Can anyone explain why political red and blue have different meanings in the UK and US?

@indexer (780)
Leicester, England
October 11, 2015 5:16am CST
In the United Kingdom the colour of the right-of-centre Conservative Party is Blue and that of the left-of-centre Labour Party is red. However, in the United States, although the roughly-centre Democratic party uses the colour blue, the way-off-to-the-right Republican Party fights under the colour red! We all know that the United Stated is a very odd country in many ways, but this seems to be one of the odder aspects. Red is traditionally the colour of left-wing politics - it is the dominant colour of the flags of many Communist countries including China and the former Soviet Union. The British Labour Party sings "The Party's flag is deepest red" at the end of its annual conferences. And yet, in the United States, it is the ultra-right Republican Party, which even thinks that Barack Obama is a Socialist, that uses the colour of Socialism and revolution as its symbol. Why?
6 people like this
5 responses
@topffer (30685)
• France
11 Oct 15
Maybe you should find your response in the symbolic of colors of the US flag. This quote is attributed to Charles Thomson, who was secretary of the Continental Congress : "White signifies purity and innocence, Red, hardiness & valour, and Blue, the color of the Chief (the broad band above the stripes) signifies vigilance, perseverance & justice." I don't tell that valor is a value of right parties and justice a value of left parties, but...
Find answers to common and uncommon questions about the United States Flag and its evolution. Information on Flag etiquette and the U.S. Flag Code. Patriotic poems, hymns, and essays.
2 people like this
@indexer (780)
• Leicester, England
11 Oct 15
It is surprising how many countries have red, white and blue as the sole colours on their flags - the USA, UK and France among them. I'm not sure that they all see the same symbolism being represented.
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@topffer (30685)
• France
11 Oct 15
@indexer Certainly not for France. The actual flag came during the French Revolution at the end of the 18th C. The red and the blue are the colors of the city of Paris where the revolution started, and the white was the color of the king.
@indexer (780)
• Leicester, England
11 Oct 15
@topffer How interesting that the royal colour continued in the centre of the flag.
1 person likes this
• Austin, Texas
12 Oct 15
Can't explain why. But the UK is probably right! Cause according to my husband, who was raised under British influence, Americans are wrong about everything! We don't speak the right English. We drive on the wrong side of the road. So it figures that we mixed up the colors when it came to politics too!
@PhredWreck (6095)
11 Oct 15
Because we learned from the mistakes of the British and do it the right way.
@indexer (780)
• Leicester, England
11 Oct 15
@PhredWreck Yes - I did do a bit of American history at school and do recall that the history of American political parties is somewhat complicated. However, do any Republicans ever comment on the fact that their colour is that of world Socialism?!
1 person likes this
@indexer (780)
• Leicester, England
11 Oct 15
@indexer Too American for me? I am fascinated by all things American - sometimes horrified, sometimes amused, often deeply puzzled!
11 Oct 15
@indexer I am often horrified, unfortunately. It's a great country with some severe problems.
@dawnald (84156)
• Shingle Springs, California
11 Oct 15
I thought it was odd also.
@LadyDuck (122261)
• Switzerland
11 Oct 15
About the colour red you are right, even in Italy it is the colour of the left wings. There is surely a reason, I think to remember we studied this at school.