School struggles to explain Nazi flag hanging in window

Governor Thomas Johnson High School in Frederick, Maryland, sported new colors during a recent basketball game: the Nazi Swastika. School officials have apologized for the flag, hung in plain sight in a school window, and promised to find out who put it there.

Serenity Bush Moore:

Last night at one of the biggest games in FCPS, Thomas Johnson High School had this hateful flag prominently displayed in the window in the front of the school where everyone entered! As a graduate of FCPS, I am so regularly disappointed by their poor decisions. The idea that a school system has made a decision to exist in the destructiveness and incapacity dimensions of the cultural continuum demonstrates a total inability to protect all students. Please miss me with it’s a social studies class. What culturally proficient educator has a “life” size Nazi flag in their tool kit and then has the audacity to hang it OVER THEIR CLASSROOM WINDOW IN THE FRONT OF THE SCHOOL BUILDING BY THE MAIN ENTRANCE. Staff and administrative parking is directly in front of this window, so this was seen by a school leader. Irresponsibility and privilege at its highest levels.

You just never know when it's time for a WWII history class in America. Read the rest

The flags of Russia's regional governments are amazing

From Zheleznogorsk's flag depicting a bear splitting an atom (the city started as a plutonium mining-town) (yours for $60!) to Domnovskoye's stark eagle claw to Syaskelevskoe's drunken bull to Khoroshyovo-Mnyovniki's crudely drawn MS-Paint-style proud beaver, the flags of Russia's states, cities, towns and districts are pretty fabulous; Weird Russia has a giant trawl through them. (Thanks, Ilya!) Read the rest

A new flag for Mississippi: the Mighty Magnolia

Chase Quarterman writes, "In early 2016, I began working on a graphic design thesis project that explored Mississippi history and symbolism, relating to a re-design of the Mississippi flag (I'm a native of Jackson, MS). After two years of research, survey questions, and design development, I have created a flag for your consideration: The Mighty Magnolia Flag. The final design is simple, but full of symbolism that is unique to the state of Mississippi. I have collaborated on a short animation that details these unique symbolic attributes." Read the rest

Watch 193 pride flags stop a bullet

Fondation Émergence created a great PSA they call the Pride Shield, where 193 pride flags (one for each country) show that together we can end the worldwide epidemic of violence against sex and gender minorities. Read the rest

The world's average flag

Technically, the flag you see here is the mode of the world's national flags, calculated by first reducing the amount of colors to match heraldic norms. The mean average flag is more subtly detailed, but also just a blur; the median average flag is a bland gray box. Check out the rest, for each continent.

Means were calculated by first converting from sRGB to linear RGB. Modes were calculated by first quantizing to the following heraldic colors: Or, Argent, Azure, Gules, Purpure, Sable, Vert, Tenné, Orange and Bleu Celeste. Omitted heraldic colors include Murrey and Sanguine (as they are very similar to Gules and Purpure) and Cendrée and Carnation (as they are barely used). Medians were calculated by first converting to greyscale using BT.601 luma transform.

Read the rest

Seattle person confuses Norwegian flag with Confederate flag

Bestselling true crime author Rebecca Morris spotted a flag like the one seen above flying outside one of her Seattle neighbor's homes. She tipped off the Seattle Times, stating:

Suddenly there is a Confederate flag flying in front of a house in my Greenwood neighborhood. It is at the north-east corner of 92nd and Palatine, just a block west of 92nd and Greenwood Ave N. I would love to know what this ‘means’ … but of course don’t want to knock on their door. Maybe others in the area are flying the flag? Maybe it’s a story? Thank you.

Reporter Erik Lacitis investigated.

“That’s a Norwegian flag,” said the Norwegian-American man who lives at the home. “It’s been up there since the start of the Olympics.”

(Time) Read the rest

This political sorting hat will assign you a nice flag

According to Politiscales, a political Myers-Briggs type questionnaire and sorting hat, I'm some kind of happy hippy anarchist with no time for terfs. I often found the questions vague or open to interpretation, so would moderate answers that might be more assertively stated down the pub. It coughed up this nice purple flag, too. I've never seen it before and Google Images doesn't know what it represents, but it's rather suggestive of the sexier regions of the left.

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Site turns any image into an animated waving flag

Flag Waver accepts uploaded images or URLs and turns them into an on-screen waving flag. There are advanced options for wind and hoisting! Sadly, you cannot export or save animations. Read the rest

Texas lawmaker introduces bill chastising Texans for using the Chilean flag emoji

Texas and Chile have remarkably similar flags (though Chile got theirs first, by a matter of decades) and Texas doesn't have a Unicode-defined emoji for its flag (just a sprinkling of proprietary ones that do not cross platforms gracefully), so Texans have taken to using the Chilean flag emoji as a shorthand for the longhorn state. Read the rest

Nebraska flag, flying upside down at State Capitol without notice, may get redesign

Nebraska State Sen. Burke Harr is pushing for a redesign of his state's flag because, well, it sucks. From the Omaha World-Herald:

For 10 days, the state flag, which is hoisted over the State Capitol’s west side when lawmakers are in session, flew upside down.

“Nobody noticed it,” State Sen. Burke Harr told members of the Legislature’s Executive Board. “It took someone drawing it to my attention before it was changed...”

An effort in 2002 to develop a new flag design with the public’s help, however, died after critics called it a blow to the state’s heritage.

Harr brushed off criticism from earlier this month that the state has more pressing issues to deal with, saying that the lawmakers can take a look at the state flag while addressing the looming budget deficit, the troubled Department of Correctional Services and other areas of concern.

“We can walk and chew gum at the same time,” he said.

And for more on vexillology, don't miss this classic episode of the 99% Invisible podcast: "Vexillology Revisited: Fixing the Worst Civic Flag Designs in America" Read the rest

Did China's flagmaking hub predict the 2016 election?

Maybe next presidential election, it would behoove pollsters to check in with flagmakers of Yiwu, China's main manufacturing center for flags exported to America. One manufacturer told a Chinese video site he knew Trump would win because they were exporting so many more Trump flags. Read the rest

New Zealand votes to keep British flag in their flag

57% of New Zealand voters prefer the current design (r) to the proposed replacement (l), reports the BBC. One can't help but think of it more as a judgment on the new design than an explicit preference for the colonial original (which is almost identical to Australia's flag.)

More than two million ballots were sent in and from fairly early on it appeared the status quo was leading the way. One telephone survey in late March, however, found 59% of people condemned the whole NZ$23m ($17.4m; £12.3m) process as "a distraction and a waste of money". The result on 24 March was close: 1,200,003 for no change, 915,008 for change. (Prime Minister) Mr Key took it on the chin, calling on New Zealanders to "embrace" their flag.

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Lifeguard flies rainbow flag, idiotic complaints follow

On July 4, Zach Hupp, a lifeguard on Carolina Beach, NC, flew a rainbow flag from his post. Hupp says someone immediately complained to another lifeguard, concerned "that they thought because I was flying that flag that I would only rescue gay people," and someone else posted on the town's Facebook page that she "didn't know how to explain this one to the tourists who asked us about it." Read the rest

South Carolina: Confederate flag will be removed from Statehouse on Friday, July 10 at 10am

It's about time.

South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley, just now: “"The Confederate flag is coming off the South Carolina Statehouse. Tomorrow morning at 10:00am, we will see the Confederate Flag come down,” she added, “with dignity.” Read the rest

The flag we'll use to colonize the galaxy

Here is Oskar Pernefeldt's design for "The International Flag of Planet Earth." Also good for UN subagencies, atheist headstones, and the random output of logo generators for startups with inappropriately Asian names.

The mockup art is brilliantly Ballardian. Who does not appreciate the mounting excitement of being in an empty committee room when no-one else knows you're there?

Become a citizen! Do you want to know more?

Mars needs rimming.

On the plus side, it's not as if children will actually have to draw these things in the future.

Here's a how to!

Here is Eddie Izzard, explaining the cunning use of flags.

Here is the flag that we'll use to colonize the galaxy.

Read the rest

"Could These Redesigned State Flags Bring America Together?"

Kyle VanHemert, at Wired, wonders if Ed Mitchell's designs for new state flags could help Americans appreciate the union.

In many cases, Mitchell’s simple flags are a good deal less exciting than their odd forebears. And it’s hard not to miss some of the more unusual visual miscellanea that the new designs do away with. Still, Mitchell sees value in the cohesion. “I would personally prefer to adhere to the idea of keeping our state and national symbolism current and meaningful,” he says, “which does not mean abandoning history but celebrating progress.”

tl;dr: No. Read the rest

Irish flags OK again in Florida

The idiots who run Atlantic Beach, Florida, banned the flying of non-US flags, and even cited a Greek restaurant for displaying one. They have been told. [Reuters] Read the rest