• Morgan Fagg

Some red flags raised here

Today Unionists in Northern Ireland complained about the BBC’s usage of the Irish flag on a graphic to represent Northern Ireland and while I might agree that the BBC should get such basic information right, I also panicked and thought, what does their flag actually look like and I presumed I would recognise it as soon as I saw it.

I like the BBC was wrong about that.

Flags mean so much to so many people that it is best not to raise any red flags here as we have seen a rise in nationalism in recent years. Donald Trump molests flags on stage as children in Spain decorate their school bags with Spanish flags and many of them that I have seen, have worn VOX bracelets around their wrists which are bracelets with the Spanish flag and a VOX logo on it.

Flag etiquette would suggest to me that you never write something on a flag but many red flags will have to be raised about our usage of flags today.

On Saint Patrick’s Day two years ago while helping a teacher to educate the school on different saints, I suggested that teachers could wear green on the day and some teachers dressed in green dresses while I just wore an Alfa Romeo t-shirt with a four-leaf clover on it.

An American teacher was disappointed I didn’t have something Irish but I was happy with my subtle four-leaf clover and whenever I can, I wear OSSO t-shirts which I love wearing.

Comfy and affordable this brand has a giant clover on the front and I picked some green colours for the design. People immediately see the green t-shirt and make the Irish connection but OSSO is a brand of Spanish motorbikes so I think it is a more acceptable way to shout out, I am Irish while in Spain.

Spanish flags are everywhere I go and I think it dilutes the brand when you see them on bin-trucks and diggers. To me, a flag should be risen up high and the ultimate flag has to be Neil Armstrong’s flag on the moon.

Maybe if Northern Ireland had a space agency called NISA we would watch their rockets landing on the Moon or Mars where no one would mistake the Northern Ireland flag for the Irish tricolour.

In saying that, what is the flag in Northern Ireland? Isn’t it the Union Jack? Is it the Ulster Banner (Used 1953-1972) or the Saint Patrick’s flag which makes up the red X in the Union Jack's diagonal stripes.

Isn’t it a pity that the Union Flag represents England, Ireland, Scotland, and Northern Ireland but not Wales? Seriously we have the Scottish flag in blue and the Saint George’s flag in red and white but no Welsh dragon on it.

The reason I believe is that Wales was already part of England when the current Union Jack was adopted in 1801.

Speaking of Wales, isn’t it strange that England has a unicorn on its coat of arms and the Welsh have a dragon on their flag. If I was living in Northern Ireland, I’d adopt the Game of Thrones logo.

Seriously, how can the BBC not know what symbol to use?

The Confederate Flag is being taken down in America as others raise the Swastica and even in Spain, as various flags are being flown at different times, I have seen Irish people playing GAA tournaments on Saint Patrick’s Day without much fuss made about flags while everyone in an Irish bar that night was dancing around in tricolours. Where did they find Irish flags in Spain?

Flags confuse me and so does the usage of them and I am sure we will see many more complaints and confusion in the future when Brexit forces questions about borders and nationalism and I wonder if the Welsh will wonder where their dragon is on the Union Jack. Maybe Unionists will wonder why they are represented by the Union Jack and not a flag from Northern Ireland.

Some red flags raised here.


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