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approved emblems


According to the Department of Veterans Affairs, these are the sanctioned emblems for “placement on government headstones and markers.” I found a reference to the image above on a law/politics blog I read occassionally; there’s apparently a debate over the lack of a symbol for pagans, and a lawsuit is moving forward. I was more intrigued by the emblems themselves, not being familiar with a large number of them.

There’s something sort of elegant about each of these, but it seems surreal that there is a regulated system by which they’re assigned. “You died? You were a member of the Izumo Taishakyo Mission Of Hawaii faith-group? Here’s the emblem for your headstone. Next.”

I will avoid making a libertarian rant about how unfortunate it would be for any group unable to get an appropriate icon of their faith onto this “approved emblem” list. Instead, I’ll simply observe that applying a rigid system of decoration to memorials seems like the sine qua non of weird design considerations. I’m curious as to the history of this list, because it seems to be an odd artifact of top-down taxonomic/iconographic thinking by my own goverment.

Some cursory exploration on the pagan emblem issue has lead me here. I’ll post anything I find regarding the history of the list itself.

Categories: bigidea
  1. Mike Monteiro
    October 1, 2006 at 5:32 pm

    The very bottom one is the Rebel Alliance, so it’s odd to see the Empire was left out.

  2. Kate Rutter
    October 1, 2006 at 8:20 pm

    I just hope that the BSG logo gets on there before I kick it. That said, a future major market for designers will probably be headstone and urn engraving design. The richness of tatoo design has swelled with the popularity of body-manipulation art, so I predict that the end-of-life design market will get a big leg up in the next 20-40 years as well. Sign me up.

  3. October 1, 2006 at 9:35 pm

    I am terrified by the term “end-of-life design market.” I’m just, y’know, saying.

  4. Kate Rutter
    October 4, 2006 at 11:43 pm

    Well, terror isn’t bad, it’s helpful. Like they say, go for the things that scare the crap out of you and the things that are easy. All the stuff in the middle is totally pointless.

    It’s the phrase death-care market that makes me wriggle with anxiety.

  1. April 1, 2008 at 10:56 am

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