Since Springfield adopted a new city flag earlier this week, speculation has run rampant online debating whether it was approved during a city council meeting or an episode of NBC's "Parks and Recreation."
The comparison comes as a viral online compilation of comments made at a Monday evening Springfield City Council meeting reveals some believe the new flag might represent the head of Baphomet, part of a Masonic conspiracy or is akin to banners flying the swastika.
At the Monday meeting, an assortment of residents weighed in on whether to adopt the light blue and white "compass crown" flag that has unofficially represented the Queen City since 2017 or keep the red, white and blue flag that has represented Springfield since 1938.
The city council eventually opted to adopt the new flag in a 7-2 vote.
In the days since the vote, a compilation video of those opposed to the new flag went viral on social media, garnering more than 5,000 likes on Twitter as of publication.
The head of Baphomet? Pro-Masonic imagery? Springfield's new flag faces criticism
"My hometown had a city council meeting about changing the city flag and it turned into an episode of Parks and Rec," wrote comedian Chance Nichols on Twitter.
"Basically what we're dealing with is a group that is pro Masonic," said one resident in the compilation. "If you consider, you know, the compass rose and you kind of ask the question, why did they use a compass rose?"
Another resident compared the new flag to the one used in Nazi Germany.
"I'm sure you all are familiar with my homeland flag, all red with a black swastika. How would you all feel if a bunch of businesses were flying that flag and Springfield, check your emotional response to these words."
But many sharing the post glommed onto the suggestion the flag might be an abstract representation of Satan.
"The main black and white emblem is an abstracted Baphomet head in my opinion. Basically, it's like the artist has cleverly manipulated the positive and negative space of black and white space," said one speaker. "Google a Baphomet head on Google and compare it to that emblem. Okay, you will see a Baphomet with a crown."
Comparisons to 'Parks and Rec,' a mock-up of a Baphomet head on the flag
Many social media users said residents were reading too much into the symbolism of the new flag.
"Who knew the new flag for Springfield was really a cleverly disguised Rorschach test?" wrote one user.
"I think he’s on to something with the Baphomet head. Is it too late to amend the new flag?" wrote another.
Since the Baphomet head is not included in the original design of the flag, some decided to remake the flag to include occult iconography.
But most of all, the compilation reminded those on social media of episodes of "Parks and Recreation," a sitcom about local government that often highlighted the strange things some say to locally elected officials.
"It's funny how people thought... scenes in Parks And Rec were too crazy to believable," wrote one user.
"People don’t realize how much of Parks and Rec is barely satire. People are really like that," wrote another.
An official ceremony retiring the old flag and raising the new will take place in March.
This article originally appeared on Springfield News-Leader: Criticisms of Springfield's new city flag compiled in Twitter video