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Metro councilman calls for revision of Nashville flag

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Posted at 9:16 PM, Jan 28, 2021
and last updated 2021-01-28 23:48:04-05

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — Can you describe what the Nashville flag looks like? Chances are you’ve never given it a second thought. But if you take a look, one Metro council member says you’ll find some puzzling things on it.

The city's flag is mostly made up of Nashville's official seal, which you can find in more places than you might think: on a Metro Health advisory, on the flag above Nashville government buildings, and even on every Metro Police badge in town.

On that seal is a scene that includes most prominently a Native American holding a skull.

"It’s just kind of weird," said Councilman Colby Sledge, who tweeted Wednesday that it's time for a new official flag for Nashville. "It’s really strange that it doesn’t really depict a historical scenario."

Indeed, while Nashville’s own website digs into the origins of the imagery of a Native American holding a skull, the exact history and meaning behind it is not known.

"There are other elements of the seal itself where there’s a fleur-de-lis, but we don’t really know why."

The fleur-de-lis is a symbol traditionally associated with other cities like New Orleans or Louisville. The flag also includes a tobacco leaf and an eagle.

Sledge suggests that a new flag can be a collaborative effort that celebrates the people who live in Nashville.

"We have so many creative things in the city, we have so many other things we are known for," Sledge said. "The fact that Nashville has a flag that doesn’t have anything to do with music is very strange."

Some may argue there could be more important things the city could turn its attention to, but after the year that Nashville has gone through, Sledge says a project that unites the city could be just what it needs.

"We could all bring our talents together and do something that would be really great for the city," Sledge said.