A woodworker had gifted the Montgomery County Police Department with a handmade flag on National First Responders Day, which had been sparking controversy and mixed emotions by the masses in the local community.
The handmade wooden flag featured the normal American flag design, but with a twist - it featured a thin blue line on the middle, replacing a white one. The crafter, identified as James Shelton from Germantown had also given a similar flag to the Fire Station 31 in North Potomac, but had featured a red line instead.
The flag had been created and delivered by Shelton and his young son on National First Responders Day. This pair was one of the 50 woodworkers across the country who support their first responders in their communities and making wooden flags in line to their support. The younger son of Shelton posted a photo to Twitter which the officers and the station had agreed to.
It said: “Thank you to resident James Shelton, who presented Montgomery County 5th District officers with a wooden American Flag that he had made in recognition of National First Responders Day. The flag will be displayed in the 5th District Station.”
It can be also remembered that this variation of the flag resembled the symbol of Blue Lives Matter that was founded in 2014, but can also be seen as a direct rebuttal to the Black Lives Matter movement.
Just last Friday, the Montgomery County Executive Marc Elrich told the 5th District to remove the flag from their office on display.
“The flag provides a symbol of support to some, but it is a symbol of submissiveness to others. Because it is divisive, the flag will not be posted at the 5th District nor in any public space within the Police Department,” Elrich said. “Under my administration, we are committed to improving police relations with the community and will immediately address any action that stands against our mission.”