Hello, This is not my normal kind of post. I’m the father of Caleb (whom you’ll see in the Kid Start program). Caleb is a vexillologist. If you’re not familiar with the term, it mean the study of flags. Caleb is absolutely in love with flags of all sorts. He collects flags from all different countries. He also collects coins from around the world. He makes up his own countries and we’ve actually had flags printed for his made up countries. He’s just a big geography buff and I love him for it. At the age of 12 he’s very politically aware and has strong opinions which I absolutely love having conversations about.
My dilemma came a few months ago when he asked that we place our Puerto Rican flag outside the house on flag pole. We typically use this flag when we go to Latin events and he typically hangs it in his room along with hundreds of much smaller flags that he uses to “decorate” his room. Our house came with a mount a flag outside so it wouldn’t be a big hassle and we already have the flag and a flag pole. I told him I didn’t think that would be a good idea to hang the flag outside, to keep it inside. We live in neighborhood mostly made up of older Caucasian families and I didn’t feel us calling attention to our Puerto Rican roots in this way would be appreciated.
He agreed as he’s (probably too) aware of the political climate we’ve been in. So life went on and we he continues to collect flags and memorabilia from around the world. As I mentioned before, we recently ordered a custom flag that he made up. This is for a made up country called “Shermany”, the name is obviously supposed to mimic Germany but this flag has some adjustments that he likes better than the standard flag. I thought to myself today, “Why didn’t he make tweaks to the Puerto Rican flag?.. is that because I wouldn’t let him display it?..he instead chose to make tweaks to his German best friend’s flag”.
I know as a Spanish instructor I’m supposed to be proud of my heritage at all times. But I’m also a very low key person and I feel like the flag is an annoyance to the community. I’m not sure if I’m overthinking it, biased against my own kind (I was born and raised in Puerto Rico) or if this another time that I’m simply “going along, to get along”.
Do you have any thoughts?