Sex Flags of a Nexus

I think most people nowadays are familiar with the gay pride rainbow flag, but until a few days ago I was blissfully unaware the entire LGBT[a][b][c]…[z] list each has a flag of its own. I discovered this because a reader emailed me these photos taken at the Whitney Art Museum in New York:

There was a time when folk had to learn the meanings of a set of flags in order to signal to one another. How long before we’re expected to learn a different set in order to signal our virtue?


21 thoughts on “Sex Flags of a Nexus

  1. Well if a film was made of this I don’t think it would be called flags of our fathers.

    Banners of our benders perhaps.

    Pendants of our proofs

    Colours of our carpet munchers?

  2. “There was a time when folk had to learn the meanings of a set of flags in order to signal to one another. How long before we’re expected to learn a different set in order to signal our virtue?”

    Don’t be silly!

    PC terms change all the time whenever the hoi polloi catch up. NAACP was created when “colored” was okay; then it wasn’t anymore. Now my parents generation is dead, colored is coming back in vogue in the form “X of color”. Quick or you’ll miss the permissibility window.

    Flags and symbols will be the same.

  3. Seeing this sort of thing makes me a lot more comfortable with my own mortality.

  4. They need to sort this out. There are too many of them to incorporate into the Metropolitan Police logo without it looking really fussy.

  5. I’d love to see these “Rainbow” and Communists reaction if Tommy is elected as MEP

    Should be even more hilarious than moon howlers when Trump won.

    Vote: NW – Tommy, GB – Brexit; NI – DUP on Thursday 23 May

  6. Top row. Middle. “Bear Pride Flag”. What?.. Proud to be a bear? Genuine WTF from this observer

  7. The poly flag is hilarious

    I confess, I did look up the polyamory flag and was going to subject it to some snide remarks, but decided the post worked well as it stood. Honestly though, it looks as though it’s been created by someone with no artistic talent and a confused idea about what he wants to portray, but is convinced by how important it is. Rather like polyamorists in general, tbh.

  8. Surely there’s some way us dirty old men can get in on this racket?

  9. @ken. Yes google helped me there as well but if it ain’t obvious at first sight then t’s a fringe thing and if it’s a fringe thing, like the “leather” flag I found exists as well, then does it really need shouting about, to everyone?

  10. I’m wondering what happens when we run out of letters in the Latin alphabet to label each self-identification? Will we see Greek or Cyrillic or even Runic characters appearing, or am I being too Eurocentric with that thought? How flexible will it need to be to acknowledge and affirm every label? Is there a symbol for people who don’t want to be pinned down to any one group but don’t want to be left out either, or is that Q? I find this self-labeling business intriguing.

  11. Today I came across a selection of these in a classroom at the secondary school I’ve been working at.

  12. I take Tim’s point, about the use of numerous numerous flags for ship-to-ship conversation in the Age of Sail. I picture a slightly more festive 19th-century Royal Navy than probably existed, sailing the salty main inclusively, not just *signaling* its virtue but *semaphoring* it. “Virtue semaphore” ha ha ha

  13. @Andy

    Be interested to know which ones made the cut!

    The standard gay pride one is something anyone who wants to be “inclusive” seems free to wave around, it’s very embracing and non threatening and to be fair that’s partly because it’s so vague. I get it that if you’re a Bear or a Leatherman or whatever, then you might want a symbol that more explicitly represents *you* and the people in your community – who you may well feel a much closer bond with than with the wider LGBTQ+ movement, while the mainstreaming of the gay pride flag has somewhat excluded from its umbrella those groups still seen as fringe or transgressive.

    In a way you don’t *want* a well-meaning, self-identified progressive type to feel happy waving around *your* flag, unless they genuinely are liberal enough to embrace your lifestyle and culture and the stuff that comes with it, and even if they don’t share those desires or tastes or values are unashamedly in favour of your right to follow your bliss, and not shy away from what it involves.

    So where does that leave your proggy secondary school teacher, just how far will they go? Which specific groups and practices will they feel able to endorse, or do they prefer the woolly comfort of the generic “pride” flag so they can avoid the finer details?

    “Today, children, we will be be drawing a picture of the ABDL Pride Flag?” (The diaper on the flag is a bit of clue for those of you feeling Google averse on this thread…)

    How about “this lesson, 9-Seacole, we will be looking at the Master/slave Pride Flag and the Ownership Pride Flag and thinking about safe sex and coercive relationships”?

    Rubber Pride?

    Pony Pride?

    Or will they stick with the “safe” ones, like Bi Pride and Asexual Pride and Lesbian Pride and Straight Ally Pride?

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