be embarrassed to fly. This flag is part of our history and should be flown with pride.
Here are a few good reasons to fly the Gadsden Flag. Raising the flag on your residential flagpole or simply attached to a wall-mounted flag holder will allow any neighbor or passerby to see the flag. If their curiosity is aroused, this affords you the unique opportunity to explain the history and significance behind the flag. There is a very good chance that they have seen this yellow flag before, but don't know what it's called or where it came from. Here's your window.
You can give them a brief history lesson on the flag and explain to them how our Founding Fathers displayed the flag as a symbol of resistance to the British Crown in America. You can inform them of the metaphor of the rattlesnake and how it relates to the vigilance of the American Patriot. The phrase "Don't Tread On Me" is somewhat self-explanatory, however, you can describe to them how our founders were fighting for the protection of their God-given Natural Rights, rights which cannot be taken away by any government, but are unalienable and permanent. Who knows, you may even convert a few people to the belief in limited government and a return to a Constitutionally bound federal government.
By raising the Gadsden flag, along with other popular tea party flags, you are also sending a very powerful message to politicians at all levels of government: federal , state and local. You are letting them know, in very clear terms, that you are keeping an eye on them and intend on holding them accountable for their actions. The image of a coiled rattlesnake should be an ominous warning to any politician who sees it. It means we are watching their every move, and if they attempt to extinguish or "tread" upon on any of our individual rights established in our founding documents we will remember them at the ballot box.
People should not be discouraged when someone in the media mocks the Tea Party Movement or anyone who might proudly display the Gadsden Flag. Stand up for what you believe and show your pride without fear. Remember, every time someone mocks you, it gives you the opportunity to convert another person to the ideology of limited government and individual responsibility. Instead of getting angry, use this opportunity to have a civil debate and hopefully, though not always, minds can be changed.