Former soldier ordered to take down ‘offensive’ Aussie flag

The Advertiser | October 09, 2008

http://www.news.com.au/adelaidenow/story/0,22606,24469514-5006301,00.html

A COUNCIL has ordered an ex-soldier to take down the Australian flag which flies outside his house because it has been deemed “offensive” by a neighbour.

Aaron Wilson erected the 5m high flagpole eight weeks ago, in honour of his friends who served in Iraq.

But on Tuesday, Logan City Council called to tell him a neighbour had made a complaint, labelling it “offensive”.

He was told to remove the pole or risk legal action. Mr Wilson, whose father fought in Vietnam, said he was disgusted.

“I find it astonishing that anyone could find the Australian flag offensive,” he said.

“My family and friends have served for the country and the very least I can do is have a flag to show my appreciation for Australia.

“I thought the council had better things to do with their time than persecute people for putting a flag up.” [more …]


Comment:
I left the following comment on the originating article’s comment’s page:

I was told the same thing by the Qld Housing Commission (their version of the Housing Trust) back in 1994. When I refused to remove the flag, I was told that the Union Jack in the corner was offensive to Aboriginals, and accused of being a “Nazi” and a “nutter.” The state police then arrived ordering me to take the Australian flag out of my window. When I again refused, the state police admitted that they did not have the authority to force me to the flag down and threatened to report me to the Federal Police. After they left, I rang the Federal Police who told me I was perfectly within my rights to display the Australian flag. However, if I chose to display it in an attempt to offend a neighbour, I could be charged with Racial Vilification. Since that was not the case, the flag remains to this day in my front window, visible to all who pass by.

This was edited by The Advertiser’s staff to:

I was told the same thing by the Qld Housing Commission (their version of the Housing Trust) back in 1994. When I refused to remove the flag, I was told that the Union Jack in the corner was offensive to some. The state police then arrived ordering me to take the Australian flag out of my window. When I again refused, the state police admitted that they did not have the authority to force me to the flag down and threatened to report me to the Federal Police. After they left, I rang the Federal Police who told me I was perfectly within my rights to display the Australian flag. However, if I chose to display it in an attempt to offend a neighbour, I could be charged with Racial Vilification. Since that was not the case, that flag remains to this day in my front window, visible to all who pass by.

I’m not offended by the change. In fact, newspapers do retain some rights to edit submitted material as is clearly stated whenever someone posts a comment on The Advertiser’s web site:
“Please note that we are not able to publish all the comments that we receive, and that we may edit some comments to ensure their suitability for publishing.”
But I do feel that sweeping the anti-Australian feelings of Australia’s indigenous people under the rug is wrong. It only leads to privileged treatment of the indigenous population by the government, media and other do-gooders, and feelings of ill will by the rest of us who do not receive equal treatment by the government because we happen to be White.

Cailen.

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