This flag debate has been going on for a hot minute.

I think we can all agree, that as a people, Mainers are not likely to change their mind about much. You can debate any given subject on Earth with someone from Maine, and you're never likely to witness a person more likely, if not eager, to dig their heels in and disagree with you. We're as stubborn as a mule tied to a boat anchor.

When the debate started making its way around the last couple years about changing the design on Maine's state flag, it was met with extremely strong opinions in both directions. Hordes of people were all-in on the new design, others not even a little bit. People seemed either steeped in tradition, or looking to distance ourselves from a flag that's design is well, a bit confusing, honestly. Let's look together...

Maine's original "Dirigo" design looks like this.

Maine.Gov image
Maine.Gov image

This has been our flag for generations. While most of us have never thought twice about it, others feel that it doesn't quickly and easily represent Maine. 2 dudes, an anchor, a moose, and a scythe, on a field of blue, seems a bit convoluted. But, it has many staunch defenders that won't let it go down without a fight.

Here's the proposed design, which most people are familiar with at this point.


This design, which many are fond of its simplicity, simply depicts a pine tree with a blue North Star. Supporters feel this more accurately represents Mainers as whole. On the other hand, opponents feel it's a bit too simple and that it's not close enough to the actual 1901 design which featured a more detailed pine tree.

Technically, the new design is our current state flag, right now.

It's true. Last year, the debate at the state level was incredibly fierce. And, it was incredibly close to voting time, so as opposed to signing the bill into law, Gov. Mills chose to not sign it, so that it would become law on its own without her signature, keeping it off this past November's ballot, according to News Center Maine. This was on purpose, as Gov. Mills thought Maine's people should choose the design, not legislators.

So come fall of this year, it will appear on ballot and we'll actually get to choose our flag ourselves. In the meantime, I don't think there's any plans to hoist the 1901 flag until it's voted on. But as it stands right now, that blue Dirigo flag, is technically not our state flag by law. We'll have to wait until November to find out once and for all.

Maybe when choosing a new flag design, they should consult this list and base it off that...

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