Flag Of Hate – Time To Take Paxil

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Captain Liar has a post which is entitled, “Red Ensign: Flag Of Hate”

As someone who doesn’t put much worth in any kind of symbolism, whether it be flags, crosses, rings, swastikas, sunwheels, buddha statues, and anything else that people tend to worship or get some emotional feeling from while observing, holding, or having, I am quite amused.

I might put some “symbol” on my website or even carry it about my person, or look at it on the wall, because for me it provides some aesthetic pleasure. Other than that, symbols of any sort have no meaning to me. Only those who virge on some insane tendencies would put “meaning” into a symbol. If I happen to like the look of a swastika on my wall, and it suits my decore, then why should anyone else project their own thoughts onto why I might have such a thing on my wall?

To be honest, I don’t like the swastika. I have no patterns of any swastikas that I know of. I only use that as an example. I will admit that I do have a Red Hand Of Ulster flag somewhere in storage, along with a Union Jack somewhere. And probably a few pins that include Red Ensigns in my pin collection. I like the Red Hand Of Ulster for its aesthetics, just as in some cases, I even like the tri-colours of the Republic of Ireland. But as symbols, they mean nothing to me.

I even own a Celtic Cross or two. I think I probably have a claddagh ring somewhere as well. But I’m not sure if I gave that away on some romantic and sensual night or not.

Oh! I also own a Confederate Flag, I just remembered! I bought that as a souvenir on a trip to Alabama about 15 years ago. I also own one of those horse forehead decoration things, of which I forget the name of, that is made out of brass and was worn by a horse that one of my friend’s ancestors rode that came over to Northern Ireland and fought the Catholic King James II from Holland. It’s at least 410 years old.

What gets me is how so many people somehow have either an emotional attachment or an emotional hatred for a symbol. What exactly is a symbol? Well, it’s nothing more than a pattern, that is drawn, painted, carved, weaved, knitted, sewn, moulded, or made in hot fires in a metal smith’s shop. That’s all a symbol is. It’s just a pattern of some sort.

I look upon a flag, and I choose to see colours and whatever else is portrayed pictorially, and decide whether I like it from an aesthetic point of view. You however, may see some other deeper meaning, but that is your own projection of YOUR thoughts upon this pattern. Thoughts you have learned and decided to give meaning to. You don’t HAVE to give meaning however, to that pattern.

The symbol will only bother you, or inspire you, or evoke any feeling in you, to the degree you choose to have some emotional attachment to that symbol, whether negative or positive. That is up to you. The symbol itself cannot have any meaning except to that which you attach to it.

If you choose to see the Red Ensign as a flag of hate, it’s totally and utterly in your mind where the hate and meaning exists. The flag and pattern itself is just that. It cannot evoke anything, other than what you allow it to evoke. It is your choice to think about a pattern or symbol the way you do. You might as well look at a huge piece of granite, and have some emotional feeling about some natural symbol it might have, as look at a red ensign, or a swastika, or any other symbol, and “feel” some emotion upon looking at it. That emotion or thought is all in your own head, and is quite religious if it evokes some strong emotion. Even a weak emotion is religious.

How can a red ensign be a “flag of hate” other than to the degree that your mind decides to associate it as such? Perhaps it is those who do all this “associating” with symbols that need the most psychological help of all. Paxil might help, if it is becoming a major obsessive thing with you to allow symbols to control your mind and emotions.

See your doctor soon. There is help available.

4 thoughts on “Flag Of Hate – Time To Take Paxil”

  1. Hi Ian. I thought we should both give Flynn a break and take this discussion in-house. As a self-stated fan of logic, how can you find logic in this post of yours? Humans – all humans – invest belief in symbols. It is simply one of the ways the human mind works. It invents shortcuts, and these symbols are almost like hotkeys for our brains. No one is immune to this. Show me a misty harbour and I think back to my home province, to family, to friendship, etc. It is not a conscious thing, it merely is. We can’t help it. And some symbols do have their own baggage (as I believe I said to you before). You can’t put a swastika on your wall and reasonably expect people to have no reaction to it. And you can’t reasonably claim that your placing it there is a value-neutral action. You are, at an absolute minimum, expressing through this symbol your right to provoke comment. That is your right, too, just as others have a right to question the values of someone who would use that particular symbol. (I know, you are using the swatika as a hyperbole.) Whether or not you agree with Simon (and really, “Captain Liar” is not only unfair, it is not terribly creative), his initial purpose was to inform those who join the Red Ensign brigade that there is a real faction of haters who embrace that same symbol. True, he has gone on from there, but that is his right. I have seen the extreme division in the U.S. blogophere, whre each side only refers to the other with utter contempt. I would like to see the Canadian blogosphere avoid that. (Full disclosure: I am often as guilty of this as anyone, but I am working on it.)

  2. Timmy, thank you for your thoughtful comments. I will take some time to respond to them, as it seems could possibly be looking at this from a different angle. Whilst what you say is true, it doesn’t have to be true. As an individual, I am responsible for my own emotions. No symbol can “incite” me ever! But let me think more about this in light of what you have posted. Regarding Simon and my calling him Captain Liar. I’m sorry, but he has outright lied on his blog, and even after bringing it to his attention, he refused to remove the falsehood until just about an hour ago. It’s been there for a good week or so. He stated, “Ian has gone crazy! He is now proclaiming his support for Zundel!” An utter outright lie. He also lied in another post of his about me “refusing to acknowledge” something about a hate website. This was another misleading falsehood, that he still has yet to recant.

  3. Fair enough, Ian. I should have known you two have a bit of history of which I was not aware. And while we aren’t running newspapers here, we should as principled persons take seriously the accuracy of our blogs, especially when singling out other bloggers by name. I enjoy your blog, despite our positions on the political spectrum. I’m interested in engaging debate, and that can come from all quarters. Thanks for your reply.

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