The American flag continues to symbolize the freedom of the American people. Although the flag has lost its appeal with modern-day America, there was once a time where it was respected. Long-time Dodger player and voice, Rick Monday, exemplified that respect on the now famous day of April 25, 1976.
This day in Dodger History: Rick Monday saves the day! pic.twitter.com/H7l6b1V0nE
— Dodgers Nation (@DodgersNation) April 26, 2019
In 1976, Rick Monday was a Chicago Cub and he did not join the Dodgers until the following season in 1977. Still, the infamous event took place at Chavez Ravine 43 years ago.
“I would rather be remembered as someone who stood up and did something about something I felt strongly about, than as someone who just stood there and watched the parade go by.”
On that day, two protestors ran onto the field at Dodger Stadium in an attempt to burn the American flag. To some people the flag is a simple piece of cloth, but to others it symbolizes something greater. Monday realized that ‘something’ and took matters into his own hands by stripping the protestors of the flag and allowing security to take the arsonists away.
The quote above recounts Monday’s actions and provides his humble take on the situation.
The event marked a true act of modern-day patriotism and is one of the more infamous and historic moments in professional baseball over the last half-century that did not solely involve the game itself.
Something important to note regarding Rick Monday’s background is that in 1976, he was only four years removed from being in the Marine Reserves. The nation had just officially withdrawn from the Vietnam War as losers almost a year prior to the incident, but in the 1970s, a cultural revolution began. Nationalism saw a downturn in popularity and Monday’s actions have yet to be even close to being matched almost a half-century later.
What Rick Monday did on April 25, 1976 was bigger than baseball… Rick Monday, you made a great play.
[button link=”https://www.dodgersnation.com/jansen-concerns-free-verdugo-and-more-an-evening-with-mark-langill-episode-53-blue-heaven-podcast/2019/04/26/” type=”big” color=”red”] Podcast: Dodgers history with team historian Mark Langill[/button]