The Corner

Flag Ownership

In my “Mutual Incomprehension” piece yesterday, I suggested that the USA

probably leads the world in a (so far as I could discover) yet-ungathered

statistic: private-household ownership of the country’s flag. Well, we

have at least one competitor for that top spot. A reader in Israel has

e-mailed me: “In this country–at least, in my city (Jerusalem)–one can

walk around a residential neighbourhood on a day that is not a national

holiday and see Israeli flags in windows, on balconies, on bumper stickers,

in bus shelters… Israeli patriotism (although, in many, eroded by the

intellectually stylish theory behind post-Zionism) is alive and kicking;

many of us still feel heart-burstingly proud of our accomplishment as a

country, and take pride in the historical discourse, acted-upon idealism and

national initiative and identity out of which our flag emerged. … My

husband and I own four copies of our flag (two full

sized, two car-sized). I found my personal copy of our flag lying in the

bushes on Mount Zion as I was walking down from the Old City, shortly after

I had

left the comforts of Canada and immigrated here. It means a lot to me, as

I’m sure you can imagine.”

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