Double Negative Flag Burning

January 26, 2009


I saw this image on Fox News tonight of a couple of Arabs burning the U.S. flag while holding it upside down. Of course, the talking heads were getting all freaked out at such an image. But the first thing I thought was, Hmm. Doesn’t that cancel itself out?

Sure, when Americans fly the flag upside down it’s supposed to be a distress call. When protesters fly the flag upside down they are saying, “Down with America!” Same goes for burning the flag, which means you hate what that flag currently stands for.

But what does it mean when you burn a flag that is upside down. Seems to me you are saying, I hate what the upside down flag stands for. And since the upside down flag stands for “Down with America,” when you are burning it, aren’t you really saying, “Up with America!”?

I’m just saying.



One comment

  1. I don’t know, sir. I mean, a double-negative is kind of a challenge for a lot of people to figure out. I mean, yeah, it’s elitist and all, but have you noticed the state of grammar lately?

    And no, I’m not lily-white in this, either. Hell, I couldn’t tell you the parts of speech. I mean, I can think of most of the basics if I need to make a joke, which means I have a special affectation for gerunds (extra credit if anyone can tell me where I got that), but don’t ever actually ask me what they are.

    Of course, maybe they’re really devious, and instead of a double negative, they’re trying to square their disapproval, which I think amounts to the same thing, since it’s an even number, anyway, but still, it’s like, magnified or inflated … exponentially.

    Whether exponential hatred is supposed to frighten or confuse us, though, I couldn’t tell you.

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