Like most things political within this partisan and hostile environment, it began with a phone call from a few disgruntled individuals over something that offended them.
This time it was an American Flag decal affixed to the side of a police cruiser in Laguna Beach, California, that had a few residents freaking out within a southern California beach community.
A few offended snowflakes began complaining that the image was too aggressive.
Councilman Peter Blake at the time addressed the controversy stating, “People are screaming that the American flag on a police car is somehow or another … hurting people’s feelings who might be immigrants or visitors.”
Adding, “People are actually ridiculous enough to bring up comments about our cop cars having American flags on them.”
The bold red, white and blue type design with the word “POLICE” spelled out is superimposed within an image of an American flag, giving the police car a patriotic theme. Which apparently freaked out one local artist complaining that design was too “aggressive,” saying she felt it didn’t represent the community.
Another resident designer Chris Prelitz said, “Folks thought it was a SWAT team, federal agents.”
Adding, “So it had a very striking, strong impact, so much so that I think there might be some unintended consequences.”
Whatever the hell that means, in that a police car should actually look intimidating to the “BAD GUYS!”
The controversy sparked city council members to hold an emergency council meeting on Tuesday, where residents were invited to come and be heard, regarding whether the American Flag decals should be removed or not.
Mayor Steve Dicterow decided on holding a council meeting after he had received more emails on the decal issue than any other issue during his tenure in Laguna Beach government.
However, because of the large crowd, he cautioned speakers to limit their remarks since the line of residents who wanted to speak extended out the door and half-way down the street.
One WWII veteran attending the meeting lamented, “If there are people who are offended by the stars and stripes, my guess is that they have never fought to preserve them.”
However, one woman said she saw the word “ICE” in the word “POLICE” on the side of the patrol cars, and said that “people who look different, but are American citizens” would have trouble with the artwork, and would feel “bullied” by the artwork.
Another resident chimed in saying, “I’m actually appalled we are here tonight. I mean think about it, people are upset at the flag on our police cars. I actually think you should wrap the darned cars with the whole flag.”
While another said, “We are a rainbow-wearing, avocado eating, art-loving beach community, and inclusion is part of that.”
Adding, “We are not including our Hispanic community with the work ‘ICE’ on our police cars.”
However as the evening rolled on, common sense and logic finally prevailed to keep the new USA-themed decals on police cars after hearing passionate testimony from both sides of the aisle.
Perhaps in keeping with the spirit of brotherhood, even within a progressive and divided enclave like Laguna Beach, residents began singing the “Star Spangled Banner.”
One resident who declined to give her name summed up the council meeting as she was leaving stating, “I would like to just support all the citizens here of the United States of America, as one nation, the human race.”
Adding, “I am very proud that you have the aesthetics for, and the graphics for, the flag. As just as it symbolized American freedom and our brotherhood, and so does in France the Notre Dame that was burned yesterday and it represented their freedom and their religious beliefs, etc., etc. Please, please keep this for the Laguna Beach police cars.”