Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Ready-to-Burn Flag

Burn flags pre-treated for safe flammability
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As we all know, it is essential to be careful when dealing with open flames. A single careless accident can take lives, or damage property, as well as endanger rescuers and firefighters. Fire is important, we don't want to eliminate it from our lives; we just want to be cautious.

Therefore, given that flag-burning is reasonably popular among certain dissatisfied elements, protesting governments and so forth, a flag that burns in an appropriately showy, yet safe manner should be developed. This could likely be accomplished by using textiles and dyes that don't produce thick, obscuring and unhealthy smoke (definately shouldn't be toxic!), and treating the whole affair with some accellerants. Perhaps two, one to quickly spread the fire (perhaps not across the entire flag, so that it remains partially visible, for better impact), and a second that slowly reduces it to a safe, non-toxic ash that can be easily swept up or washed away. (just because someone's burning a flag is no excuse for being a litterbug or polluter) The accellerant(s) shouldn't catch fire by anything but an open flame, however. If one happens to sit on a shelf for some time, we don't want a situation where it becomes dangerously unstable, after all. People think of flags normally as being non-perishable, and we'll stick with that.

The flag should be attached to a lengthy, non flammable handle. A small hand guard on the handle might be useful in case of falling ash. However, the included instructions should warn against holding the lit flag above oneself!

I suspect that a small fuse would be useful, so that the people lighting it don't have to stand dangerously close, and so that there's a bit of a delay during which they can step back. A pack of a couple of matches, and safety instructions should round out the package. (it's probably deeply embarrassing to forget to bring matches, or a lighter when doing this, and it's always best for one's customers to find one helpful)

cpt kangarooski, Mar 09 2002

The dangers of flag burning, illustrated http://homepage.mac...ce/SavedNewsPhotos/
Just the sort of safety hazard this is intended to prevent [cpt kangarooski, Mar 09 2002, last modified Oct 04 2004]

[link]






       I think it's a great idea (and really crazy too). Idealy the flag could be made of cotton treated with Nitcric acid to make both clean and fast burning. The image of neat plastic bags for sale -each containing a flag of some size and seperate binary igniter (like safety matches) for ease of use, is an intersting one.
Mr_Thundercleese, Mar 09 2002
  

       Nitcric acid, is that what they use for headlice?
po, Mar 09 2002
  

       I hope they don't! It would really hurt and turn the scalp yellow.
Mr_Thundercleese, Mar 09 2002
  
      
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