Marine Corps Veteran Refuses To Take Down Military Flags After City Passes New Ordinance

Courtesy MyFoxTampa

Courtesy MyFoxOrlando

 

Fox35 out of Orlando, Florida reports that Eddie Colosimo, who runs Holy Hill’s Bikers for First Amendments Rights restaurant and bar, a non-profit that helps support military veterans, has been ordered to remove his Military flags as they are in violation of a city ordinance. Although the city ordinance was just passed in March, and he has been flying his flags for over two years.

Colosimo, a wounded Marine Corps vet, is passionate about United States Armed Forces.  His granddaughter, grandson, and son-in-law are all serving in different branches of the military.  So, Colosimo decided to fly military flags representing all our servicemen and women in front of his the restaurant.

 

“These flags represent our men and women all over the world for us today!” he said.

 

These flags have been here every weekend for two years, but just this week, Colosimo received a letter from the city informing him that flying the flags violates a new city code passed in March.

 

“The fines will start today (Friday) for every day the flags fly,” he told us.  “Please don’t try to tell me my Army, Marine Corps, Coast Guard, Air Force flags are flutter signs, and compare them to beer signs. That doesn’t fly!”

 

The new law requires businesses to apply for a permit to display a temporary sign or banner on their property; however, the American, POW, and state flags are allowed.

Now, Colosimo is being fined $300 a day by the City of Holly Hill.  Officials just announced that they will hold a special hearing in two weeks to discuss the matter.  For now, Colosimo says these flags aren’t going anywhere.

 

“You’re gonna tell me that I can’t honor them… show respect for them? I’m sorry. Bring your handcuffs. I’ll go to jail. I don’t care.” Courtesy MyFoxTampa

 

Seems Mr. Colosimo is in the right here in my opinion, he has been doing this for several years before this new law. I think the city should make an exception, it’s not like he is displaying anything offensive.

Here is the video interview:

FOX 35 News Orlando

 

I know we will catch flak from some because “it’s the law”, but I believe this Marine is standing for what he believes in!  And I love his comment “You’re gonna tell me that I can’t honor them… show respect for them? I’m sorry. Bring your handcuffs. I’ll go to jail. I don’t care.”

Mr. Colosimo, we stand with you brother!

Here is the link to the original story posted by Fox Vet Defies City Ordinance Banning Display Of Military Flags

 

What are your thoughts?
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96 comments on “Marine Corps Veteran Refuses To Take Down Military Flags After City Passes New Ordinance
          • The city is out of line. We should stand in support for our freedoms. I wonder how many of this city served and I hope they will show their support for this man and his right to fly these flags.

        • you’re right dave, but whats your point? are you just pointing out the commenter’s misunderstanding or are you agreeing? the reason why i ask is the military and we veterans see the flags that represent our branches with nearly as much reverence as the stars and stripes; while it symbolizes the nation and all of its sacrifices the branch flags honor us. if you’ve seen a color guard you’d notice all the ribbons atop? they are every single fight fought by that branch and that’s what that flag represents, all of those who fought,died,served and still serve. so yeah…those flags deserve to fly wherever and anytime one wishes.

      • It’s not the American flag they are citing him for but the flags of the branches of the armed forces, the POW, American and State flags are exempted. Read the article again please. Qouted from above article:
        The new law requires businesses to apply for a permit to display a temporary sign or banner on their property; however, the American, POW, and state flags are allowed.

        • So what’s your point? ANY FLAG that represents the US Military should not only be ‘allowed’, it should be honored.This man is doing a service to the proud men and women who have served our country and the city’s political machine is telling him he can’t do this? Shame on them! ‘Land of the Free’ ?
          Inch by inch that freedom is being infringed upon. This can not be allowed to happen, not in America.

      • I was wondering the exact thing. Usually there is a “Grandfather Clause”.
        Also- it is America and as long as it is, he should be able to fry those flags. Means forever!!!!
        ACLJ helps – don’t know if they would here but it is worth a try.

      • THIS IS JUST ANOTHER REASON TO GET OUR HEADS OUT OF THE SAND. SINCE WHEN IS IT ILLEGAL TO RESPECT OUR SOLDIERS. IT IS OK TO ADVERTISE PORN ALCOHOL TOBACCO AND ALL SORTS OF PERVERSIONS, BUT TO FLY MILITARY FLAGS BEING WRONG. WELL THAT IS JUST TO DARN MUCH FOR ME OR ANY OTHER RED BLOODED AMERICAN TO TAKE ANYMORE !!!!!!!!!!!!!. SO JUST SIT ON YER BUTTS AND SAY OH WELL IT WONT HAPPEN TO ME. THEN ONE DAY YOU PULL YER HEAD OUT OF THE SAND AND SAY WHERE DID OUR AMERICA GO ?? THE ANSWER IS SIMPLE IT DISAPPEARED A LITTLE AT A TIME UNTIL ALL AT ONCE IT WAS GONE AND WE ARE UNDER A DICTATORSHIP !!! SO WHO ARE YOU ?? OSTRICH OR A FREE AMERICAN ?

    • I’m always looking at ways to get around things that piss me off, and it sounds to me like he has a way. According to this article, “law requires businesses to apply for a permit to display a temporary sign or banner on their property; however, the American, POW, and state flags are allowed.”

      His flags currently are flying from what appears to be PVC pipe stuck into the ground, which the City is likely considering temporary. If he poured some concrete, and put up small permanent flag poles they wouldn’t couldn’t be considered temporary any more.

      It might be expensive way for him to show his support, but it’s cheaper than $300/a day fine and the flags could stay. Someone else might even do it for cheap/free, but you’d have to worry about any permits required for the work. There are ways around their silly little games.

      Then the City could take their ordinance and have a happy ending.

      • I’m not sure that would solve the problem – the flags themselves are still “temporary” – they can be taken down & replaced at any time. Perhaps some kind of bill-board with the flags painted on it (or real flags permanently attached somehow) would be in compliance with the ordinance.

        Note that I’m not defending the ordinance or saying that it shouldn’t be changed, only that I think that you are misunderstanding it.

  1. So people selling beer before prohibition should have been grandfathered in? I agree that he should be allowed to fly them, but your understanding of law is horrible Lance.

  2. just because it “is the law” doesn’t make it right. remember that once the law allowed slavery and denied women the right to vote. that is why there can (and must) be judicial review of laws, and they can be struck down if it is determined they are overly broad, vague, or unconstitutional.

  3. im sorry .. but those flags are not advertisement flags and should NOT be treated as such .. there should be no law against flying the flags of the men and women who have died protecting the freedoms of this Nation .. I don’t give a crap who gets butt hurt seeing them!

    • Chris, I completely agree with your comment: “flutter signs”! WTF!!! To call the flags of our military branches “flutter signs” would be like referring to Old Glory as a piece of rag. These flags are not advertisement or the meaningless attention-getter banners that this law is trying to target. Armed services flags should be included in the list of allowed flags in this law.

  4. Shouldn’t matter how long he’s been flying them. He’s supporting his countrymen. Since when is patriotism an offense you can be fined for?

  5. It is actually unconstitutional for them to do this. They can not pass Ex Post Facto legislation. Meaning, he was in no violation of laws or codes when he flew the flags to begin with, so he can not be punished for it now that there is a “code”.

    • Ex Post Facto means that he can not get in trouble for having flown them before the law was passed. He could still get in trouble for flying them afterward. He shouldn’t get in trouble because it is not advertisement and he is just honoring the military but sometimes people who write laws or enforce them don’t think quite right. The flags of the services should be allowed along with the state flags and the POW/MIA flag.

  6. We ceased to be a free country when a man had to ASK PERMISSION, which is what a PERMIT is, to do ANYTHING on HIS OWN PROPERTY!
    RAGE AGAINST THE MACHINE!

  7. You know what I am sorry but screw this law. This law is by far a joke an just another way for local and federal government to destroy our love and support for our country and military brothers and sisters. For one to compare the flight of the army,navy,air force,marines and coast guard flags in the same category as beer signs is beyond ignorant and what makes them different then the POW flag?It is just a sign of the times to come, 2nd amendment,flying flags, forcible medical and threats. Please laws are in place to help people but tell me how this so called BS law can compare to the freedom of speech that West bro baptist church does at funerals. It is first amendment right but the law states 500 yards away for them but still can spread hate, but yet they have not been placed into a hate group status? Blow smoke somewhere else about laws and start thinking about your rights and the rights your so called understanding of law prohibits an continues to do so.. The flags of our fighting men an women are not an advertisement it is a show of support. Fly them high and fly them proud. God bless you brother.

  8. Yet more of our rights being taken away from us. Politicians and other strokers should either put up or shut up. Veterans are what made this country as great as it is. The more you take away what we so proudly fought for, the worse this country will become…. Veterans will NOT let that happen.

  9. Yet more of our rights being taken away from us. Politicians and other strokers should either put up or shut up. Veterans are what made this country as great as it is. The more you take away what we so proudly fought for, the worse this country will become…. Veterans will NOT let that happen.

  10. But don’t you guys see? Those flags ARE offensive. They are offensive to the progressive notion of dictating what you Mr. and Mrs. Private Citizen can and can’t do on your property. Just as in everything else, Khrushchev warned, that we cannot expect Americans to fly from capitalism to communism, but we can assist their elected leaders in giving Americans small injections of socialism until they suddenly awake to find out they have Communism. This is what is happening now what was founded as a bastion of freedom. They want to nationalize everything and bring every human endeavor under their control and want social control over populations and thereby incrementally making everything against the law.

  11. Actually,it’s against his first amendment right, as was proven when the Constitution was created. It’s a freedom of his speech, like when people are allowed to burn it in protest,nothing happens to them so bam all that is needed.

  12. I agree with all of you about his right to fly any and every flag he wants to honor our military!I also agree with the fact that a law cannot be passed after the fact!

  13. I am proud of this man for standing up for what is right. And I thank him for his service as well as all those currently serving our country!

  14. So the US & POW flags (federal) and state flag are allowed but not federal branches of military? So he can support only those troops that are POW/MIA but not currently serving? Seems a little off to me…

  15. guys, relax. it seems obvious to me that the new ordinance was in response to “obnoxious or dangerously distracting” advertisements… The fact that certain flags were exempted from the ordinance is proof that they were trying to make it in such a way that they did NOT step on peoples’ patriotism. They simply failed to account for ALL displays of patriotic flags. Then, because this man’s flags didn’t fall into that accidentally too narrow category, someone who was responsible for searching the city for violations found them, noted them down, passed on the info, which someone else put in a report, someone in the clerks office read it, typed up a notice of violation and mailed it…

    BUT, because he has spoken up, a special hearing will be held. Duh. If he doesn’t behave stupidly, if he just informs the panel and allows them a chance to think rationally, they are sure to recognize the patriotic nature of his flags and either give him a special dispensation, or possibly even rewrite the ordinance to allow other forms of patriotic flag flying.

    His anger is understandable, and the fact that this article got written makes sense, but I expect all of this to resolve very easily in his favor as long as he doesn’t antagonize the people he needs to convince. Unless someone wrote that ordinance specifically to target him for some strange reason. Which I suppose is possible. 9_9

    • The unfortunate thing is that he does have to convince someone or fight for the right to fly a few flags. Understandably some laws are too vague or over-encompassing, but for him to have to fight a legal battle is silly. He shouldn’t have to present himself professionally or behave a certain way. If someone wants to fly a flag on their property they should be allowed to do so. That goes for everyone, even flags that you or I would disagree with. If he is paying the city for permits to own and operate a business among who knows how many other things the least they can do is let him display his own memorabilia or what have you.

      That fact that he has to defend his First Amendment RIGHT is simply absurd. Why should we have to justify our patriotism? I’m willing to extend that right to anyone also, even if it potentially offends me. If we’re allowed to burn an American flag as a protected right, why are we not allowed to fly our own flags?

    • You’re clearly confused.

      An example of poorly written legislation would be the New York SAFE Act (an already terrible law), which forgot to exempt police from the infringements signed off by Dictator Cuomo. This legislation is fully intentional. If it was another example of our elected officials not doing their jobs and neglecting to read the laws they sign, then they would NOT be contacting him to remove his flags. They are enforcing the new legislation which proves it was totally intentional.

      When we have to get permission to protest in certain areas, are told we can only fly certain flags, and are told what we can and cannot own while the government owns exactly what we cannot…..we are no longer free.

    • Screw being PC or apologetic or begging the assholes for a change in the ‘law’ Tell them they are idiots, firmly raise the middle finger and walk out. Idiots like that do not deserve a civil response. They SHOULD be humiliated, insulted and chided for outrageous stupidity.

    • your nuts taking our rights away alittle at a time this is all about revenue I hope he keeps flying them I will support him please if you cant stand behind our troops then feel free to stand in front of them

  16. If Holly Hill won’t relent, then get out of Holly Hill. Move to Texas, or anywhere else. Stupid Holly Hill! The city’s people should vote to put Colosimo in their city council to influence their stupid mentality. Glad he’s taking a stand. BTW… this article is so poorly written. Is it Holy Hill or Holly Hill? “Holy Hell, Batman! Bulldog1 needs to go back to journalism school!”

  17. Are we no longer “the land of the free” but mere fiefdoms of tyrants, both grand and petty? Refuse and resist. Show these petty tyrants that we will not stand for their constant trespasses on the right of a free people. Take America back!

  18. OK, so let me get this straight. In this great country, we have the right to burn the flag if we so choose, but we have to have a permit in some places to fly them high and proud? That is utter bullshit. These people need to be slapped upside the head!! I stand with Colosimo!!

  19. I am a veteran of two branches and ill be dammed if anyone is going to tell me that I cannot fly my flags in support of my countrymen and women. I stand proudly with Mr. Colosimo, Semper Fi!

  20. This was a badly worded law. Clearly the intent was to ban distracting advertising signs, but they failed to word the exclusion for government flags properly. Under this ordinance, the school board, public works yard, fire department, police department, and even city hall would have to be fined every day as well. Traditionally every fire company has its own flag, as does every city, school board, even many private or religiously founded hospitals. This law needs to specify non-government or service organization advertising, then all levels of official flags, and service organizations would be exempt.

    • You’re clearly confused.

      An example of poorly written legislation would be the New York SAFE Act (an already terrible law), which forgot to exempt police from the infringements signed off by Dictator Cuomo. This legislation is fully intentional. If it was another example of our elected officials not doing their jobs and neglecting to read the laws they sign, then they would NOT be contacting him to remove his flags. They are enforcing the new legislation which proves it was totally intentional.

      When we have to get permission to protest in certain areas, are told we can only fly certain flags, and are told what we can and cannot own while the government owns exactly what we cannot…..we are no longer free

  21. There is no “grandfathering” and there is no exceptions that should be allowed here. This is an absolute overstep of our bloated government. What the HELL kind of law doesn’t allow people to fly flags that directly represent America? That city needs to be taken down a peg and reminded that they aren’t dictators.

  22. Wow, some of you really need to chill out. Yes, this sucks. Yes, it was a mistake or an oversite. Perhaps the person who reported the flags is misunderstanding the law. Perhaps these type of flags were meant to be included but the language was vague. No one is personally attacking this man for his flags. They are clinging too much to the letter of the law, not the spirit. He will show up. Assuming he does not go postal on them they will apologize and rescind the erroneous fines. They will amend the statute to reflect his flags as they should.

    There is nothing wrong with the nuisance flag rule. This is just a mistake that will be corrected. The people imposing the fines / writing the tickets are enforcing the law as written. If they didn’t then they could be fired. The one thing missing is that counsel’s willingness to put an injunction on the fines until this is decided. There is an old saying. The only thing that saves us from the horrors of the bureaucratic is its inefficiency.

  23. Hats off to you Marine for standing up for what is obviously right! The ordinance in question states that a business needs to apply to be able to fly banners or advertisements attached to their business. I fail to see how a US Government sanctioned flag sporting the US Government sanctioned emblem of US Government Military Organizations falls under a business banner. At my house, Glory flies highest. Then the POW/MIA flag (-til they all come home-). If i had room, id have 5 more flag poles just shorter than the POW flag that would sport all 5 branches of our military. for a city government to even hint that a public display of support for our troops, our own brothers and sisters, is wrong, and then have the audacity to lump them in with beer banners and sales posters is absolutely ludicrous. I agree with this Marine: those flags will fly until you come and take them from me. But be warned, Old Marines are still Marines! (im just an air force guy, but i respect those ground pounders! ill admit that while i could have done the basic training without problem, i wouldnt be able to do the job they do!) not to mention, his display of support is not a business choice, that is a personal freedom of speech choice, which according to the first amendment is still legal in all 50 states.. i do not see how the city ordinance can encompass both government sanctioned displays and the first amendment.

    • I think this little law deserves to see some of our men and women come together and fight it in a more legally violent manner just to make sure these city officials never forget to not shoot their guardians in the back. By legally violent I mean take it to court and have an actual big name news crew cover the proceedings in their entirety so everybody can see how things happen when you attack your own guardians.

  24. They want an entity to get a permit to fly a flag. You can bet your sweet bippy that permit is NOT free. This is a revenue producing law. The fact that this VETERAN was flying his SERVICE FLAGS was not the total agenda for this law. It is just that they are flags so the politicians figure he needs to purchase a permit or be fined. Just another way the government is controlling one little bit more of society. Think back about the seat belt law. Another few to think about are the gun laws which were just a little bitty piece of legislation, and now where has it gone? All of this, a little at a time, well except for obamacare, now that was a HUGE BLATANT takeover. They knew they could do it and get by with it.

    • I’m right there with you about the seat belt law: For all of you who don’t live in “The Sunshine State” it is illegal, as in many other states, to drive or ride in a motor vehicle without your seat belt on. So Florida legislators passed a law that allows the police to pull you over just for not having your seat belt on. They passed this law under the guise of “public safety” Well, I said public safety my arse because right around that time the same politicians passed the “no-helmet law” for bikers. There’s really no public safety in mind here, just revenue producing laws. If it brings money to the state/county/city, hell yes we’ll pass it!!!! There are a whole bunch of clowns running this state as we speak (or write).

  25. so if I’m in the service, OR a veteran and my state decides to go ape-shit or succeed, then someone has dictated for me, that my allegiance is to my state, and I should go up against my brothers i arms. kiss my ass. this country is nuts, and no one is going to tell me that a state loaded with illegal aliens, illiteracy, English as a 2nd language, and ass-clown politicians should gets the extra flag spot on my porch and not the Army .. or Navy or Air Force or USMC. no wonder a punk-ass creep in North Korea and talk smack about kicking our ass.. we invite it.

  26. This should be a first amendment issue pretty quickly. Holly Hill has tons of crappy flags littering U.S. 1 from bar flags to used auto lots and cheap hotels so don’t blame the law, just the person who wrote it overly restricted by being against the military especially when we’re at a state of war (war on terrorism will go on forever but we also have Iraq and Afghanistan on going too). If they just amended the law to exclude any U.S. national of Florida state flag then that should cover the military flags as well.

  27. Looks like some of you don’t get the point…or don’t care. Holly Hill has a lot more to worry about than a few flags. The place is a dump and drug haven and that is just saying something nice about the place. Either way, this is nothing more than politics and gaining control over the public. A little here, a little there…and before you know it the Obama Brown Boots will be here supporting the Holly Hill Police for enforcing this law and probably others to follow. As a Veteran of 23 years I am totally in support of this Veteran and his stance against the small time pathetic politicians that run rough shod in Holly Hill. The city of Edgewater just south of HH did this same thing to the American Legion only it was about the American Flag. I have been out of the loop for a while so I’m not certain how it turned out. Regardless it is time for the American people everywhere to take a stand against the governmental bullies at every level from the White House to thee Out House, which by the way are the same in my book.

    So HELL YES, let’s start gathering up and rounding up support for our Veteran Brother In Arms. Let’s make our voices heard and actions felt. Just say where and when and count me in.

    • So what you are saying in your pdf file, Mr. Mayor, is that you “lawmakers” simply elected to NOT enforce the laws you made, and only decided to take action when Mr. Colosimo put up a bike week banner in addition to the service flags. That seems a lot like how Obama chooses to ignore policies and laws that don’t further his Muslim Caliphate agenda. What it also looks like is that you “legislators” really feel a NEED to protect all those Holly Hell residents from the evils of TEMPORARY signs by dictating to a man if and how he can erect a banner or flag or temporary sign at his establishment, and I refer not just to Mr. Colosimo, but every business owner? Who do you people think you are, their father? Do they have to ask permission to run ads in the paper also, or perhaps buy a damn permit for that?
      It is so refreshing that you remind us in your adobe file that you are a city of laws. It just saddens me that you “Lawmakers” (read as despicable politicians), just like those in Washington have fouled the city so badly by feeling that you just haven’t worked hard enough for your constituents unless you have left a dung heap of worthless laws and regulations with your name on it. Most people no longer realize they are breaking about 10 useless and for the most part ignored “laws” just by walking down the street. But I am so glad that you “run” that “city of laws”. This way I’ll be sure that I never drive through your city and advise all my friends to bypass your personal Mayberry with their biker and veteran cash. To that end, Mr. Johnson, I find there is nothing “Honorable” about you as your memo attempting an explanation is extremely telling.

  28. They can get rid of the State of Florida Flag if our useless state politicians refuse to step in and help this man keep his flags flying!

  29. The new ordinance is anathema to the U.S. Constitution and repugnant as well, so it is considered by the law of the land null and void just as most of the laws that are made by collectivists and mini tyrants that have wormed their way into public office throughout the nation.

  30. I think this law needs to be shoved up someones butt. people want the freedom and rights this country gives all of us, they have forgotten who fought for the rights we all have. i was just telling my husband when we get our house we are going to have flagpoleS put in. the united states,army,marines,coast guard,navy,national guards will fly in my front yard. if there were national flags for emt,police officers. firefighter i would fly them also. these are people that give no thought to protect our way of life no matter what. grandfathered in. HELL NO we all should be able to fly the flags of our country men and women. if that is the only way this vet will be able to fly them then i say go for it.

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