The Power of Flags

and the World of Adult Male Spanking
Bad Lads, Strict Sirs,
Go to content

The Power of Flags

Bad Lads, Strict Sirs
Published by Justin & Trevor in History · Friday 01 Sep 2023
Tags: History
The Power of Flags
         “I decided that we should have a flag, that a flag fit us as a symbol, that we are a people, a tribe if you will. And flags are about proclaiming power, so it’s very appropriate."

~Gilbert Baker, Designer of the “Rainbow” Gay Pride Flag
In the 1970’s, Kansas native and veteran Gilbert Baker relocated to San Francisco, California, where he became involved with a variety of political causes. Fond of that unique style of attire worn by 1970's rock icons, he learned to sew so he could create his own outfits. He also used his skills to create banners for political demonstrations. His friends encouraged him to design a representation of the gay community to replace the pink triangle, which had overtones of Nazi oppression (as it was the symbol that gay men were required to wear in concentration camps). Harvey Milk, a trailblazing and openly gay San Francisco City Council member who was assassinated later that year, provided him with a stipend and request to come up with something new. In 1978, Baker unveiled the rainbow flag, which was featured in that year’s San Francisco Gay Freedom Day parade. Since then, there have been numerous revisions to the pride flag, but its rainbow colors remain a constant element. Indeed, as Baker’s comment suggests, it has become a symbolic force of power.

         “I felt that the time was right for the Leather men and women who have been participating in these same parades and events more and more visibly in recent years, to have a similar simple, elegant banner that would serve as a symbol of  their own identity and interests.”
~Tony DeBlase, Designer of the Leather Pride Flag.
At the 1989 International Mr. Leather event in Chicago, and on the 20th anniversary of the Stonewall riots that advanced the fledgling gay rights movement in the United States, Tony DeBlase unveiled a flag for the Leather community. As he explained, its purpose was to recognize the unique group that comprised the Leather community. DeBlase was already well-known in the community, and in fact, two years later he was a co-founder of the Leather Archives and Museum. The flag was his own design, as he felt a committee would lead to angst about whom to include or not, and a competition would leave resentment for designs not chosen. In fact, DeBlase consistently demurred when asked what the flag symbolized, encouraging its viewers to find their own meanings and celebrating them when they did. Over time, the flag has come to represent not just Leather, but also the broader kink and BDSM communities.
A Flag for Male-Male Spanking

Flags have continued to emerge for even more specific kink communities, including puppy play, ageplay, ABDL, master and slave play, rubber and latex play, and more. However, one notable omission is a flag for the spanking kink, and particularly male-male spanking.

We offer a new flag in celebration of our community.


We offer this flag as a recognition of our interest; our presence; to celebrate that which unifies us as spankos.

We offer this flag so we may see ourselves, our unique selves, and recognize that we are, in fact, enough; we can be who we are and express it with pride.

We offer this flag as a gift. And it is just that - an offer for your consideration, and we do not wish to demand that its meaning be limited to what we have suggested.

We do hope, however, that the flag may shine as a beacon of pride, acceptance, and recognition for what so many of us value so dearly - we are spankos, and we celebrate that.

We have chosen to symbolize aspects of the male spanking community through the design of the flag. The six stripes represent an acrostic that spells the word, SPANKS.
The upper left-hand corner includes a uniquely designed emblem symbolizing male spanking. Set against a black background of enjoyable kink and consensual pain, the symbol in fuchsia represents our male spanking community. The holes in the paddle are not only decorative, but are a homage to the BDSM triskele (if you know, you know; if not, look it up). They also demonstrate that we can allow the light of our kink to shine through our lives.

S is for Spanking. We are, after all, spankos at heart. In the days of “flagging,” with the hanky code described earlier in this book, spanking was represented by the color fuchsia, the first stripe in the flag.
P is for Pain. In the BDSM world, as well as in flagging, the color black is associated with pain, and is the second stripe in the flag.
A is for Authority. In spanking play, authority is frequently a key part of a scene, whether in a Dom/sub relationship, roleplay, discipline for real issues, domestic discipline relationships, or other dynamics. Blue is historically a color that represents authority, and is the third stripe in the flag.
N is for Individual Explorations, recognizing that this takes some phonetic liberties. While we are a community - and an amazing community - we support each other in putting our own, unique spin on spanking play and on seeking connections between spanking and our other kinks. Seeing this as a blank slate on which we can write our own spanking stories, white is the fourth stripe in the flag. We also acknowledge the black, blue, and white pairing as an homage to the Leather pride flag.
K is for Kink. We are kinksters, after all, finding our place within the broader kink community. Black has historically represented kink play, and provides a nice parallel between the second and fifth stripes of the flag.
S is for Safety. Our play must be safe, and we take careful effort in making it so. Green is widely acknowledged as a color representing safety, and it is the sixth stripe.

You may freely download a JPG version of the flag from the site's "contact us" page for your personal social media, websites and marketing items.

There are no reviews yet.

Back to content