Flagpoles Unite the World, In Space and on Earth

The implications of hanging a flag from a flag pole is often underestimated. Flags can be a powerful symbol, a means of voicing interests and affiliations. They are a battle cry for schools, a memorial in grief, and a brand in commerce. They showcase allegiances to bands and singers, flaunt ancestral crests, and prove the fortitude of a community organization. Truckers attach flags to their carriages, soccer fans wear them as capes during competitions, aunties knit them while sitting on porches, and astronauts wave them in space. As a whole, flag poles are icons of cultural diversity and union.

The world is not a vampire, as much as the Smashing Pumpkins would like us to believe so. But it is a cultural melting pot, a potpourri of many peoples from many lands. In America especially, a single flagpole is often seen to contain flags from numerous countries flying from its ropes and mast, thereby becoming a historically significant, multinational symbol that helps celebrate cultural differences. In this way, flagpoles unite the world.

More than any other item of home or business décor, flags document personal and cultural identity and promote acceptance amongst diverse backgrounds. Flagpoles can’t tell the whole story of a person, but they can broadcast a person’s interests and heritage in a manner that is non-confrontational and immune to miscommunication. They invite those who walk by to celebrate differences and explore new ideas, food, and opportunities. It’s why New York pizzerias hang American and Italian flags on the walls above their menus, and why hotels, corporations, and government buildings fly the colors of different countries from flagpoles of equal height.

A flag is a bold statement that is emphasized by the flagpole it flies from. Likewise, a sequence of flags hung on the same flagpole is a customized storybook. It narrates to the world that which a person finds important and interesting. Sales of flags and flagpoles are on the rise. As globalism spreads, people are using flags to declare their importance and unique personal history to the world. Flags used for this purpose is a trend that has yet to fade after thousands of years.

Flagpoles are the ultimate form of self-expression. They are a welcome mat and a friend request, a status report that rivals any social media post. More and more homes and businesses are using flags to represent the multicultural diversity of the occupants inside, including the International Space Station. Astronauts are often photographed holding a miniature version of their country’s flag while in orbit. On Earth as in space, there is probably no greater symbol for peace than a line of flagpoles proudly displaying the rich heritage of countries throughout the world.