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At May’s end, Rhode Island news sources began covering a minor disagreement in the town of Coventry over the display of American flags on fire trucks. The Associated Press reported earlier in the year that firefighters had been asked to remove their flags from their fire trucks.
A passage from that article reads:
The firefighters say [the controversy] started last year when Central Coventry Fire District Chairman Fred Gralinski likened their display of the flags on the back of the trucks to something the Islamic State group would do.
Gralinski apologized, saying he chose his words poorly.
David Gorman, president of the firefighters’ union local, says the district board recently adopted a policy that the fire chief must approve any stickers or decals applied on the trucks.
He says the policy made no mention of flags, but he’s still being asked in private to remove them.
Gralinski says there’s no order to remove the flags.
Citizens of the town donated the Fire Department a new flag pole and flag in support of the firemen and their movement, while a US Navy sailor dropped off 4 new flags for the department to fly.
In June 2016, the issue truly came to light as a YouTube video was posted showcasing what is reportedly Fire District Chairman Fred Gralinski’s voice, comparing displays of patriotism to those of Islamic State (ISIS) members:
They look like a bunch of yahoos … Like in the paper, like ISIS in Syria going to take over a city. I don’t think they need that big flag on the back of the truck. That’s not America to me. Those are a bunch of terrorists. So I’m going to ask you to take the flag off that truck.
Patch pulled the following information from a news release issued by fire district manager Gayle Coorigan:
In a news release, [Corrigan] also said that the district “has equipped all of its fire apparatus with new American flags that replaced old, tattered and dirty flags which were on the trucks.”
“I’d like to thank Tony DeQuattro of Operation Stand Down-Rhode Island for providing us with the correct protocols to ensure American flags on our fire trucks are afforded the respect they deserve,” Corrigan said. “I would also like to thank the taxpayers who brought the issue of dirty and dingy flags on our trucks to our attention and questioned us about proper flag etiquette. We now believe our trucks are in compliance.”
As of 6 June 2016, the controversy has reached its end and firefighters in Rhode Island will once again be allowed to fly their American Flags on their fire trucks.
How do you feel about the Fire District Chairman likening our fire trucks to that of ISIS propaganda? Let us know in the comments below.
Do you know where your American Flags are made?
The weeks leading from Flag Day to the 4th of July are generally the busiest of the year in the flag industry. But are your US flags made in America?
While many buy flags based on price rather than quality, they don’t realize where those cheaper flags are made. Do you know where your American flag is made?
Even after 9/11, over $4 million dollars worth of American flags are still imported from outside the country each year. That is a significant number of U.S. flags being sold that are not being ‘ Made in America ’.
Sadly there is still no U.S. law against Chinese companies selling American flags in America.
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The United States Army celebrated its 241st birthday on June 14, Flag Day, with a traditional cake cutting and celebration.
Following the local events at each Army base around the country, there is also a wreath laying ceremony at Arlington National Cemetery; Capitol Hill Cake Cutting on June 15; Pentagon Cake Cutting on June 16th; Army Staff Run on June 17; and the Army Birthday Ball on June 18.
In 1775, Congress established the Continental Army which consisted of 22,000 militiamen from outside of Boston and 5,000 from New York. Congress named George Washington as commander-in-chief of the Continental Army the next day.
Adopted on 12 June 195 by U.S. President Dwight D. Eisenhower, The U.S. Army flag features a blue replica of the War Office Seal on a white field. Under the seal is a scarlet scroll reading “United States Army”. Beneath the scroll is the founding year, 1775.
The Army is older than the country it serves! With America not being officially established until July 4, 1776, the Army was created an entire year before to combat the British attack in Boston.
If the Army’s soldiers created their own city, it would be the 10th largest in the United States. There are over 1 million serving soldiers in the U.S. Army. Nearly half that number is on active duty and serving full time, while the other half are National Guard and Army reserves.
The Army is the second-largest employer after Walmart. While budget cuts will bring soldier numbers down to 1,042,200, the Army still beats third place runner Yum Brands which only has around 523,000.
Happy Birthday, U.S. Army! Want to purchase an Army or American flag? Click here!