"a symbol of freedom and patriotism" this and other definitions are inaccurate ways to define the term "american flag". The best way to explain the flag is - a symbol of the sale of freedom(s) by democracy to the average gullable American citizen through taxes, tariffs, and such. With the money raised by selling such freedoms, redneck presidents (such as George W. Bush), can make more weapons and sell them to 3rd world countries and attack them later on for being a threat to american interests.
The american flag was intended to support the new freedom of a new country, in 1776. A reason why we broke from the british centurys ago was for the inapproriate taxation of americans. Today we still have taxes and a lot of it goes to wars and weapons of mass destruction which will lead to further economic difficulties in other foreign countries