Flipping the Bird


Flipping the Bird, which goes by many different names, has a long history:

The origin of this gesture is highly speculative, but is quite possibly thousands of years old. It is identified as the digitus impudicus (“impudent finger”) in Ancient Roman writings and reference is made to using the finger in the Ancient Greek comedy The Clouds by Aristophanes. It was defined there as a gesture intended to insult another.[2]

Lord Black however is in good company in expressing his opinion in this manner. Pierre Trudeau‘s famous “Salmon Finger” and Ralph Klein are well-known Canadians who have exploited the silent gesture.

Internationally, Wong Yi Wang (Chinese: 黃宜弘), a member of the Legislative Council of Hong Kong, George W. Bush President of the United States and Mirek Topolánek, prime minister of the Czech republic to name a few.

Legally, at least in the US, it seems projecting the finger by a citizen, though distasteful, is not usually chargeable unless it has some sexual innuendo or is disrespectful to a judge. On the other hand, if issued by a police officer the same is not true. [3]

The actual execution (how to) is described here.


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