NYC Firefighters Forced To Remove American Flag Honoring 9/11 Heroes

A thin red line flag (Wikimedia Commons) and a New York City Fire Department badge photo

Firefighters in New York City’s East Village were ordered to remove “red line” American flags honoring six members of their squad who lost their lives on 9/11.

This was after a neighborhood resident called the flag “fascist” and New York City Council Member Carlina Rivera wondered if it was a “politically charged symbol.”

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NYC Firefighter Flag Honoring 9/11 Victims Called ‘Fascist Symbol’

This all started when, on March 22nd, a man claiming he was a staffer of Rivera’s confronted firefighters at Ladder Co. 11.

The New York Post reported, “The man pedaled up to the East 2nd Street firehouse on a bicycle and told firefighters he worked for Rivera and that the councilwoman’s office ‘complained’ to the FDNY three days earlier about the flag – which features a red stripe in tribute of firefighters injured or killed in the line of duty.”

“He called it a ‘fascist symbol’ and demanded to know why it was still up, sources said,” the Post notes.

The story continued:

In a March 19 email to FDNY Intergovernmental Affairs Coordinator Madison Hernandez, Rivera staffer Lisander Rosario said the councilwoman’s office was contacted by the “constituent” twice about the ladder company’s flag and asked if it’s violating department rules. “[FDNY staff] claimed it was to honor deceased firefighters, however, [the constituent] brought up that they could’ve used an FDNY flag rather than a politically charged symbol,” Rosario wrote.

“It is to both his and our understanding that private political symbols aren’t permitted to be displayed on public vehicles.”

“Can you confirm if there are any violating flags/symbols on Ladder 11?” added the email, which was obtained by The Post.

Hours after the “constituent” left the firehouse, FDNY Deputy Chief Joseph Schiralli visited firefighters there and reluctantly said the flag must come off the fire truck because it violated a department prohibition of “altered” versions of the American flag.

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American Flag Returns

Hours after the flag was removed from the fire truck, the decision was evidently reversed.

“Commissioner Kavanagh and Chief of Department John Hodgens reversed the decision and allowed the flag back on the truck,” the Post reported. “We’re happy with the outcome of this — but we’re offended it happened in the first place,” said a Ladder 11 firefighter.

“This flag has huge significance for us,” he added.

9/11 was obviously one of the worst tragedies America has ever experienced. It was undeniably the greatest domestic terrorist attack in the history of the United States.

And NYC firefighters were on the front lines.

Many of those heroes lost their lives that day trying to protect their fellow citizens. We owe them a debt of gratitude.

At a minimum, they deserve to be remembered by their brothers. Shame on anyone who would say otherwise.

is a professional writer and editor with over 15 years of experience in conservative media and Republican politics. He... More about John Hanson

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