We’ve asked a dozen locals about the flag and it’s meaning. I have to applaud both the creativity and the apologetic admission of ignorance! So I took to google… now I can explain it to the locals.
the three (X) crosses are the St Andrews Cross. This diagonal cross is also referred to as a saltire. Americans associate with railroad crossings. The cross is an 18th century heraldic sign.
the black stripe symbolizes the Amstel River and the St Andrews Crosses were to ward off the Black Death (plaque), fire and floods but there is debate. The crosses also are said to represent the 3 tenants of the Dutch "Valiant, Steadfast, Compassionate“.
Many visitors as well as locals thought the x’s referred to red light district but the flag is way older than the oldest organized profession.
The flag was officially adopted on 5 February 1975 although it was already in use before this date, seen for example on the cover of the day programme of the 1928 Summer Olympics held in Amsterdam!
So now you know…
it made me think about the American Flag. If a visitor asked you, could you tell them what it stands for?
The national flag of the United States of America(often referred to as the American flag, or the U.S.flag)
#consists of thirteen equal horizontal stripes of red (top and bottom)
alternating with white,
with a blue rectangle in the "union” bearing fifty small, white, five-pointed stars .
The 50 stars on the flag represent the 50 U.S. states,
and the 13 stripes represent the thirteen British coloniesthat declared independence from Great Britain, and became the first states in the U.S.
Nicknames for the flag include the Stars and Stripes and the Star-Spangled Banner.