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I made a kite once for an oversized Australian sound engineer. White paper on crossed dowels, with a painting of a kangaroo and a raccoon dancing under the Big Dipper (Northern hemisphere) and the Southern Cross (Southern hemisphere). Inter-hemispherical friendship and harmony! That was the message of the kite.

I still miss that kite.

The Southern Cross is a very subtle constellation. It’s only 4 stars in a diamond shape. Still, it is beautiful. And for Northern hemisphere dwellers like me, it’s rare and far away, so I treasure the memory of seeing those stars, the Southern Cross, so far away from home.

Except that in the US the Southern Cross also means the Confederate Flag, which to this overeducated Northern Jew whitey race-traitor means KKK and white supremacy, organized or more casual. It’s a stereotype, and it’s also simultaneously a social fact. The Confederate flag has meaning because of how the symbol is used: the social life of an object, if you will.
More… “Southern Cross”

Carolyn Chernoff is a sociologist and cultural worker. She is the co-founder of the Girls’ DJ Collective, and rose to brief infamy last year as “The sociologist of Miley Cyrus.” Her work examines the ways that everyday culture reproduces social inequality. Chernoff sporadically blogs on culture and meaning at popwithpolitics.tumblr.com.

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