Tuesday, October 6, 2009


After the UJC Board Meeting on Tuesday, I discovered the following Memo in the archives of the Founders...of America:

"In the heat of our Philadelphia Summer, the States of our new Union have here gathered to develop a name for our collective enterprise. We engaged a Branding consultant, who insisted on being compensated in British pounds, who has presented us with two options: "The Federal States" and "The United States of America." After extended debate, the delegates agreed that the States gathered together will hereafter be called "The United States of America." There was much cheering, huzzahs and such, the delegates shouting 'USA, USA, USA' until G. Washington brought them to order declaring, "None of that. Just like the Boy's Clubs (founded 1771), we shall tolerate no acronyms...none." And, there was silence.

The delegates then turned to the question of a logo, a mark, if you will. Some strongly suggested a map showing the thirteen States, but others prevailed with the argument that the USA...strike that...the United States of America, will surely grow and, each time that it did so, the map would have to be published anew. Delegates from South Carolina and Georgia argued for a mark they had proposed that would show the eternal unity of the states gathered together; delegates from Massachusetts argued for a mark that showed two rifles crossed over a newspaper symbolizing freedom of speech and press and the absolute right to bear arms; and so on.

The arguments were fierce and often sharp. Outside the windows of Independence Hall a little woman, bent over from the weight of her load. was seen handing out tiny banners. "What have you there?" one of the delegates yelled? "I'm selling these banners," she replied. "What are they?" "They are called 'flags,'" she yelled back. "Of what?" came the question. "The stars and stripes symbolize our new nation." "Wow. What do they cost?" a delegate asked. "Well, each flag is 10 new American dollars; if you want to buy the rights to the flag forever, the cost will be 1000 British pounds." "Sold," the delegates shouted in unison. "USA, USA, USA" they screamed until G. Washington cracked a wooden tooth shouting for silence.

One of the delegates noted that "we'll have to change the flag each time we add a State" but Washington said: "don't be silly" and threw the delegate from the room.

And, so, our national mark was born. USA, USA, USA forever." Minutes prepared by James Madison.

A rose is a rose is a....


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