Saturday, November 04, 2006

Fly your flags America!(part 3)

Yesterday I got word that in yet another community in America, yet another American is being "allowed" to fly your flag with pride.

You may ask WHY I used quotation marks around the word allowed. Simple. Across your fair land, certain HOA(Home Owners Associations) are challenging YOUR right to fly your flag in the manner you deem appropriate. Some of my regular readers (all 6 of you at last count - and family doesn't count!) will remember a while back a HOA in middle America decided to tell a home owner that he couldn't fly the flag he had fought for. Whatever! The rallying cry went out, and very early one morning I called the President of that particular HOA to ask him to confirm the rumours I had heard waaaaay up here in the north. To say the pres was surprised that his little group's behaviour had made it this far, and that THIS writer was going to write about it, would be an understatement! (He was also confused, since I DO speak with a Brit accent. I had to explain a couple of times that no, I was not calling from England! Just one more little chuckle for me!)

When asked if the rumour that his little fiefdom(no I didn't use that word when talking to him - 'unbiased' ya was denying ANY American their basic right to proudly fly the flag as a show of patrioric allegiance was true, he vociferously denied such rumour. When asked if I could quote him, on the record, as never denying anyone their freedoms, he said "of course". My reply? "Phew - for a minute there I was really concerned that the America I love and respect had undergone a radical transformation", and I thanked him for setting the record straight. I then passed on this good news!!!

Just a couple of weeks ago I received an email from Kat. Seems yet another HOA was trying to tell the son of a Vietnam vet that he could not fly HIS flag in the manner of HIS choice within the community. It seems that in Atlanta some people hadn't yet heard about law H.R 42. So, this foreigner decided to enlighten them! I have done quite a bit of research into this issue and this law, so felt sorta qualified to speak on it. Again early in the morning I put a call in to the president of the offending (offensive?) HOA. Two emails later, and still no response from him to my simple query, I upped the ante you might say! An email copied to all members of the board, telling them that as I was almost finished my article (which I planned to distribute within Canada), I really would like some comments from him. THIS writer believes in balanced reporting ya know!!!

No soooner had I hit 'send' than I got a call. It seems the president and his cohorts didn't want to talk to me, so had passed on my request to the firm that acts as 'general counsel' to this particular HOA. I won't bore you with the details of the 'lecture' I got as this very learned lawyer attempted to edumacate this ignorant alien. Let's just say, good job I don't have video phones. (way too tech for Even as I was chuckling at this guy, two things stuck out in his responses; and YES I did take exact notes. One: He insisted that this was "not about the flag". His words. He also said and I quote "this is about rules". Uhuh..I didn't interrupt him - much - he was on a roll...Second: He insisted that the "HOA does ALLOW ( my emphasis), the flying of the flag in a specific manner, but not in the manner currently under contention". Just before the 'conversation' (using the term loosely y'all understand!)ended, I DID tell him that I guess the supreme court would decide for him if this was or was not about the flag. To hear the home owner tell his story (which was also picked up by a major Atlanta newspaper), this issue most definitely IS about the flag. And yes, under law H.R42 which became law in America back in July, any one of you can fly your flag any way you choose.

Yesterday I got an email from the home owner. It seems he had been called to a meeting of the HOA to discuss this issue. I had asked to be kept informed. Well America, no matter that HR42 tells you you can fly your flag, it is enshrined in law, now the HOA in Avery Park says you can too. The email I got was short and sweet: We won! Party time.

I haven't seen the Minutes of that meeting yet but really I don't need to. Yet again, common sense and respect have prevailed.

Here we are in a time of war. Your countrymen and women are fighting under your flag. Fighting for the ideals your flag represents. It saddens me that even so, you still have fellow Americans deciding when and HOW you can fly the symbol of your country's history. For now though, score another one for the good guys. MY dream is that one day you won't have to fight within your own borders for such basic rights. But, if you need me, I WILL continue the fight with each of you, to defend your rights.. NEXT!

"And the star-spangled banner in triumph doth wave
O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave."

posted by alien brat


Georgia Blogger