The State Flag of New California

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If my fellow Americans recall their American history, you remember the state of Virginia suffered from a great deal of political turmoil during the Civil War. As a result, residents from West Virginia decided to secede from Virginia and create a new state. This was not a quick and easy process. In fact, from the first stirrings of creating West Virginia until the day the federal government recognized West Virginia as a state, took about 60 years.

Today, there is a great deal of political contention in the state of California. As a result, there are a number of movements among California residents to secede from California and create a new state.

Treasonous socialists are looking to leave the United States and turn California into an independent country. As a patriotic American, I do not support them, as they are traitors to the United States.

Others are proposing the creation of three states – Northern California, Southern California and Central California. While this is a better solution, it’s unrealistic. Dividing California into two states offers a difficult challenge. Dividing it into three states only further complicates things and therefore makes it less likely to succeed. Plus, that type of secession doesn’t unite the proper political demographics. I can’t support that either.

In the past few weeks, I heard about a movement that I passionately support. The idea is to create a state called New California from the central and eastern counties of California, while leaving the coastal cities and counties untouched. In my opinion, this is a brilliant idea. It’s simple. It requires none of the coastal counties to change anything. They would still remain California. But the rest of us, the patriots who believe in the Bill of Rights, devoted Americans who hold the Declaration of Independence as sacred, and who have sworn to kill and die in defense of the Constitution, can live as free men and women in New California.

Personally, I have complete faith in New California and I think it is only a matter of time before it becomes a reality. Hopefully, unlike West Virginia, it won’t take 60 years to happen.

Being inspired by the ideology of this movement, I decided I could contribute by designing the state flag of New California. There was one being used already, but I felt I could improve upon it.

Most modern flags are designed to follow rules of color combinations, established centuries ago, from medieval coats of arms. The artistry of drawing and establishing these guidelines was known as “heraldry”.

All heraldic designs used a number of primary colors known as “tinctures”. These tinctures were divided into two main groups. There were two “metals” and five “colors”.

METALS:
Gold/Yellow (known as “Or”)
Silver/White (known as “Argent”)

COLORS:
Red (known as “Gules”)
Black (known as “Sable”)
Blue (known as “Azure”)
Green (known as “Vert”)
Purple (known as “Purpure”)

One of the most basic and important rules regarding tinctures in heraldic design is to never overlap colors or metals. The reason being – the human eye has a difficult time seeing the contrast between these color combinations from a distance.

You can only place metals on colors, or colors on metals.

The whole point of flags and coats of arms painted upon shields was to quickly identify friend from foe on the battlefield. When you were preparing to fire an arrow at someone 600 feet away, you had to make sure the person holding that shield was your enemy, not your ally.

Modern state flags follow these rules as well. For those who may think these “rules” are outdated and never used anymore, you use them every day. Modern traffic signs follow the standards of “colors on metals” and “metals on colors”, as a way to assure they can be read from a distance, while driving at high speeds.

Here, we can see the original New California flag design proposed by Sutter County, California.

Based upon the previous explaination of the history of heraldry and some of the rationale and reasoning behind flag designs, you can quickly spot numerous flaws in the layout of this flag.

The field is an odd coloring of maroon, instead of a primary color. Plus, it uses a gradient, slowly blending from a dark, almost black maroon on top, to a much lighter maroon on the bottom.

The center stripe is azure on top of maroon. This is a color atop a color and goes against the rules of vivid contrast. Likewise, the canton in the upper left contains a gold star in a silver field, which is a metal on top of a metal.

The gold star is not a solid color, but rather an embossed image with a beveled edge. Again, this kind of embellishment is never used on flags or shield devices. Colors are solid, so they can be easily seen and reproduced. Gradients and beveling are not design elements that are ever used.
The text of “New California” is strangely offset. Instead of being centered in the stripe, it is pushed to the right in a way that looks unbalanced.

The motto of “A More Perfect Union” conforms to the tincture rules properly (gold atop a color) but again, it is offset in a rather uneven way. Pushed slightly to the right of center, it feels unbalanced and awkward.

Despite the numerous tincture flaws with this design, the overall layout is very balanced and aesthetically pleasing. In my design, I have tried to mirror some of these design elements (a similarly-positioned stripe and canton) in honor of this first flag design.

There are numerous historical flags which served as an inspiration for my design of the New California flag.

First is the “Gadsden Flag” from the Revolutionary War. This symbol of the rattlesnake was one of the first flags used by American colonists as the initial stirrings against the British Empire began.

Another inspiration is the current national flag of the United States of America, Old Glory with her blue canton of 50 white stars and 13 stripes to represent our founding colonies.

A flag that has been adopted in recent years as a way to honor the efforts of police and firefighter first responders are the “thin blue line” and the “thin red line” flags, which are black and white versions of the American flag, with a single stripe turned to blue or red.

Finally, there are design elements from the California State flag (namely the upper left star) which serves as a reminder of the origins of the state of New California.

Here is my proposed design for the state flag of New California including all the reasons and symbolism behind the design.

First, the aspect ratio of the flag is 19:10 which matches the current national flag of the United States of America.

The foundation of the flag is a yellow field, in honor of the “Gadsden Flag” from the American Revolution.

In the upper left is a blue quarter, matching the blue used in the canton of Old Glory. For balance and symmetry, it is a quarter instead of a canton.

Beneath the quarter is a red stripe 1/13 the height of the flag, as a way to represent the current American flag stripes. This design also respects and pays homage to the “thin red line” and “thin blue line” honorary flags for police and firefighters.

Within the red stripe are 13 five-pointed stars (known as a “mullet” in medieval heraldry) to honor the original 13 colonies of the United States.

Finally, the blue quarter contains a large yellow star to represent an individual state and an acknowledgement hearkening back to the red star on the California Republic flag.

Coloring conforms to medieval heraldic rules of tinctures and metals for maximum visibility.

The red and blue colors are designed to match the colors of Old Glory as faithfully as possible. Based on color information published by the American Legion, these are the color standards which should be used.

Red:
RGB: 191r, 41g, 48b
CMYK: 12c, 95m, 75y, 0k

Blue:
RGB: 0r, 40g, 104b
CMYK: 100c, 52m, 0y, 48k

Yellow:
RGB: 251r, 217g, 0b
CMYK: 100c, 52m, 0y, 48k

Finally, while the flag of the United States of America is nicknamed “Old Glory”, the nickname for the New California state flag is the “New Guard”, in honor of the Declaration of Independence line which states, “…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.”

To download a PDF summary of the flag creation, go to:
http://www.InkShard.com/pdf/NewCaliforniaFlag.pdf

To download copies of the flag in various file formats, go to:
http://www.InkShard.com/downloads/NewCaliforniaFlag.zip

To learn more about New California, go to:
http://www.NewCaliforniaState.com

An Open Letter to Everytown Authors Council

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As a novelist, I believe freedom of speech is one of the most important human freedoms that American citizens have ordered our government to never interfere with.

Our next most vital right, second to our freedom, is our right to defend that freedom from all who would seek to take it away.

Any threat against our Second Amendment is a veiled threat against the First.

A few days ago, I found out about an initiative, funded by Michael Bloomberg, called the Everytown Authors Council, seeking to recruit fellow writers to encourage more gun laws.

As an NRA member, I hereby offer a challenge to all of those writers.

Come visit me in California.

Shoot some guns with me.

Educate yourself about firearms before you pass judgement on owning one.

I will shoot video of our meeting. I encourage you to do the same.

I will post our discussion and experiences online, so everyone can fairly see both of our viewpoints.

There are currently 130 writers who have volunteered to take part in the Everytown Authors Council. Part of their vow states, “we pledge to use our voices wherever and whenever we can, doing our part to help mobilize more
Americans to help save lives.”

Okay. Here is a chance to honor your pledge. Use your voice to debate a fellow writer and let us discuss our views.

I look forward to seeing how many of you will accept my invitation.

Oh! Incidentally, I fully expect all 130 writers to ignore me and none of them will accept this invitation.

But if they do, can I please get an ammunition sponsor? Federal? Hornady? Winchester? Remington? Somebody? If I end up getting 10 people who agree, this is going to get expensive!

Why are novelists terrible boyfriends?

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When having conversations about their lovelife, most people talk about what they want to gain from a relationship.
“I want someone who treats me like this…”
“I want someone with these interests…”
“I want someone who does this…”
“I want someone who does that…”
“I want…”
“I want…”
“I want…”
“Me. Me. Me. Me. Me.”

I would never dare to be so conceited. Why would I presume I had a right to give orders to a girl I never met? Instead of reciting a litany of qualifications I demand others to possess, I’d rather tell you what I have to offer. Besides, you already know what I want in a girl. I don’t need to tell you, because all human beings want the same thing. Loyalty. Decorum. Fidelity. Passion. Devotion. Integrity. Dignity. Virtue. Chivalry matters. Always has. Always will. Rather than insisting others embody those values, I prefer to improve those traits in myself.

One trait I can’t improve are my looks. I own a mirror. I know what I look like. Scale of 1 to 10, I’m like a 2. Sure, I was about a 7 or an 8 back in Ohio, but I live in California now. Let’s be honest. 2. Maybe a 3 under good lighting. These big ol’ teeth of mine, I look like a cross between Jon Cryer and a rabbit. Plus, I’m about 5’7″ and 45 years old. That renders me additionally gross and creepy. Too short and too old. We all know only Tom Cruise gets a pass on those two faults.

Face it, once you pass 40, it’s over. You’ll be single forever. If I were a woman, I’d be two steps away from being Mrs. Deagle. I would just get started buying the cats.

Believe me, in my heart, I know full well that 40 is not old at all. One day, when I have reached 97 years upon this glorious earth, I shall look back on these good old days as a golden time of youth and vitality. Those of you who are fresh out of your precious teens have not yet gained the perspective to see that reaching your elder years is a blessing. For it is only those of us with weary souls and buoyant hearts who have always embraced the fleeting beauty which is life! To dance upon the world for as many days as we can hold. To remain humbled by childlike love and gratitude for our every breath – this is the measure of ones agelessness! This is… sorry. I uh, got a little carried away.

Where was I?

Ah, yes, uh, but my unattractive physical traits are minor compared to my veritable bevy of faults and countless reasons you should never go out with anyone like me. You should be forewarned, I’m an extraordinarily dull and boring guy. I never drink alcohol and have never been drunk in my entire life. Never done drugs. Never smoked a single joint. Never took one drag off a cigarette. Heck, I don’t even drink coffee. In our culture, my prudish purity is not admirable, it just make me an arrogant prick. Never fall in love with a guy who could potentially be a good influence on you. Last thing you need is to date Little Lord Fauntleroy incarnate.

I was never abused, or molested. I’ve never been incarcerated and I’m not some damaged “badboy” compelling you to help turn my life around. I can sincerely say I had a joyous childhood full of enchantment and wonder with beloved gradeschool friends whom I still talk with to this very day. I have never had a venereal disease. Never fathered children. Never had any emotional or behavioral disorders. Never required psychotropic drugs or support groups. I’ve never even cheated on a single girlfriend… Okay. Okay. There was that one time. But she was naked. And she was throwing herself at me. This petite little 18 year old blond who sang like Tori Amos and I just… That might be too much information. Let’s move on. I’ve never been overweight. I exercise regularly and eat healthy – My doctor calls me “the poster child” because I do everything right. Which probably means I’m going to keel over dead when I’m 48. Just long enough to disappoint you.

My passions are things you won’t enjoy at all. I’m an avid skateboarder and love riding pools in skateparks. Millions of kids watch my skate videos on YouTube, illustrating how juvenile I am. I spent my teens as an equestrian and my twenties as a hang glider pilot and a club kid in underground industrial nightclubs. You obviously aren’t the kind of girl who wants to skateboard, fly 6000′ above the earth in a kite, saddle horses, or go dancing to Nitzer Ebb and Front 242. You’ve never even heard of those bands. I have done geeky things like program websites at Walt Disney Studios for over 6 years. I grew up playing Dungeons & Dragons, collecting Star Wars toys, and swordfighting in the Society for Creative Anachronism. I love to write and have published 5 novels. Since you never heard of me, that proves these aren’t very good books. Since I’ve penned so many tales, that proves I’m a terribly selfish hermit. Sitting at home and writing a book no one will read is the most uninteresting way any grown man can spend a Saturday night. You’ll never find me watching football or playing videogames, because I’d rather be longboarding or bicycling. Speaking of riding, I didn’t own a car for over a decade and only rode my motorcycle everywhere. I’m Peter Pan. Never grew up. Very immature. Clearly not your type.

I am not aware of possessing any body piercings or tattoos. I don’t even like to rock a sexy shadow of Aragorn facial hair. Didn’t serve in the military. Didn’t graduate college. Never earned a six-figure salary. There is no reason for you to waste your time with someone like me when there are plenty of 6’2″ bearded, tattooed, alpha-males begging to father your children. You owe it to yourself to let them. Life is short. Don’t get involved with a boring nerd like me. Southern California is filled with dashing and successful men. I’m neither.

By the way, with the exception of office jobs and parochial school, I’ve dressed like this my whole life. Jeans and a tshirt. That will never change. I’ll never call myself a “goof” or claim to be “random” – genuinely goofy and random people never feel compelled to warn anyone about it. Luna Lovegood never did. Why should I? I’ve never used the word “party” as a verb and I’ve never used the phrase “at the end of the day” in any conversation of my life. I’m definitely not going to call myself “fun-loving” because – DUH! – who isn’t? Everyone is fun-loving. Stalin would have labeled himself “fun-loving”, but would you want to date him?

Going back to those office jobs, I can never hold one down. I’ve been laid off 6 times in my life. What kind of loser gets laid off 6 times? I get kicked to the curb so often, I just expect it at this point. Sooner or later, I’ll be out of a job and struggling to find work again. That the kind of guy you want? Being with the unemployed aspiring novelist when he is 20 years old is romantic. When he’s 50 years old, it’s pathetic. Don’t lower your standards down to the likes of me. You deserve better. Don’t you?

Speaking of lack of work, now that I’m reaching a time in my life when age discrimination begins to play a part in vastly reducing my employment options, I’m building a humble tiny house out in the desert, to save some money. In a few short years, I will basically be Obi Wan Kenobi. Not exactly your Mr. Right.

Sociologically, my views are very old-fashioned. I’m intelligent enough to recognize “political correctness” as nothing more than fascism parading as manners. I cherish obsolete values like God, family, patriotism, the Bill of Rights, free-market American capitalism, and keeping my word. Heck, I’m so traditional, if I were going to marry a girl, I would be morally obligated to ask her father for permission. Any man who fails to do that isn’t worthy of his betrothed. But women don’t concur with my antiquated virtues anymore nor would any respect me after exhibiting such obsolete ethics. I grew up in Ohio, where I was raised by a family of police officers and military personnel who would hunt with rifles. During 13 years of living in Hollywood, I learned West Coast girls passionately detest all those things! Cops? Military? Firearms? My very bloodline is abhorrent to the chicks of Los Angeles.

I do not fit in with the world. And on those rare occasions when a lady has caught my eye, I tend to get far too serious, far too quickly.