Singer Macy Gray says it’s time for the U.S. flag to be updated as it “no longer represents ALL of us.”
Writing for MarketWatch, the 53-year-old Grammy winner likened the current flag to the “tired” Confederate one, citing the insurrectionists who carried the Stars and Stripes when storming the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6.
“The American flag has been hijacked as code for a specific belief,” the “I Try” singer wrote in her June 17 op-ed. “God bless those believers, they can have it. Like the Confederate, it is tattered, dated, divisive and incorrect. It no longer represents democracy and freedom. It no longer represents ALL of us. It’s not fair to be forced to honor it. It’s time for a new flag.”
Gray went on to suggest a redesigned version, one with 52 stars — a nod to the statehood efforts in Washington, D.C. and Puerto Rico — in the “colors of ALL of us, your skin tone and mine, like the melanin scale,” with stripes that were “off-white.”
“The Smithsonian documents that the ‘white’ stripes represent purity and innocence,” Gray wrote. “America is great. It is beautiful. Pure, it ain’t. It is broken and in pieces.”
Gray suggested that the blue and red color palette remain, writing,”The blue square represents vigilance and perseverance; and the red stripes stand for valor. America is all of those things.”
As the musician — whose 2001 performance of the national anthem was roundly criticized — noted, the current flag was designed back in 1959 by 17-year-old student Bob Heft.
“In 2021, we have changed and it’s time for a reset, a transformation,” she concluded her piece. “One that represents all states and all of us.”
Promoting her op-ed and the reactions to it on social media, Gray has received supportive comments from stars including In the Heights star Daphne Rubin-Vega and Full House actress Jodie Sweetin.