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Changing the New Zealand flag

By Matthew, September 17 2015, 05:09

The Red Peak: a new flag for New Zealand

New Zealand is choosing a new flag, and so far the results are a disaster.

For a very long time, a large number of New Zealanders have not been happy with our flag. It's because our flag looks a lot like many other flags. Look:

Do you know which flag is the New Zealand flag?

Our flag is not very original, and it has a strong connection to our colonial past (which a lot of people don't like). We want a flag that represents our unique identity. Our prime minister decided he would put the issue to a vote.

We will have a referendum at the end of this year to choose the best candidate from a short list. There will then be another referendum to choose between the best candidate and our current (boring) flag.

We have these four choices:

Do you notice anything? Three of them are almost the same! The one in the top right has been called "hypno-flag". It is because if you stare at it too long, you might get hypnotised.

These final four choices were chosen from thousands of ideas New Zealanders submitted. The choice was made by a committee. None of the members of the committee were designers or artists. Can you imagine that? It would be like choosing a new national anthem without asking a musician or composer!

Many New Zealanders are angry because if you do not like the fern design, then you have no options.

There is one more choice. It is very popular on social media, and there is a big campaign to add it to the short list. It is called Red Peak. It has a lot of deep meaning. You can read about it on the Red Peak site if you want. I really like it. I would be proud to fly this flag.

Leave a comment and tell me what you think about the choices for New Zealand. Do you want to change your country's flag?

colony — when a country owns another country far away, as England owned New Zealand
identity — the ideas and beliefs that make one person or group unique
prime minister — the head of government in some countries
put [something] to a vote — to ask people to decide by voting 
referendum — a public vote on a special issue
candidate — a person or thing to be considered
hypnotise — to put someone into a state like sleep, but you can hear and answer questions
submit — to give to someone so it can be considered for something
committee — a group of people who make a decision together
national anthem — the national song
composer — a person who creates or writes music
fly a flag — show a flag in a high place for everyone to see

  • Matthew's picture
    About me
    I am from New Zealand. I lived in Japan and Brazil for a long time, but now I am back home in Auckland. I am the founder of Poligo. I like to play guitar and video games and surf when I get the chance. I have a wife and two boys.
    I specialize in teaching English to professionals and English teachers. I have taught English since 2001 in Japan, New Zealand and Brazil. I speak Japanese & Portuguese. I am the founder of Poligo and The English Farm (an online school for business English).

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