Upside down American flag seized by police

Discussion in 'Law and Justice System' started by Sunni Man, Jul 11, 2009.

  1. Sunni Man
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    Sunni Man Diamond Member

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    WAUSAU, Wis. – An American flag flown upside down as a protest in a northern Wisconsin village was seized by police before a Fourth of July parade and the businessman who flew it — an Iraq war veteran — claims the officers trespassed and stole his property.

    A day after the parade, police returned the flag and the man's protest — over a liquor license — continued.

    The American Civil Liberties Union of Wisconsin is considering legal action against the village of Crivitz for violating Vito Congine Jr.'s' First Amendment rights, Executive Director Chris Ahmuty said.

    "It is not often that you see something this blatant," Ahmuty said.

    In mid-June, Congine, 46, began flying the flag upside down — an accepted way to signal distress — outside the restaurant he wants to open in Crivitz, a village of about 1,000 people some 65 miles north of Green Bay.

    He said his distress is likely bankruptcy because the village board refused to grant him a liquor license after he spent nearly $200,000 to buy and remodel a downtown building for an Italian supper club.

    Congine's upside-down-flag represents distress to him; to others in town, it represents disrespect of the flag.

    Hours before a Fourth of July parade, four police officers went to Congine's property and removed the flag under the advice of Marinette County District Attorney Allen Brey.

    Neighbor Steven Klein watched in disbelief.

    "I said, 'What are you doing?' Klein said. "They said, 'It is none of your business.'"

    The next day, police returned the flag.

    Brey declined comment Friday.

    Marinette County Sheriff Jim Kanikula said it was not illegal to fly the flag upside down but people were upset and it was the Fourth of July.

    "It is illegal to cause a disruption," he said.

    The parade went on without any problems, Kanikula said.

    Village President John Deschane, 60, an Army veteran who served in Vietnam, said many people in town believe it's disrespectful to fly the flag upside down.

    "If he wants to protest, let him protest but find a different way to do it," Deschane said.

    Congine, a Marine veteran who served in Iraq in 2004, said he intends to keep flying the flag upside down.

    "It is pretty bad when I go and fight a tyrannical government somewhere else," Congine said, "and then I come home to find it right here at my front door."

    www.AP.com
     
  2. Smartt33
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    Smartt33 Senior Member

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    The man did nothing wrong, and the village government did everything wrong.
     
  3. Diuretic
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    Diuretic Permanently confused

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    DA=stupid
    Cops=at fault for not realising DA=stupid
     
  4. CrimsonWhite
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    CrimsonWhite *****istrator Emeritus Supporting Member

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    Bullshit. Flying the flag upside is a desecration to the flag. This man was not under distress, he was protesting in a way that would have shown a great amount of disrespect to our flag on a day when he, as a veteran, should have been honoring that flag and what he and those before him fought for. Fuck this guy, he should have known better.
     
  5. RodISHI
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    RodISHI Gold Member

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    Nope it is historically and traditional well known flying the flag upside down is a distress call.

     
  6. CrimsonWhite
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    CrimsonWhite *****istrator Emeritus Supporting Member

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    I bolded the part that is not from the link you provided. I assume it is opinion, correct?

    I recognized in my post that it is a distress call, but he wasn't under any distress. He isn't using it to bring notice to veterans rights, he is protesting the fact that he can't have a god damned liquor license. It was disrespectful. He knows it. The cops knew it, I know it and you know it.

    When not in actual distress, flying the flag upside down is a desecration.
     
  7. Diuretic
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    Diuretic Permanently confused

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    But is it a criminal offence?
     
  8. CrimsonWhite
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    CrimsonWhite *****istrator Emeritus Supporting Member

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    Were criminal charges filed?
     
  9. Diuretic
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    Diuretic Permanently confused

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    I have no idea. But that doesn't address my question - you said flying the flag upside down is a desecration. That's as may be, but is it a criminal offence in Wisconsin? If it is then the DA and police acted properly; if it isn't then the DA and police didn't act properly.
     
  10. RodISHI
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    RodISHI Gold Member

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    Who decides what is distress? That is where the problem lies. Not to long ago here in Iowa in a small town a man's property was being stolen from him. He displayed the flag upside down. He was arrested for flying the flag as a distress call. The arrest did not stand. All it did arrested that man "a veteran" was show what our society has become as far as some are concerned. Theft from a citizen is okay dokey if one agrees with what is happening regardless of the law.

    Flag Code


    If y'all are going to be so picky about the flag then get after the importers that are not licensed to copy the flag. Is your flag an official flag? Is it an American made flag? If so you have every right legally to fly your legally made American flag upside down when you feel you life, freedom or property is in danger.
     

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veterans call for flags to fly upside down july 4th 2015