Far be it from me to question the Master, but this statement puzzles me: “To forestall embarrassing inquiries the park was recently given the unobjectionable (because meaningless) name Six Flags St. Louis.”
How is that name meaningless? It’s a brand name followed by a location, just like “Sea World Orlando”, “Universal Studios Hollywood”, and “The Second City Toronto”. Just because Orlando isn’t nearly as big as a World, and Toronto would have to be at best the Third City, doesn’t make those names meaningless.
The original amusement park in the chain is “Six Flags Over Texas;” that name has never applied to any but that one park, and carries with it the significance of the political entities Cecil mentions. I may be mistaken, but I believe the original intent was to reflect Texas being unique in the number of countries of which it has been part.
In its expansion through construction and acquisition, many of the company’s properties are identified as “Six Flags Something-or-other.” In the company logo, the six flags are colorful pennants, not the flags of six political entities.
Thus, other than the legacy connection with the original park, “Six Flags,” in and of itself, has no meaning outside of Texas.