"Our Country!
In her intercourse with foreign nations may she always be in the right;
but right or wrong, our country!"

    --Commodore Stephen Decatur

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

The 51st State

While most of the country was focused on the results of the presidential election, the citizens of Puerto Rico voted in a referendum on the question of becoming a state. Although critics and opponents of statehood point out that many people left the statehood ballot blank and that, absent a clear majority, there is no guarantee that Puerto Rico will become a state, it is nevertheless true that more and more Puerto Ricans vote for statehood every time this kind of referendum is held, so it is really only a matter of time before Puerto Rico joins the Union. Therefore, the Prolix Patriot presents some ideas for a 51-star flag as a public service, inspired by designs from American history.

The Diamond:

This design was popular in the middle of the 19th century, and is often depicted in artwork from the Civil War. Both the 29-star (pictured below) and 33-star flag are known to have used a diamond, after the admission of Iowa and Oregon respectively to the Union.

The Great Star:

Poetically symbolizing the national slogan, “E pluribus unum,” the great star design was popular at the same time as the diamond. Examples are known to exist for 20 stars after Congress passed the Flag Act of 1818, 26 stars after the admission of Michigan, and 33 stars, again for Oregon (pictured below).

Concentric Circles:

Ever since the original Betsy Ross flag, circles have been popular. Indeed, the design used by proponents of Puerto Rican statehood is based on a circle. However, the Prolix Patriot offers a more traditional design based on the very popular concentric circle designs of the late 1800’s with 36 stars after the admission of Nevada, 37 stars after the admission of Nebraska, and perhaps the grandest of all, 38 stars after the admission of Colorado (pictured below). There was also an unofficial 39-star design with concentric circles which was never used.

The standard square pattern of stars has been around from the beginning, but why not jazz it up a little bit? When the 51st state finally joins the Union, let's think outside the box.

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