Don’t Tread on the District

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It’s June, so that means Neighbors United for DC Statehood will again be hosting its photo contest celebrating the DC flag and our pride in the District, while also raising awareness about our desire to have our star added to the US flag. Residents from around the District are encouraged to take photos with the DC flag to highlight civic pride in who we are and where we live.

On Flag Day, June 14, the photos will be posted on our website, just as in 2013, 2014, and 2015. We ask that you share your photo, and our post with all of the photos, with others via email, Twitter, Facebook, and other outlets with family, friends, and members of Congress around the country, to highlight that we are Americans just like them, with the exception of being denied equal political rights.

This isn’t just a fun way to highlight civic pride and to demonstrate our thirst to be equal partners in American democracy. This is a doggone contest to see who can take the best photos and be recognized with a snazzy certificate of recognition for your efforts! Make your photos fun, serious, wacky, or whatever else strikes your fancy, but make them compelling.

We are proud of our city-state and need to show the nation who we are. When they know that 680,000 of their neighbors are disenfranchised, they will be compelled to join our struggle for equality via statehood.

Please join this effort by taking a photo with the DC flag at your home, school, place of employment, special place in your neighborhood, or somewhere we’d never expect. Creativity is encouraged over conformity!

Contest Award Categories
Awards will be given for the following categories (all photos need to incorporate the DC flag):

  • Best Ward. Given to the councilmember with the highest volume of individual photo tweets with their ward’s hashtag (#Ward6, #Ward7, etc.).
  • Best Group. Given to the community group with the best group photo with the DC flag.
  • Best Elected Official. Given to the elected official with the dopest and most compelling photo.
  • Best Agency. Given to the DC government agency (feds can try too) with the best photo.
  • Best Business. Given to the business with the best photo promoting its business and the DC flag.
  • Artistic Expression. Given to the person/group with the most artistic photo.
  • Best Pet. Given to the pet(owner) with the cutest, quirkiest, or most compelling photo of a non-human living thing.
  • Best Friend in a State. Given to the person/group from one of the 50 states with the best photo imploring their representative/senators to support DC statehood.
  • Best Hands Off DC. Given to the person/group with the best photo symbolizing the effort to keep congressional hands off DC.
  • Best Statehood Shot. Given to the person/group with the best photo symbolic of the fight for statehood.

How to Submit Photos
Submit as many photos as you like. Just make sure they incorporate the DC flag. You can submit photos in two ways:

  1. Email (before June 10). Send photos to unitedforstatehood@gmail.com by 11:59 p.m. on June 10, and let us know which category/ies you’re competing for. Additionally, please share details about the group/people that took the photos (names etc.). The more information, the better. By emailing us, you give us permission to post the photo publicly.
  2. Social media (on Flag Day, June 14). Post your photo(s) on Twitter and Facebook with the #DCFlagDay and #DCStatehood hashtags as well as the link to our photo contest webpage.

Judging and Winners
Neighbors United for DC Statehood will judge submissions, and the winners will be announced on Wednesday, June 14. All winners will receive a unique certificate printed on the finest paper a copy store can provide and that we can afford. In addition to having multiple category winners, there will be one grand prize winner who will receive the esteemed DC Flag Day trophy.

This contest should be a fun and interactive way to highlight civic pride and let the country know what we want and deserve: statehood.

Josh Burch is a member of Neighbors United for DC Statehood (www.the51st.org), a group of residents who believe that community organizing and strategic congressional outreach are the foundation and driving force behind the DC statehood movement. He can be found at josh@unitedforstatehood.com or followed at @JBurchDC.