Wednesday, June 14, 2006

The Eyes of the Nation are on Troy, NY*

So, in case you hadn’t heard (and I’m guessing you hadn’t), today is that most universally ignored of American holidays, Flag Day! Flag Day is celebrated (such as it is) on June 14th every year, because it was on that date in 1777 that the Second Continental Congress adopted the stars and stripes as the official flag of the…er…whatever exactly we were then (confederated colonies?). This makes June 14th as Flag Day completely logical, unlike some other patriotic holidays I might mention (stay tuned a few weeks from now for my post, “Why July 4 Shouldn’t Be America’s Birthday”).

And in honor of that well-scheduled day (seriously, I was kind of grasping at straws of what to say about Flag Day) I present this article in today’s Washington Post, which I’ve been recommending to everyone, based on its sheer weirdness. Here’s a snippet:

But in our flag there isn't that kind of hierarchy between the zones -- any sense of a lesser "this" grafted on top of a primary "that," or of a smaller "that" superseding an expanse of underlying "this-ness." There's just a feeling of redundant additivity -- a sense of "this-plus-that" which, in purely graphic terms, seems willful and arbitrary.
I mean, that’s just one of the most hilariously incomprehensible passages I’ve ever read. That said, I’m not mocking this article. I’m happy that the Post took a different slant (although it does seem they were as lacking for a Flag Day writing theme as I was), and at times, the article is at least mildly interesting.

What I love most, however, is the very fact that they are comparing the flag to modern art! This is sure to make some wingnut’s head explode. In fact, it’s even better in the print edition than it is on the website. In the print edition, on the front page of the Style section, above the fold, is a huge color picture of a flag with the headline under it, “A Grand Old Flag.” But when you unfold the paper, you see the rest of the headline, “And Very Modern Art.” I like to envision a Republican culture warrior seeing that page, and saying “Outstanding! It’s good that the liberal media can take one day to worship the flag,” and then unfolding the page. “Modern art? What? NOOOOOOOO!!!!!!”

Good times.

Also, the article says that wearing the American flag is illegal in DC. Apparently the outfit of Rep. Jean Schmidt (R, It’s-Too-Depressing-for-Me-to-Say) below, like the actions of Karl Rove, falls just short of indictability.

No word on whether flag enthusiast Rep. Schmidt
plans to call any veterans cowards today.

Happy Flag Day, everyone.

*Troy, NY, is the site of the nation’s largest Flag Day parade.

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