Being a U.S. Expat is a contradiction. You’re American – beholden to your citizenship and heritage, but you’re also a resident (and possibly a citizen) elsewhere. Regardless of where you live, you share many of the same feelings, hardships, aspirations and dreams of your fellow American expats.
Except…you don’t have a flag that identifies your relationship with America. The U.S. Flag represents the people of a nation. 50 states. 50 stars. You’re in none of them. So does it represent you? Do those people living behind those 50 little white stars consider you to be a part of the flag?
Some say yes. Begrudgingly. They accept that you’re technically an American like them. But that’s where ends. Because you’ve left the country, they say, that’s the only thing you have in common. Others say no. No, you don’t have a right to claim the U.S. Flag as your own. You aren’t one of those stars, you aren’t on U.S. Soil. You left. Your choice. Get your own flag.
Get your own flag? What a novel idea.
And maybe you don’t feel like you have a flag. You’re an American outside of America, after all. Maybe you don’t have citizenship in your host country. Or maybe you do, but you still feel strongly about your U.S. heritage/roots and want to display that – without being too boastful about it to those in your host country and to those who say you have no right to “their” flag.
OUR AMERICAN EXPAT FLAG
Nothing makes a statement, and unites people, like a flag. Imagine that for a moment: a flag dedicated to each and every one of the 8 million American expats. Nothing says “we’re united and unified” quite like a symbol of freedom that’s been modernized to convey the realities of U.S. expat life.
We may not all be able to live in one place, but we can all share a flag.
So, here’s your flag:
There is but one star on our flag to represent our state of 8 million expats. It is cast to the side of the white and red strips to signify that we have left the shores and borders of our birth nation, seeking shelter, liberty and prosperity outside the reach of the United States.
The star of our expat flag is blue to represent vigilance, perseverance and justice that we seek as U.S. citizens in our host nations.
The red and white stripes pay homage to the colonies as we ourselves act as colonists in other nations. Red signifies the hardiness we inherited from our forefathers and previous generations. The white stripes represent the peace with which we bring into other nations.
The vast backdrop of white that surrounds our star signifies the distance that stands between us and homeland Americans.
This flag is a statement of our American reality. Wear it as a symbol of expat pride. Wear it as a statement of your united individuality.
You are the star of this flag in every sense of the word. Wear it as your own personal symbol of freedom.
It’s your freedom of expression.
It’s your freedom of the pursuit of happiness.
It’s your symbol of what makes you equal among all other American expats.
Founder, American Expat Apparel