Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Symbolism and the HHS

    The American flag is the most enduring and recognizable symbol of the United States, and there is a long list of laws, regulations, and recommendations (widely flouted) regarding its use and display.  However, the flag is only one of many symbols our government uses.  Most departments have their own logos and symbols, and the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is no exception.

    HHS takes quite seriously the use (and misuse) of its identifiers.  An entire page on the HHS website is dedicated to "HHS Logo, Seal and Symbol Policies."  Here is the seal:

    Most of the regulations are common sense and fairly mundane, but I found the closing section describing the HHS eagle symbol especially interesting in light of HHS's oversight of the implementation of ObamaCare and the ever-expanding nanny-state:

HHS SymbolThe symbol is the key element in Department identification. The symbol represents the American People sheltered in the wing of the American Eagle, suggesting the Department’s concern and responsibility for the welfare of the people. 
This symbol is the visual link which connects the graphic communications of all components and programs of the Department. It is the major design component for the Department Identifiers - the Department Logo, Seal, and Signatures. 
The symbol can never be altered and must always be positioned with the eagle facing left...

    Facing left, eh?  That may very well be the most symbolic element of all.

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