ANALYSIS – We still don’t know if it was an intentional call for help, a prank, or a broken clip as Senate officials claim, but the American flag did spend some time flying upside down over the U.S. Capitol.
And considering it flew over the Democrat-led Senate building, the meaning and symbolism weren’t lost on many Americans.
A tweet by Rogan O’Handley, a political activist whose Twitter handle is DC_Draino, posted on May 16, 2023, showed a photo of the U.S. flag outside the Capitol flying upside down.
He tweeted: “NEW: US flag currently flying upside down over Senate building signaling distress and needing rescue.”
DC_Draino added: “Some believe it was flipped after Sen. Fetterman spoke with the sophistication of a drunk toddler in a hearing today.”
The tweet was viewed 4.3 million times by Thursday.
Under the U.S. Flag Code, turning the flag upside down should never be done “except as a signal of dire distress in instances of extreme danger to life or property.”
Others noted that Congress, and indeed the entire country, is in distress and needs emergency assistance.
The upside-down flag display has also been used as a means of protest, mostly by conservatives.
Newsweek confirmed that the photo is real and the flag was at one point upside down, but reported that an official at the Capitol blamed the upside down flag on a broken clip, adding that the problem was later corrected.
However, many on Twitter questioned the explanation. One asked: “If it was a broken clip and the wind was blowing as it clearly is in the photo, why would it not appear to be attached by only one clip?”
“If it was caused because a ‘clip broke’ wouldn’t the flag just streamer in the wind instead of still fluttering like a flag?” another user suggested.
DC_Draino also responded to the official explanation reported by Newsweek, and mocked those who bought it at face value:
Yes I know the article says a “clip broke” but the flag wouldn’t fly like that if it was hanging by 1 clip
Guarantee the reply guys in my comments taking the government’s PR answer at face value are vaccinated & boosted
The picture is clearly showing something different.
However, as symbolic and justified it may be to fly the American flag upside down over the Democrat-controlled Senate, this was still likely a case of human error and broken clip.
Still, maybe it should become a regular thing until the Republicans retake the Senate.
America is definitely in emergency distress.
Opinions expressed by contributors do not necessarily reflect the views of Great America News Desk.