Monday, September 8, 2008

The Flag Pin Controversy

Here is a quote from a blog that I just found. To read the rest of this post, please go to the wonderfully-named Don't Tell the Children.

I am fascinated by this outbreak of American flag pins in men's lapels. What does it mean? How did the movement get started? I suppose it must be a means of identification: as in, "I am an American citizen" as opposed to "I am an Egyptian citizen" and that is helpful to dispel confusion. What happens if you are a man, in a suit, and don't have an American flag pin displayed in the lapel? I have heard, although I did not see this, that a reporter on TV asked a candidate why he was not wearing an American flag pin - ( I heard that this reporter was that sweet-faced George Stephanopolis). The implication must be that if one does not consistently wear a flag pin, one must be a terrorist sympathizer. Is this what George Stephanopolis meant?

...Wearing ribbons and other insignia to show your backing of a particular cause (usually health related) is not new but the negative connotation of this one (Where is your flagpin?") is new. We are all Americans, so there is nothing identifying those wearing them from the rest of us unless they are "super-Americans." Not since Nazi Germany has the wearing of a badge, or not wearing a badge, meant trouble. Remember how brave it was for the King of Denmark to wear a yellow star to show that he and his country were one,and if the Nazis took any Jews they would have to take him?? That was a lapel pin that meant something.

Postscript from clairz: I was interested to find that the story of King Christian of Denmark wearing the yellow star in support of his country's Jews is not true in its specifics, although true in spirit, according to In checking further, I found that the children's book by Carmen Agra Deedy that I am familiar with is named The Yellow Star: The Legend of King Christian X of Denmark.

1 comment:

Sylvia K said...

Great post! And I'll look at that site! I've gotten so fed up with this silliness over a lapel pin! What on earth does this say about us? That we have pretty petty minds as far as I can see. Thanks, Clariz!