Thin blue line flag gifted to MCPD police station sparks controversy

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Some say the flag represents police unity and should not be banned

GERMANTOWN, Md. (WDVM) — Montgomery County Police stations may not be able to fly the “thin blue line” flag after a local father and son donated a wooden flag to a police station to show their appreciation.

A local father and son donated a wooden thin blue line flag to a Montgomery County Police station for National First Responders Day. The flag was posted on social media by the Montgomery County Police Department but Montgomery County Executive Marc Elrich did not approve.

“The problem is that the symbol of the thin blue line flag has been appropriated by Blue Lives Matter,” said Marc Elrich, Montgomery County Executive.

Governor Hogan took his quote disgust to twitter after hearing Elrich’s request that the station not put up the flag given to them by citizens who wanted to show their appreciation. Hogan tweeted “a local official prohibiting police from displaying a flag given to them by a grateful child is disgraceful.”

Elrich says he has no ill intent toward the little boy and his father but he says he doesn’t like the new meaning the flag has gained as he said quote is dismissive of the Black Lives Matter movement.

“This has everything to do with the appropriation of that symbol for something that the thin blue line didn’t actually represent, that’s the problem I have in the community,” said Elrich.

Elrich mentioned in the past year the county has faced – a controversial shooting, an officer jokingly using a racial slur, and an officer caught assaulting a man in handcuffs.

“What if I ordered people departments to fly the black lives matter flag, you think that would go over very well with everybody probably not,” said Elrich.

Elrich says he’s open to a future discussion on alternatives to the flag.

Tuesday the county council is set to interview Montgomery County’s acting police chief Marcus Jones for the permanent chief’s position.

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