Thursday, July 5, 2012

What Were They Thinking...?

If you want to see some folks get really upset, start placing bans on displaying the American flag on the graves of veterans!

To some it may sound like it is just a minor thing, but I don't think I would want to be on the city council after this!

Texas Town Bans Flags on Veterans’ Graves

A Texas town is reconsidering a controversial ordinance that it approved earlier this month that would ban the displaying of flags at gravesites.

The ordinance, approved by the City Council of Mineral Wells, states that flags would be allowed on graves at the town’s Woodland Park Cemetery only one week before and after Memorial Day and Veterans’ Day. July 4 and Labor Day, other popular flag holidays, were not part of the approved time frame.

After citizens expressed outrage, flooding the city council office with calls Monday, the council scheduled a public meeting for July 10 to reconsider the new flag policy.

Veteran Robert Veach, whose father is buried at Woodland Park, was one of the first to speak out against the ordinance, telling the Mineral Wells Index that he believed he should be allowed to put a flag at his father’s grave 365 days a year.

The ordinance was adopted by the Woodland Park Cemetery Board, said Peggy Gustin, the administrative clerk for Mineral Wells, because the number of items placed at gravesites, which included teddy bears, statues, bird baths and squirrel feeders, were becoming a few too many.

“Excessive adornment at the cemetery was causing it to be unsightly, so the cemetery board came up with a solution that they thought would work for all,” Gustin told

After several public meetings were held over several months, the ordinance passed. The last two meetings were held specifically for the public to voice opinions, according to a news release from the City Council. The final meeting was publicized on the front page of the local newspaper. No one one showed up to voice objections, according to the news release.

But within days of the ordinance passing, the city received complaints from angry citizens, including Veach.

“The city of Mineral Wells would like to clarify its position in that this action was not in any way taken with the intention of bringing any dishonor or disrespect to any of our Veterans, past or present,” a news release on the City Council’s website said.

The ordinance also stated that flowers and decorations were allowed for only 21 days after a funeral, and that the flowers must be in a nonglass vase and would be removed once they became “unsightly.” But only the flag provsion of the ordinance is under reconsideration.

As for the July 4th holiday, flags will be allowed in the cemetery, Gustin said.

“People are welcome to do their flags on July 4,” Gustin said. “Nothing is going to be done considering the flags until after the meeting on July 10. They won’t be removed. People can place them.”

Sometimes you have to wonder just what kind of idiots we have in office. It's like the inmates are running the asylum, ya know?

I think we should have our coffee and tea in the kitchen this morning. I have some fresh apple pie...if Mom hasn't eaten it all, that is!


Anonymous said...

I left them a little love note on the city council website: What the hell is wrong with you people? I would expect this kind of baloney in Massachusetts or California, where I am cursed to live. But you are in TEXAS. You are supposed to stand for something. If some pantywaist is worried about clutter, have them get of their sorry butt and organize a volunteer clean up committee or something. Do what Americans are supposed to do: THE RIGHT THING. What a disappointment you are. You bring shame to the Lone Star state with this dishonoring behavior.

The Griper said...

the intent of the counsil was good but unfortunately intent doesn't cover it sometimes

Sixbears said...

Texas doesn't seem to be living up to its rep as a becon of freedom. It seems little bureaucratic Hitlers pop up everywhere. Typical over reaction to a small problem, causing a bigger problem.

Anonymous said...

One of our car dealerships used to stop the practice of being open during patriotic holidays like Memorial Day and 4th of July. His Dad was a WWII B-17 bombadier and was shot down over Germany in a bombing run. Survived a year of captivity in a German POW camp.

To honor his Dad, the son closed down the dealership for some years. I was told that many veterans went to the dealership to express their thanks in honoring them like that.

A shame about Mineral Wells doing that, but I do understand the concern of too many items adjacent to tombstones. A good hard wind blows and the items get scattered all over place. Who cleans these up - the cemetary employees of course.

Baby Sis said...

Bubba -

Yep - joined the Berry Brigade and placed a call to Mineral Wells myself. Shall you and I take a trip out to Daddy's gravestie next time I'm over that way and place a flag? Got severla around my place that will get the job done...

Big hugs -

linda m said...

I can't believe there are still idiots like that around. I am glad those citizens stood up to the counsel and told them to go take a hike. Our veterans deserve more respect than that. As for the clutter that is created in cemeteries, I agree with Anonymous. Regulate all that other stuff, but the American Flag is not clutter; it doesn't blow all over the place and is not unsightly. Coffee and apple pie sound good to me.

Bob from Athens said...

Yes the city council screwed up, however where were all these complainers when the council was considering this ordinance in all the public meetings. Things like this usually happen when when the local citizens ignore what is going on at the city council meetings. If just one concerned citizen had showed up at one of the meetings this ordinance would have been changed and properly worded to allow flags all the time from the start.

JOJO said...

I think the board really messed up to include flags in there effort to clean up the cememtary.
BUT! Why didn't anyone show up before hand to say this is wrong.
Usually happens that way.

Coffee in the kitchen sounds good to me, kind of wet here. Apple pie? YUM

Stephen said...

You hit the nail on the head when you wrote, 'what idiots.' Texas - really...

Craig Cavanaugh said...

One more reason why I want a "Viking" funeral. Jeez, gives "regulated to death" a whole new meaning!

HermitJim said...

Hey Kris...
I can understand what they were trying to do, but I don't think they went about it in the right way!

However, Like others I can't help but wonder where the outrage was before they passed this ordinance!

Thanks for coming over today!

Hey Griper...
Unfortunately, they say the road to Hell is paved with good intentions!

I just hope that they get everything all worked out!

Thanks you for coming over today!

Hey Sixbears...
Right you are! Texas has lost much of it's rep as a place for action takers, I'm afraid!

Between the HOA folks and City Council power grabbers, the state is in a lot of trouble!

Thanks, my friend, for coming by today!

Hey Anon 6:10...
I was totally surprised yesterday at how few businesses were closed.

When I was younger, holidays like the 4TH were special, but now days it just means some kind of sale!

Thanks for dropping in today!

Hey Sis...
Sounds like a plan to me! I haven't been there much lately!

Always look forward to seeing you again!

Thanks, Sis, for coming by today!

Hey Linda...
It does sound as though there could have been another way to approach the problem.

However, where were the folks in town during the planning stage? Somebody dropped the ball!

I really do appreciate you coming by today!

Hey Bob...
I have to agree with you, buddy, on everything you said!

Ignorance is certainly no excuse! We have to keep an eye on all these councils and other politicians or face being over-run with intrusive ordinances!

Thanks, buddy, for the visit today!

Hey JoJo...
Who knows why folks do what they do?

Seems to me that the whole town went to sleep this time!

Thanks, sweetie, for coming over today!

HermitJim said...

Hey Stephen...
Just one more case of how quickly our not paying attention can bite us in the butt!

Vigilance is always important, now more than ever!

Thanks for dropping in, buddy!

Hey Craig...
Seems to me that these little power grabbing twerpts are becoming more and more active as of late!

Texas has sure got more than their fair share of this type!

Thanks, brother, for coming by today!

Dizzy-Dick said...

I think it has all been said above. I can see how the flags just stuck in the ground could cause a problem when mowing, but not enough to dis-allow them. They should be place close to the marker so as not to create a problem.

HermitJim said...

Hey Dizzy...
Certainly could have been handled a little differently, I think!

I just hope this isn't the beginning of a trend!

Thanks, buddy, for coming by today!

Dizzy-Dick said...

Yep HJ, they are taking God out of everything and now our countries flag. . . Dang, never thought I would live to see this happening in the good old US of A.

Labrys said...

I will doubtless be unpopular in my opinion here. The only reason I can see for such an ordinance is that folks do not maintain graves very well.

I've walked thru cemeteries and seen flags lying on the ground. This is not a respectful thing to the flag itself or the buried person. Furthermore, when I was in the military, we were taught it was wrong to display a flag in any way that left it in darkness at night...the flag should be lit up or taken down at night.

I know, doubtless this is dismissed as being unnecessarily sticklerish on my part; but I find it depressing to so often see the flag in shreds around an ignored flagpole, or whipping disconsolately in heavy weather, almost ready to escape the pole entirely.

Ted Webb said...

All American Flags on American Veterans graves should be American Flags made in America by Americans.

Ted Webb said...

Me being a Texan by birth I feel the same way about my state flag.made in Texas by Texans

Survival Food Supplies said...

Excessive adornment also causes environmental pollution problems.