Most Americans fly the Star-Spangled Banner. That is true for young as well as old, Democrats as well as Republicans, the well educated and the least educated. In fact, of all the demographic categories in the recent Pew Research Center study -- sex, race, age, party, region, education -- the only category in which most people did not report flying the flag was African-Americans.
In academic world, though, flag-flying is rare. Yet recently, three of my colleagues - liberal Democrats, every one -- installed brackets and bought flags. As one of my neighbors explained, "patriotic liberals" like him were not going to leave the flag, or the country, to their opponents. In fact, I came by one morning and he was outside, shirtless, picking up the paper, cup of coffee in hand, with his flag flying from his front porch, and his motorcycle parked invitingly in his front yard. I told him the scene looked like the cover of a Toby Keith album (he guffawed).
This Independence Day morning I had my eldest put our flag up, joining in the hallowed ritual of the Fourth of July that most Americans do - together.