Macy Gray calls for new US flag: “Tattered, dated, divisive, and incorrect… not fair to be forced to honor it’

Grammy award winning singer Macy Gray is facing backlash after calling for the American flag to be redesigned in a MarketWatch op-ed marking Juneteenth.

Gray compared the American flag to the Confederate battle flag, which she said was “crafted as a symbol of opposition to the abolishment of slavery,” and called Old Glory “tattered, dated, divisive, and incorrect.”

The singer goes on to argue that the flag no longer represents democracy and freedom, nor does it represent all Americans. She claimed it is “not fair to be forced to honor” the flag. 

Gray’s argument against the current flag is two fold. She first recalled the use of the American flag on January 6th by those who stormed the U.S. Capitol in drawing the comparison to the Confederate flag. She said, “[T]he memo was received: the American flag is its replacement.” 

The second prong of Gray’s argument is that the stars only represent the 50 states and excludes the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. She says that statehood has been denied for both under the assumption that “D.C. reps would be African-American and Puerto Rican reps would be Hispanic.”

The singer concludes that the ultimate assumption is that these elected officials would be Democratic. 

The symbolism behind the current American flag holds lasting values that are intended to represent all Americans. The white symbolizes purity and innocence, the blue represents vigilance and perseverance; and the red stands for valor according to the Smithsonian.

Gray proposes a new flag with 52 stars, a nod to the aforementioned territories, and instead of the stars remaining white, they would span the colors of the melanin scale. She calls for the stripes to be offwhite and for everything else to remain the same.

Photo: Macy Gray

“What if the stripes were OFF-white? What if there were 52 stars to include D.C. and Puerto Rico? What if the stars were the colors of ALL of us — your skin tone and mine — like the melanin scale? The blue square represents vigilance and perseverance; and the red stripes stand for valor,” she wrote. “America is all of those things. So, what if those elements on the flag remained? What if the flag looked like this?”

Many took to Twitter to fire back at the idea.

One user voiced his disdain for the idea, “Absolutely not. Hard pass. It will proudly be presented on the front of my home until the day I perish. And I will continue to uphold the life, liberty and pursuit of happiness for which it stands for ALL people.”

Another wrote that America would not change the flag because of some celebrity opinion. He went on, saying that what the flag means has never changed, but the failure of people to live up to its meaning has. 

“The flag wants to be referred to ‘They’ now” wrote another.

One user tactfully criticized Gray’s design, “Purely from a flag design perspective, that’s a terrible redesign. Three colors tops, simple shapes with no complex or difficult-to-draw designs. I’ll grant off-white stripes would be interesting, but a field of 52 shades of stars and illustrations in the stripes? Please just no”. 

It is worth noting that some users agreed with the star, but the vast majority saw through the ridiculousness.

I fully endorse Macy Gray‘s call for a new flag. Those who identify with the new order should be separated from Americans. It goes beyond party, ethnicity, and race. There are two nations (at least) occupying this polity. Perhaps it’s time for national divorce” writes one user. 

Most posts pointed out the hilarity of it all, while another user aptly asked, “Who has “Macy Gray writes an op-ed for MarketWatch” on their 2021 bingo card?”

Aside from writing op-eds that are roundly considered out of touch by American readers, Gray and her band The California Jet Club, released their debut single, “Thinking of You” this year.

Here are a few more responses from Twitter that tie back to Juneteenth:

 

Kay Apfel

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