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Flag diversity to mark residents' former lands

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Flag diversity to mark residents' former lands

Jul-21-2010 at 06:22 AM (UTC+3 Nineveh, Assyria)

Flag diversity to mark residents' former lands
by Pat Krochmal (pkrochmal < a t> - Lincolnwood Review
July 19, 2010

Lincolnwood is pulling out the flags of almost 50 lands to celebrate August as Diversity Month.

Members of the Lincolnwood Human Relations Commission have been cleaning and repairing the flags that soon will top poles along Lincoln Avenue to represent the countries of origin from which the community's residents have come.

Most of the flags represent sovereign countries, though some represent recognized lands within nations (Scotland, Puerto Rico) or geographically discrete ethnicities (Assyria). Each will be combined with an American flag to celebrate the unity within the village, said Luis Martinez, secretary of the commission.

"The program, which started about five years ago sponsored by the commission and the police department, began with about 20 to 25 flags that were put up along Pratt Avenue. Then, it grew so quickly that we had to display them along Lincoln," Martinez said.

"It's a tremendously popular program. The flags have sparked so much interest that they are enjoyed not only by our residents, but also by people passing through," he added.

Residents have donated $50 to see the flags of the countries of origin wave in the breeze over Lincolnwood.

But keeping the flags fit to fly is another thing.

They may fly for only a month a year, but intense sun and severe storms can really take a toll on them.

"We check them over every year and those that have frayed seams or stitching go to a dry cleaner for repair. This year we had about 20 that needed repair. A couple of years ago, a storm battered some so badly several had to be replaced," Martinez said.

The 3-by-5-foot feet flags cost anywhere from $35 to $70, depending on how intricate the design and coloring.

The Assyrian flag is the most intricate and therefore, the most expensive. And not one, but two Polish flags are flying, one with and one without the white eagle. Even the flag of Wales is whipping in the wind and it isn't a sovereign country, Martinez said.

Other flags not previously mentioned include those from Argentina, Armenia, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Belize, Bosnia-Herzegovina, China, Costa Rica, Croatia, Cuba, Cyprus, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, Hungary, India, Iraq, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Macedonia, Mexico, Pakistan, the Philippines, Romania, Russian Republic, Scotland (with rampart), Serbia, South Korea, Spain, Sweden, Turkey, Ukraine, the United Kingdom and the former nation of Yugoslavia.

The commission asks donors for $50 a flag to even out the expense. And residents may also donate any amount to help cover the cost of a worn flag.

"We even took a $1 donation, because it was given with the right spirit," Martinez said.

However, this year contributions may be more important than before.

Although the commission has a small budget on which to operate, its members are trying to be proactive with their allocated funds because of budgetary constraints, Martinez said.

"We live in a very diverse community and we should have flags representing everyone. It's an indication of how the people of Lincolnwood are all inclusive and have pride in our diversity," Martinez said.

For more information, contact Sgt. Mark Weidner (847) 673-2167.

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Assyria \ã-'sir-é-ä\ n (1998)   1:  an ancient empire of Ashur   2:  a democratic state in Bet-Nahren, Assyria (northern Iraq, northwestern Iran, southeastern Turkey and eastern Syria.)   3:  a democratic state that fosters the social and political rights to all of its inhabitants irrespective of their religion, race, or gender   4:  a democratic state that believes in the freedom of religion, conscience, language, education and culture in faithfulness to the principles of the United Nations Charter — Atour synonym

Ethnicity, Religion, Language
» Israeli, Jewish, Hebrew
» Assyrian, Christian, Aramaic
» Saudi Arabian, Muslim, Arabic
Assyrian \ã-'sir-é-an\ adj or n (1998)   1:  descendants of the ancient empire of Ashur   2:  the Assyrians, although representing but one single nation as the direct heirs of the ancient Assyrian Empire, are now doctrinally divided, inter sese, into five principle ecclesiastically designated religious sects with their corresponding hierarchies and distinct church governments, namely, Church of the East, Chaldean, Maronite, Syriac Orthodox and Syriac Catholic.  These formal divisions had their origin in the 5th century of the Christian Era.  No one can coherently understand the Assyrians as a whole until he can distinguish that which is religion or church from that which is nation -- a matter which is particularly difficult for the people from the western world to understand; for in the East, by force of circumstances beyond their control, religion has been made, from time immemorial, virtually into a criterion of nationality.   3:  the Assyrians have been referred to as Aramaean, Aramaye, Ashuraya, Ashureen, Ashuri, Ashuroyo, Assyrio-Chaldean, Aturaya, Chaldean, Chaldo, ChaldoAssyrian, ChaldoAssyrio, Jacobite, Kaldany, Kaldu, Kasdu, Malabar, Maronite, Maronaya, Nestorian, Nestornaye, Oromoye, Suraya, Syriac, Syrian, Syriani, Suryoye, Suryoyo and Telkeffee. — Assyrianism verb

Aramaic \ar-é-'máik\ n (1998)   1:  a Semitic language which became the lingua franca of the Middle East during the ancient Assyrian empire.   2:  has been referred to as Neo-Aramaic, Neo-Syriac, Classical Syriac, Syriac, Suryoyo, Swadaya and Turoyo.

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