Riverside County, California, Fire Chief John Hawkins displayed gross cowardice when he ordered members of his fire department to remove the Thin Blue Line flag from one their fire trucks.
"Some feel the flag is an attempt to incite further violence..."
Then those "some" who "feel" that way ought to pull their heads out of their asses and breathe some fresh air for a change.
Running like cowards anytime someone says you offended them is a certain recipe for disaster. Especially when it comes to the issue of supporting police against thugs and terrorists whose only mission in life is to murder those who have dedicated themselves to the defense of others.
Firefighter Eric Hille hung the flag off the back of his fire truck hours after 3 police officers were murdered in Baton Rouge. He felt deeply that supporting our police has never been more important than now, when radicalized morons, thugs and terrorists specifically target the men in blue for murder in their efforts to incite a race war.
The very next day he was ordered to remove the flag by Fire Chief John Hawkins in an email:
“Our foremost concern was whether the flag could create a safety risk for emergency responders due to extremists targeting the fire engine or for people following the fire engine and not being able to see the warning lights.
How is this perceived by not only the public, but also those that would seek to do harm to those in public safety? Some feel the flag is an attempt to incite further violence against those who, to our very core, have dedicated our lives to protecting all lives.
Should we potentially increase the risk for our firefighters by flying flags, banners or signs in this time of divisiveness,? Sadly, in this unsettled time the danger is possible.
The type of flag -- while strongly supporting our LE (law enforcement) family -- could increase tension or cause a negative response within the community.
Eric Hille's response to the order was posted on Facebook.
I find it heart breaking that we are not allowed to show our support for our Brothers and Sisters in Blue in the event of the recent tragedies of all the Police Officers that have been killed in the line of duty. We can’t shroud our badges or even lower our station flags to half-staff, and this is just simply heart breaking.
In that post Eric Hille makes it very clear that he believes the order to remove the flag came from above the fire chief.
The order to remove the Thin Blue Line Flag from what we were told came from above the Division Chief rank, the Battalion Chief that had to deliver the message was just following orders, as we followed his to remove the flag.
He then explains he was asked to remove all photos from his personal Facebook page, a request he declined.
Not only were we advised to remove the flag and stripe off the door, I was also asked by the department that they would like all the pictures removed from social media and my personal Facebook account. As you can tell, the pictures are still posted and will remain posted to show our support for our Brothers & Sisters in Blue.
Cowardice is the only word to describe the morons who are too terrified to show public support for police in the wake of these recent murders. Complete and utter cowardice.
To that end Eric Hille also has some strong words for his Fire Chiefs.
The only negative thing I will say right now about our top Chiefs is, is that I wish you where this fast to respond to me when I was in the hospital after getting stuck by a car while one duty, I wish you where this fast to respond when I needed my EIDL / Injury benefits approved by the department, which are still denied. I wish you had taken the initiative to visit me in the hospital or at home during the 6 ½ month I was off recovering to see how me and my family where doing. Yesterday was 1 year to the day from me getting hit…. and I still have not heard from any of you.
But such is the world of political correctness where offending someone's delicate sensibilities is a far greater crime than killing cops.
To Eric Hille and Station 48: Well done, men.
To those who shut down Eric Hille and Station 48's expression of support for 3 murdered police officers in Baton Rouge: Shame on you and your cowardice. Turn in your Man Cards. Clearly you have no use for them.