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There's Nothing Super About The Australian Flag

22/02/2016 11:42 AM AEDT | Updated 15/07/2016 12:51 PM AEST
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Nick Moir via The Age

On Australia Day this year I saw a lot of people wearing the flag as a cape. Which lead me to think: 'What an amazing idea for a superhero movie!' There's Captain America, so why not Captain Australia?

Then I thought, let's not do that. Captain Australia's theme song would be awful. "Aussie, Aussie, Aussie..." --- cringe, cringe, cringe.

His superpowers would also be weird, as super strength and speed aren't what Australia needs right now. We need a hero who can lower housing prices, increase the value of our minerals and eliminate debt. And to be widely appreciated, Captain Australia would also need to be handy with a bat and ball.

Then I thought about his costume, and realised that anything based on the Australian flag just would not do. Think about it. Not many things are less Australian than the Australian flag. For starters, it isn't Australian, it's British. An almost blank, blue canvas stamped with a British trademark.

Sure, British people did help shape this country into what it is today, but so did everyone who's arrived since, or was already here. And really, if we're talking about contemporary cultural influences, that trademark in the corner shouldn't be British, it should be American.

Also, the British don't respect us. Every time they beat us at a sport they invented, they have a national day of celebration. While I was living in the UK I was constantly called a "stupid convict" by those descended from people who sailed halfway around the world, stopped off at a land of warm weather and beautiful beaches, dropped off convicts and returned home. And I'm stupid?

Name one other country whose flag is as devoted as ours to a colonising force? Not the Brazilian, Indian, Canadian or American flags. There is the New Zealand flag, but if you're using New Zealand to win any argument, I'd say you've lost before you started.

To be fair -- and in Australia we're all about fairness -- we could try representing all the different nationalities and cultures here on the one flag. As we're one of the most multicultural countries on the planet, however, it'd be a little crowded.

I imagine that if you looked at that flag for too long, it'd probably give you a seizure, or you'd see a three-dimensional dolphin.

Navy blue isn't the right colour for the flag either. It traps heat, so isn't appropriate for our climate. We don't even wear much navy, apart from in our socks, jocks and singlets while driving trucks.

So why not choose some colours that better reflect the predominately bright, striking and stark beauty of this country? Maybe some earthy reds, browns and yellows?

The obvious solution is the Aboriginal Flag, and not just because it's colour appropriate. They were here first. I'd also be happy if we held a design competition open to everyone, had the year-six kids at the local elementary school to do it, or used that green and gold boxing kangaroo that should never have been allowed to escape the 80s.

Any of those would be better than what we have now.

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