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Southern Lewisville Homeowner Vandalized Over Upside-Down Flag

Local News, Notes and Events
Posted by LewisvilleTexan on 2012/3/18 14:30:00 (1638 reads)

Open in new windowA homeowner in Southern Lewisville who has flown an upside-down U.S. flag in her yard since May of last year came out this morning to find her flag stolen, and her sidewalk vandalized with an intimidating message.

The small flag had been displayed from a short black metal stand only a few feet high in her front yard. The flag and stand had been taken, and the message "GOD Bless America Faggot" had been scrawled in sidewalk chalk on the front walkway, facing the house. The homeowner, who did not want to be named, lives with her sister and speculates the perpetrator might think the two are gay.

The homeowner, says that she put the flag upside-down after the action of Congress that created the "Super Congress" (United States Congress Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction). She views the act as unconstitutional, usurping the powers the constitution provides for.

She believes this is a step is part of an agenda begun in 1913 with the creation of the Federal Reserve. She said that the Fed, the Bank of England, and the Bank of Rome are in cahoots for a grand agenda of "socialization", furthering the U.N. Agenda 21, which uses "sustainability terminology" to bring about the goal of eliminating the middle class and enslave everyone to the owners of the world's wealth.


The homeowner believes the Obama agenda is to "small up" America. "He's not an American. He wants to put America in [what he thinks is] its proper place, not as a leader in the world, but as an equal to other nations," she said. The woman, who says she has been studying all of this for the past 7 years, knows that it all sounds "tin foil hat", but she thinks people are in denial because the knowledge of the truth implies a duty to take action. She thinks that someone will do something to stop the upcoming November elections, and that gasoline will be $6 per gallon by mid-summer, which will cause a "disturbance" of some sort.

The homeowner viewed the incident not only as theft and vandalism, but as a violation of her first amendment rights to freedom of speech, and as a hate crime. She said the message left was hypocritical and unintelligent.

Since putting out the flag, she says that unknown people have uprighted it a couple of times. Once, a neighbor came to her house to ask if she needed assistance. She said that the upside-down flag is a distress signal that literally means "Come armed to my assistance". She said that the ex-military neighbor showed up, but that she didn't know if he was armed.

The handwriting with the chalk appeared to be female writing, but the homeowner had no ideas who might have done the vandalism. She mentioned that her dog was alerted last night between 8:30 and 9:15 p.m. and that she heard a car with a loud exhaust drive off quickly. The homeowner planned to call the police.

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Runfellow
Posted: 2012/3/18 14:36  Updated: 2012/3/18 14:36
Guest Columnist (Verified User)
Joined: 2011/3/17
From: Lewisville, TX
Posts: 294
 Re: Southern Lewisville Homeowner Vandalized Over Upside-...
Not even stupid people deserve to have their stuff vandalized.
-BC
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Anonymous
Posted: 2012/3/18 20:25  Updated: 2012/3/18 20:57
 Re: Southern Lewisville Homeowner Vandalized Over Upside-...
It's telling that you went right to "stupid" rather than "a different point of view I disagree with".
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Anonymous
Posted: 2012/3/18 22:33  Updated: 2012/3/18 22:38
 Re: Southern Lewisville Homeowner Vandalized Over Upside-...
It's telling that you are replying to these posts as it gives the appearance that you are the homeowner. Sorry that you aren't getting the sympathy and support that you wanted on here but I think you will find that there are very few people that support your "different point of view I disagree with".
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Anonymous
Posted: 2012/3/18 14:53  Updated: 2012/3/18 14:57
 Re: Southern Lewisville Homeowner Vandalized Over Upside-...
Chalk on a sidewalk is hardly vandalism. Taking the flag is illegal but would probably only warrant a Class C misdemeanor for a small, cheap flag if someone is caught in the act or it can be proven that they did it. It isn't right to take things that don't belong to you but I can understand why this woman flying the flag upside down disturbs people. It truly is a distress signal that shouldn't be done lightly. However, people righting it or coming over to talk to her about her distress only feeds what she wanted...attention. The use of the word "faggot" isn't appropriate but I would bet that whomever did this wasn't commenting on her living with her sister. I would bet that the people used the word as a slur for someone doing something disrespectful with the flag and is hardly a hate crime. Clearly a whack job who realizes that her ideas are tin foil hat ideas. I would imagine the 7 years of research have been conducted mainly or in whole on the internet where everything is true. She is certainly entitled to her opinion but don't do something like fly the flag upside down without expecting some repercussions.
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WhosPlayin
Posted: 2012/3/18 16:26  Updated: 2012/3/18 16:26
Editor
Joined: 2008/12/12
From:
Posts: 3919
 Re: Southern Lewisville Homeowner Vandalized Over Upside-...
I do suppose that chalk is about the least damaging of the forms of vandalism. I guess they could have left a post-it note. But yeah, this one will be solved by the coming rains.

I thought that the "GOD Bless" and "Faggot" in the same sentence that was the most ironic. Whoever wrote it sees religion more as an identity than a personal spiritual path.
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Runfellow
Posted: 2012/3/18 20:08  Updated: 2012/3/18 20:08
Guest Columnist (Verified User)
Joined: 2011/3/17
From: Lewisville, TX
Posts: 294
 Re: Southern Lewisville Homeowner Vandalized Over Upside-...
Now is also a good time to mention that we would all be a little better off if we followed the flag code properly.

For example, I know a certain member of the Lewisville City Council who blatantly disregards this particular part of the code:
Quote:
The flag should never be used for advertising purposes in any manner whatsoever.


I don't blame the average person for not knowing about the intricacies of the code, but when someone constantly refers to him/herself as a "patriot" it gets a irritating to see the this kind of jingoism all over the place.

It's also nice to see when people get it right. The Lewisville Fire Department, for example, on the 9/11 anniversary event, raised the flag to the top of the mast before lowering it to half-mast. No doubt many people thought they made a mistake at first, but it's that attention to detail that helps people understand that it's more than three colors on a fabric.
-BC
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Anonymous
Posted: 2012/3/18 20:56  Updated: 2012/3/18 20:58
 Re: Southern Lewisville Homeowner Vandalized Over Upside-...
I can't believe that you are suggesting that this family deserves to have their property stolen and vandalized!!!!
"She is certainly entitled to her opinion but don't do something like fly the flag upside down without expecting some repercussions"
Expecting that protest speech will likely meet with opposition isn't an invitation to strangers to violate one's property! Just because the rhetoic was childlike and in chalk and just because it was simple doesn't make it less innocuous than spray painting hate filled slurs. A reasonable expectation would be a chatty encounter inquiring about the flag status. The vandal is an ignorant coward and doesn't deserve the softened judgement this thread is currently running.
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Anonymous
Posted: 2012/3/18 22:30  Updated: 2012/3/18 22:38
 Re: Southern Lewisville Homeowner Vandalized Over Upside-...
As I said, taking the flag was wrong but writing in chalk that can be hosed off of the sidewalk is far from vandalism. It is nothing in comparison to costly paint removal. It wasn't hate speech either, IMHO, but let's wave that card around to see who bites! No one was preventing free speech because flying a flag upside down isn't speech. I also wasn't defending the actions of the perpetrators. As I pointed out, they were wrong to take the flag and I am sure the homeowner will just get another flag and do the same disrespectful thing again. If you want to talk "childlike", why not talk about a grown woman that believes crazy conspiracy theories, does something so childish as to fly a distress signal to elicit a response and then jumps to claim that she is a victim of hate speech, vandalism, etc. when she got the reaction that she wanted. I truly laugh that you say that the vandal is a coward since the homeowner doesn't want her name divulged. She's "brave enough" to fly the flag upside down but not to reveal her name. Funny! It makes me wonder if you are the homeowner based on how vehemently you replied. I'm done here. I have to wrap my tin foil hat tighter before I slip off to bed.
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WhosPlayin
Posted: 2012/3/18 23:14  Updated: 2012/3/18 23:14
Editor
Joined: 2008/12/12
From:
Posts: 3919
 Re: Southern Lewisville Homeowner Vandalized Over Upside-...
Without regard to how easy or difficult it is to remove the writing, I'd still call it vandalism. I had to look up the state law to see what it says though. Here's Texas Penal Code, Section 28.03:
Quote:
Sec. 28.03. CRIMINAL MISCHIEF. (a) A person commits an offense if, without the effective consent of the owner:
...
(3) he intentionally or knowingly makes markings, including inscriptions, slogans, drawings, or paintings, on the tangible property of the owner.
(b) Except as provided by Subsections (f) and (h), an offense under this section is:
(1) a Class C misdemeanor if:
(A) the amount of pecuniary loss is less than $50; or
(B) except as provided in Subdivision (3)(A) or (3)(B), it causes substantial inconvenience to others;


Hate crime is a matter of judgement, and I would imagine probably depends on what the vandal meant by "faggot". Here's the relevant section from the Code of Criminal Procedure:

Quote:
Art. 42.014. FINDING THAT OFFENSE WAS COMMITTED BECAUSE OF BIAS OR PREJUDICE. (a) In the trial of an offense under Title 5, Penal Code, or Section 28.02, 28.03, or 28.08, Penal Code, the judge shall make an affirmative finding of fact and enter the affirmative finding in the judgment of the case if at the guilt or innocence phase of the trial, the judge or the jury, whichever is the trier of fact, determines beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant intentionally selected the person against whom the offense was committed or intentionally selected property damaged or affected as a result of the offense because of the defendant's bias or prejudice against a group identified by race, color, disability, religion, national origin or ancestry, age, gender, or sexual preference.
(b) The sentencing judge may, as a condition of punishment, require attendance in an educational program to further tolerance and acceptance of others.
(c) In this article, "sexual preference" has the following meaning only: a preference for heterosexuality, homosexuality, or bisexuality.


If the vandal really thought the women were gay, even though they aren't, it would seem to me that it fits the "sexual preference" part of this. I'm sure a defense attorney would argue it the other way though.
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WhosPlayin
Posted: 2012/3/18 22:48  Updated: 2012/3/18 22:48
Editor
Joined: 2008/12/12
From:
Posts: 3919
 Re: Southern Lewisville Homeowner Vandalized Over Upside-...
I don't know that they're necessarily saying that. I don't think that pointing out probable consequences and the expectation of those consequences necessarily implies that those consequences are deserved.

I won't soften my judgement of the individuals who did this. I think it's very important to note that whoever did this violated someone's actual property and suppressed their free speech - two very tangible things - to defend an intangible symbol of the very American values that they violated.
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Poster Thread
Fighter
Posted: 2012/3/18 23:30  Updated: 2012/3/18 23:30
Joined: 2011/8/2
From: Lewisville
Posts: 7
 Re: Southern Lewisville Homeowner Vandalized Over Upside-...
Personally I made a comment about this back in September on Facebook that someone needed to take down the flag and believe me I really was going to, but I had to take a step back and think. I soon came to realize that it was just someone playing a joke or trying to create something out of nothing so I left the flag the way it was and ignored it.

I do have an issue flying the flag upside down. Personally to me it shows a lack of respect for your country regardless of whoever is running it. That person got voted in by America you may not like it but you should respect it.

The Sidewalk chalk was extremely childish and retarded regardless if the flag was flying upside down..I personally have never even seen anyone come out the front of the house let alone even drive that green car in front as it hasn't moved in months that I can remember.

My Thought would be that she leave the flag out of the front yard and put it in her back yard where only she can see it would benefit everyone as she does have a fence.
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Anonymous
Posted: 2012/3/19 9:28  Updated: 2012/3/19 11:03
 Re: Southern Lewisville Homeowner Vandalized Over Upside-...
I wasn't going to reply to this thread anymore but your use of the word "retarded" is offensive and I had to say something. I have a special needs child that has been called retarded by 7th graders his age. My son isn't "retarded". He has a health issue that has somewhat affected his cognitive abilities but he is healing. I've seen the hurt that word causes a generally very happy boy. The use of the R-word to describe what you deem as a stupid, childish act is demeaning to the thousands of differently-abled people in the world. It is no less a term of hate than faggot and n*gger. Please get your point across without being derisive to a whole class of people.
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Anonymous
Posted: 2012/3/19 15:43  Updated: 2012/3/19 19:33
 Re: Southern Lewisville Homeowner Vandalized Over Upside-...
it appears as if I've touched a cord with you......However I was implying to the actions done were retarded. I'm not saying he you over there look at you you look retarded. saying something like that I would understand your Grievance of me using that word to describe someone and not their actions. That was not an attack on your child. I also have to disagree with you regarding it meaning the same thing as the other 2 words you chose to say.
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Anonymous
Posted: 2012/3/20 7:18  Updated: 2012/3/20 7:52
 Re: Southern Lewisville Homeowner Vandalized Over Upside-...
Okay, one last reply here and I'm done. The word "retarded" should be stricken from our vocabularies as a whole. You conveyed your thought thoroughly when you said childish. The intent is the same whether you call someONE "retarded" or call their ACTION that. IMO, you are wrong regarding that word not being the same as the two I previously mentioned. They are all meant to hurt. If you want an actual comparison of the two, I ask you would you describe and action as "niggardly" or "gay"? If not, you shouldn't use "retarded" to describe an action either when there are other perfectly acceptable English words that can convey your meaning without making you sound like a heartless, uneducated person.
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Anonymous
Posted: 2012/3/21 10:21  Updated: 2012/3/21 13:04
 Re: Southern Lewisville Homeowner Vandalized Over Upside-...
Interesting side note -- the word "niggardly" actually has no connection to the racial slur even though the two words sound very much alike. The former predates the later by hundreds of years. In one high-profile situation about a decade ago, someone actually lost his job over this misunderstanding. Because of the similarity, and because many people confuse the two, it is best to avoid using the word. The word "stingy" is just as good and isn't mistaken for something else.

Just thought I would throw in a little bit of linguistic trivia! :)


http://www.worldwidewords.org/qa/qa-nig1.htm

http://www.straightdope.com/columns/r ... s-niggardly-a-racist-word

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/ ... aily/jan99/district27.htm
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Anonymous
Posted: 2012/3/21 20:28  Updated: 2012/3/22 1:18
 Re: Southern Lewisville Homeowner Vandalized Over Upside-...
Thanks Webster. When I used the word I was aware of the background but I still wouldn't use it because it is assumed by most to be related to the n-word. Gay also predates the sexual connotation. It can be used to mean happy. Now that we've gotten that little lesson out of the way, could we get rid of the word "retarded"? One poster on here doesn't see that as a bad thing to say but it is. Retarded simply meant delayed just like gay meant happy but the meaning has changed over time. That's what got us into this hijack of the thread. I'm sure that everyone would like the thread back to the original topic now. Please, I ask each of you to take the word "retarded" out of your vocabulary. It is offensive to many people. That's it. No more on this subject, okay?
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WhosPlayin
Posted: 2012/3/22 1:26  Updated: 2012/3/22 1:26
Editor
Joined: 2008/12/12
From:
Posts: 3919
 Re: Southern Lewisville Homeowner Vandalized Over Upside-...
We have gone off-topic, but it's a good conversation to have. I actually had been thinking about posting something on this subject, since there is a group an LHS trying to teach students to remove the R-word from their vocabularies.

The thing that was hardest for me to wrap my head around for years, is that when it comes to words, effect outweighs intent every time. It's all about how it's received. I'm sure I've been guilty of misusing the word on occasion, but I'll try to be conscious.

I would say that "retard" as a verb still seems to have innocuous but distinctive meaning in scientific and automotive speak. We should avoid using it as a noun or adjective though, or descriptive of people in any circumstance.
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Anonymous
Posted: 2012/3/22 10:27  Updated: 2012/3/22 10:52
 Re: Southern Lewisville Homeowner Vandalized Over Upside-...
Thanks for the clarification Steve. That is certainly what I meant and thought I made clear without calling out the part of speech. There is a use for retard as a verb and I never meant to imply that it shouldn't be used. It is just the slack way it is used in society now that many don't think of as seen in one of your poster's unnecessary use of it and then their subsequent defense of the use. I am glad to hear about the group at LHS. From what I understand, that is happening all across the nation and there is also a Facebook page dedicated to doing away with the R-word. Sometimes our kids are the leaders that we should follow! There thoughtfulness in making this an issue they want to take on gives me great pride and hope in the future.
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Anonymous
Posted: 2012/3/19 20:25  Updated: 2012/3/20 0:17
 Re: Southern Lewisville Homeowner Vandalized Over Upside-...
To get back on track here I find it very disturbing that this happened to someone in my neighborhood. I walk past that flag every day at least twice a day while walking my dog and while the upside down flag does annoy me, I accept it as the homeowner's freedom of speech (yes, this is freedom of speech) and move on. What is hard to accept is that someone vandalized (yes, this was vandalism) my neighbor using such a hateful and ignorant message. The woman might have different ideals than us, some of which are definitely out there, but she does seem like a nice woman and was very upset by what was done to her property and the message that was left. If you're truly upset by someone flying the flag upset down, then ring their doorbell and ask them about it, don't commit a cowardly act like this and hide behind religion and patriotism. And to that, can you honestly call yourself a good Christian if you use God's name is such a hateful message and can you truly call yourself patriotic if you don't support someone else's freedom of speech?
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Runfellow
Posted: 2012/3/22 12:59  Updated: 2012/3/22 12:59
Guest Columnist (Verified User)
Joined: 2011/3/17
From: Lewisville, TX
Posts: 294
 Re: Southern Lewisville Homeowner Vandalized Over Upside-...
If we could "like" comments on this site, I would do so for this one. Well said, sir or ma'am.

One of the most important ideas behind freedom of speech anywhere is the importance of letting someone whom you disagree with say what they need to say, so long as their rights don't infringe upon yours. The more repulsive and absurd the idea is, the more you let them speak to "remove all doubt", as the Lincoln quote goes (that he probably never said). We're not just talking about a basic right here; often, this is about validating the incorrect views of others by trying to silence them. That doesn't help anyone.
-BC
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TexasMama
Posted: 2012/3/23 11:24  Updated: 2012/3/23 11:24
Contributor (Verified User)
Joined: 2010/3/25
From:
Posts: 146
 Re: Southern Lewisville Homeowner Vandalized Over Upside-...
@Runfellow - excellent reply!!
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Anonymous
Posted: 2012/3/23 14:26  Updated: 2012/3/23 16:45
 Re: DIFFERENT SUBJECT
Sorry for the change of subject. I don't know how to start a new thread. But does anyone know why the principal at Lewisville High School is being reassigned?
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WhosPlayin
Posted: 2012/3/23 16:46  Updated: 2012/3/23 23:56
Editor
Joined: 2008/12/12
From:
Posts: 3919
 Re: DIFFERENT SUBJECT
I do have some info. It is posted here.

BTW, You can always post any question on one of the open thread posts.
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Anonymous
Posted: 2012/3/23 18:45  Updated: 2012/3/23 23:56
 Re: DIFFERENT SUBJECT
Ask anybody who has ever had to work with him and has half a brain and you'll wonder why did it take so long!
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Anonymous
Posted: 2012/3/22 20:16  Updated: 2012/3/23 8:03
 Re: Southern Lewisville Homeowner Vandalized Over Upside-...
Someone please educate me here. How is this freedom of speech as guaranteed by the First Amendment? Here is the text of the First Amendment and I don't see how flying the flag upside down is protected by it:

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.


As BC pointed out, flag etiquette is governed by the Flag Code which is not a legally binding document. And to BC's comment regarding someone using the flag on advertisements, I would like to add that I find it disrespectful when tattered or faded flags are flown by people who are trying to show their patriotism. Retire your flags and take them to the VFW for a flag retirement or give them to a Boy Scout troop as they will do a respectful flag retirement ceremony that is actually very moving if you've never seen or participated in one.
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Anonymous
Posted: 2012/3/24 4:48  Updated: 2012/3/24 8:11
 Re: Southern Lewisville Homeowner Vandalized Over Upside-...
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WhosPlayin
Posted: 2012/3/24 11:33  Updated: 2012/3/24 11:33
Editor
Joined: 2008/12/12
From:
Posts: 3919
 Re: Southern Lewisville Homeowner Vandalized Over Upside-...
Speech includes symbolic speech, which can consist of many things. It isn't intended to literally only cover verbal speech.

Speech can be:
- An upside down flag
- A bumper sticker
- A t-shirt with a slogan
- A billboard
- A yard sign
- Your hairstyle
- Your clothing style in general (including that stupid, idiotic trend for boys to wear their pants down mid-thigh, with their boxers hanging out)
- A song, poem, painting, or other work of art
- A photograph
- Turning your back on someone
- Just about any other symbolic act.

I view speech as an individual right, and I think the courts generally uphold it that way.

The exceptions tend to be when the speech or activity interfere with the rights, safety, or peace of others. Obscenity is an example, and so is incitement to riot. Burning a flag could be a safety hazard or an incitement to riot, but it could also be protected speech, depending on the venue.
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Anonymous
Posted: 2012/3/25 0:02  Updated: 2012/3/25 9:39
 Re: Southern Lewisville Homeowner Vandalized Over Upside-...
This is my first post on this subject. While I don't condone vandalism in any form, I think that when a person uses free speech rights in a way that incites extemely strong feelings (for example, flying the flag upside down when the person knows that many people fought and died to defend our country and its flag, and that a large number of flag lovers will become enraged), I think it is forseeable and even LIKELY that one of the enraged folks is going to take action. Is what happened here a crime? Yes. Is it surprising? Absolutely not.
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2014/10/31 20:41:32 - LPD Nabs Second Shooting Suspect
2014/10/29 21:10:00 - Lewisville Police Shooting Team Takes Top Honors at Tactical Competition
2014/10/28 20:40:00 - DCTA, NCTCOG Funding Lewisville Hike-Bike Trails
2014/10/28 18:40:00 - Lewisville Police Offer Free Medication Disposal Year-Round
2014/10/26 22:10:00 - Upcoming Events Around Lewisville and the Surrounding Area
2014/10/26 21:40:00 - Bogard Lane Closed at I-35 For the Rest of the Year
2014/10/26 21:40:00 - Community Meeting Scheduled for I-35 Project Status Update
2014/10/26 19:25:29 - A Story About Molly
2014/10/26 0:05:33 - Teen Driver Accidentally Kills 12 Year Old
2014/10/25 9:50:00 - Denton County Celebrates Groundbreaking of Government Center


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