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Thujone: A Man of Many Talents

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4 hours ago, AgentZero said:

i read it as the thin blue line hides a lot of blood/violence

Like any good art, lots of interpretation. 

I always see the blue line flag as a symbol that police see themselves as above the nation they swore to protect. It's a deeply disturbing image to me. 

I see this painting as a representation of that. The true American flag obscured by the murderous mission of the police industry. 

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5 hours ago, AgentZero said:

i read it as the thin blue line hides a lot of blood/violence

I like that interpretation.

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Thank you. On Copyright, it originates the second art is created. It does not have to be filed with the copyright office. 

True, but registration is cheap and has a ton of advantages if you ever need to enforce the sucker. The biggest being statutory damages, attorney fees, and costs.

 

Being a writer and a litigator, I think, you probably know all this though. And don't want to detract from the main point though. Awesome work.

 

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Thanks for posting. I've gone off about that stupid blue line flag as an abomination in many different ways, first and foremost the outright and shameless appropriation of the American flag to make a political statement. Was time to break out the oil paints and do some protest art.

Curious if you are opposed to all appropriation of the US flag or just those antithetical to our values. You’ve clearly spent time thinking about it so I’m genuinely interested. I ask because I have several apparel items of the rainbow flag/US flag combination.

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7 hours ago, troph said:


Curious if you are opposed to all appropriation of the US flag or just those antithetical to our values. You’ve clearly spent time thinking about it so I’m genuinely interested. I ask because I have several apparel items of the rainbow flag/US flag combination.

I had not thought of the specific scenario you mention. So I'll try to think it out here.

Re: the rainbow flag. You can *find* rainbow/us flag combos, but most people who want to support LGBTQA use a flag that is original to the cause and does not appropriate the American flag.

That said: you can argue that two flags that do appropriate the US flag can have very different interpretations/consequences. For instance, the blue line flag has a context. It was created as a direct response to BLM and is a declaration of "I support the cops despite what happens to black Americans." It is a sign of allegiance/support for the group already in power, so to speak. The rainbow flag (if it truly is a facsimile of the US flag, which again, I have never seen in person, as opposed to the ubiquitous rainbow stripe flag) has an entirely different context. It is coming from an oppressed minority and doesn't have the effect of making a case for harming anyone else's rights. Like, at all. The Blue Line one is more akin to a battle flag. The argument is similar to those who shout All Lives Matter. One, no one ever suggested all lives don't matter. BLM is asking for people to recognize that black lives do, in fact, matter, when they are often treated as if they don't. We don't need to shout how all lives matter when they aren't being systemically murdered. If they were, we'd need to say they matter too. But they aren't. 

Similar deal here. So to answer your question, if someone appropriated the American flag to put rainbows on the bars, it wouldn't bother me because these are historically repressed groups. Flying that flag isn't going to push an agenda that hurts anyone. But flying the blue line flag does push such an agenda that is antithetical to American values. 

So again, I think like all of life, there are layers and nuance that are important to acknowledge. I would prefer the American flag remaining agnostic in times of conflict over values. Our differences all occur beneath that flag and should be worked out beneath that flag. To appropriate it is to factionalize which I don't think helps. So while I think certain appropriations of our flag clearly do more harm than others, I think the best approach is to leave the flag alone and fly one tailored to your cause. 

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5 minutes ago, Thujone said:

I had not thought of the specific scenario you mention. So I'll try to think it out here.

Re: the rainbow flag. You can *find* rainbow/us flag combos, but most people who want to support LGBTQA use a flag that is original to the cause and does not appropriate the American flag.

That said: you can argue that two flags that do appropriate the US flag can have very different interpretations/consequences. For instance, the blue line flag has a context. It was created as a direct response to BLM and is a declaration of "I support the cops despite what happens to black Americans." It is a sign of allegiance/support for the group already in power, so to speak. The rainbow flag (if it truly is a facsimile of the US flag, which again, I have never seen in person, as opposed to the ubiquitous rainbow stripe flag) has an entirely different context. It is coming from an oppressed minority and doesn't have the effect of making a case for harming anyone else's rights. Like, at all. The Blue Line one is more akin to a battle flag. The argument is similar to those who shout All Lives Matter. One, no one ever suggested all lives don't matter. BLM is asking for people to recognize that black lives do, in fact, matter, when they are often treated as if they don't. We don't need to shout how all lives matter when they aren't being systemically murdered. If they were, we'd need to say they matter too. But they aren't. 

Similar deal here. So to answer your question, if someone appropriated the American flag to put rainbows on the bars, it wouldn't bother me because these are historically repressed groups. Flying that flag isn't going to push an agenda that hurts anyone. But flying the blue line flag does push such an agenda that is antithetical to American values. 

So again, I think like all of life, there are layers and nuance that are important to acknowledge. I would prefer the American flag remaining agnostic in times of conflict over values. Our differences all occur beneath that flag and should be worked out beneath that flag. To appropriate it is to factionalize which I don't think helps. So while I think certain appropriations of our flag clearly do more harm than others, I think the best approach is to leave the flag alone and fly one tailored to your cause. 

Look ......... this is all nice, and wordy, and all,  but I still don't see no cop dick eating pics....... dammit !!

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Had some requests from people marching if they could print out my portrait of George Floyd to bring to protests. 
If you have friends going out to the protest and they want to use the image, "The Thin Blue Line" is available at the link. This is not permission to sell the image in any way! It's a free download!

https://t.co/NfYFwEEsMC?amp=1

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22 hours ago, APMP said:

True, but registration is cheap and has a ton of advantages if you ever need to enforce the sucker. The biggest being statutory damages, attorney fees, and costs.

 

Being a writer and a litigator, I think, you probably know all this though. And don't want to detract from the main point though. Awesome work.

 

Counterpoint.  Statutory damages are barely worth the price of admission.  Attorneys fees could be worthwhile, but if you're ever at a point of having to enforce the copyright, I suspect that the injunction will be goal, or the damages will be sufficiently large that attorneys fees won't make or break the case.

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Counterpoint.  Statutory damages are barely worth the price of admission.  Attorneys fees could be worthwhile, but if you're ever at a point of having to enforce the copyright, I suspect that the injunction will be goal, or the damages will be sufficiently large that attorneys fees won't make or break the case.


Well there's the whole presumed validity thing too, which hasn't been crushed like in the patent world. And maybe it's the patentee-focus in me talking, but I always thought the option of statutory damages was useful. Damages in copyright seem so difficult to prove (it's tricky in patent cases too, of course).

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Here is my take on what it represents:

In the American flag blue represents justice and red represents courage.  In this painting, the blue is strangling someone in an extrajudicial killing, and so the blue in this image represents a perversion of justice.  What could stop this perversion of justice is the courage of others within the system to take a stand, but this courage which should shine through is covered up & buried by a corrupted system.  Injustice prevails while courage recedes to the background.  

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