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Permission granted by author for anyone to distribute this
writing free of charge (including translation into any
language)...under condition that no profit is made therefrom,
and that it remain intact and complete, including title and 
credit to the original author.

Ezekiel J. Krahlin


© 1997 by Ezekiel J. Krahlin
(Jehovah's Queer Witness)

The following text is a letter to the editor I sent to several
newspapers, including The Bay Area Reporter, and The Sentinel
(both in San Francisco).  It's not one of my better pieces,
but what makes it relevant is:  this letter may be the origin
for the concept of wearing the pink triangle point upward.  As
far as I know, no one before this publication ever proposed
displaying, or wore, the pink triangle other than point down.


                                   April 20, 1989


     I have designed a new flag to replace the rainbow flag
that currently represents the lesbian/gay world community.
Whether or not it is accepted by the homophile population at
large remains to be seen; however, it is a labor of love that
I offer to my gay brothers and sisters, that they may be
renewed (and even healed) during this painful passage through
the AIDS crisis...and strive ahead to become leaders in
building the foundation to a far better world.

     It is not that I am opposed to the excellent aspirations
implied by the symbolism of the is just that a
simple row of colors on a piece of cloth is too easy for
anyone to create; thus does not convey the blood, sweat, and
tears of a truly artistic achievement...and therefore does not
reflect the blood, sweat, and tears so deeply woven into the
fabric of the homosexual culture in world history.  With due
respect to the rainbow flag, I propose a new flag that I feel
will deepen our strength and lighten our hearts:

     The proposed flag is typically rectangular in shape, with
thirteen stripes of alternating white and blue c(topmost
stripe being white). All stripes are equal in height and
width, except the bottom-most (white) stripe, which is double
in height to any of the others.  In the center of this flag is
a dark-pink triangle, pointing heavenward. The triangle's tip
begins in the center of the third (white) stripe's upper edge;
and the base of the triangle rests on the topmost edge of the
third-from-bottom (white) stripe. Emerging from this triangle
is a golden snake with ruby eyes and a flickering, orange
tongue.  In the upper right of this flag shines a metallic-red
five-pointed star, located on the fourth-from-top (blue)
stripe (approximately three-quarters distant from the
triangle's right side, in relation to the flag's right border.
This single star reaches from the top edge to the bottom edge
of the blue stripe on which it is positioned).  The
bottom-most, extra-wide (white) stripe proclaims in brilliant
scarlet letters:  "DON'T TREAD ON ME".

     The reason I broke tradition by painting the pink
triangle as upward-pointing (instead of down), is to symbolize
the ascension of the gay/lesbian community...and a reversal of
the world's attitude from negative to positive.  Obviously,
the snake also serves as a phallic symbol, and thus represents
the male population of our gay culture. But what about woman?
Well, an upward-pointing pink triangle serves quite well as a
symbol for the female gender.  Therefore, the problem of
balancing and representing both halves of the human sex has
been "licked" (ha, ha!).

     I have lived in San Francisco for most of these last
sixteen years, and am known in the Castro Street area as "that
crazy guy who paints weird pictures on the back of his
jackets" (among other things).  But in case you still do not
know me by name, by face, or by reputation (or by body, for
that matter; I've been around!):  you can identify me by this
new flag I have proposed, which I have painted on the back of
a gray felt jacket...and which I shall wear as often as
possible.  Consider this artistic labor of love my way of
saying to the community (and each and every one of you): "Hi,
nice to meetcha, and thanks, folks!  Keep the faith, for the
New Age is dawning on our faces, as we lead the rest of the
world into a glorious and eternal Renaissance."

     The general theme of my New Flag is based on the Early
American Colonists who (like us) strived for freedom from the
persecution of a larger society. I end this letter by quoting,
in part, The Declaration Of Independence (The Unanimous
Declaration Of The Thirteen United States Of America):

          When in the course of human events, it
     becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the
     political bands which have connected them with
     another, and to assume among the powers of the
     earth, the separate and equal station to which the
     laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a
     decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires
     that they should declare the causes which impel
     them to the separation....That whenever any form
     of government becomes destructive... it is the
     right of the people to alter or to abolish it, and
     to institute new government, laying its foundation
     on such principles and organizing its powers in
     such form, as to them shall seem most likely to
     affect their safety and happiness...when a long
     train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing
     invariably the same object evinces a design to
     reduce them under absolute despotism, it is their
     right, it is their duty, to throw off such
     government, and to provide new guards for their
     future security.

     Take heart; and to those of you who still abuse your own
gay sisters and/or brothers, I say:  "Do not tread upon them,
or you shall be trod upon!"  We have enough work ahead of us
educating "straight" society at large, to afford any more
(intentionally malicious) interpersonal squabbles.  Don't we
hurt enough already, without creating any more pain? I sure
do! (Thanks for listening.)