Resolution To Honor Blind Citizens, American History Receives Committee Approval

In March, the House approved legislation to honor Tennessee’s blind citizens as well as American history by passing House Joint Resolution 88.

As approved, the legislation calls for a braille American flag to be displayed in the new Cordell Hull legislative office building, which the General Assembly is set to move into later this year.

Randolph Cabral, founder of the Kansas Braille Transcription Institute, created the braille flag to honor his father, Jesus Sanchez Cabral. Jesus Sanchez Cabral was a decorated U.S. Army Air Corps veteran who served the United States during World War II. Glaucoma robbed him of his sight 10 years before his death. It also hampered Cabral’s ability to post and fly the American flag on his front porch, a duty he cherished as a patriotic veteran.

The braille American flag serves as a valuable teaching and learning aid for instructing blind students about its place in American history. It is composed of braille figures in the upper left corner that represent the stars of the 50 states. They are arranged in nine rows of alternating clusters. The long smooth horizontal lines represent the red stripes. Each red stripe is lined with the appropriate braille dots to indicate the stripe’s color. The long raised textured areas on the flag represent the white stripes. They are also lined with the appropriate braille dots to indicate the stripe’s color.

The American braille flag is a powerful symbol for more than 30 million blind and low vision Americans. In 2008, the United States Congress authorized its placement at Arlington National Cemetery as a tribute to blind veterans. It is displayed by thousands of sighted and blind civilians, veterans, hospitals, memorial parks, elected officials, schools for the blind, and many other places.

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