7 April 2004

US village bans Aussie flag

Last year -- two years after Mrs Hogberg and her husband Clarence, 82, moved into their home north of Tampa -- the Windermere Garden Villas Home Owners Association board passed a community bylaw banning any flag apart from the US Stars and Stripes.

The Hogbergs applied to keep their Australian flag but were refused. A request from their neighbours, retired US Lieutenant Colonel Dick Jones and his wife, to fly the US Marine Corps flag, was granted immediately.

An announcement published in the Windermere community newsletter last month stated the Jones' request was authorised 'with great appreciation for their years of military service' and went on to add 'we are all honoured to have the Jones' as our neighbours'.

In a letter of appeal to be considered today by the Windermere board, Mrs Hogberg writes her husband served as a US Navy pilot in World War II and her first husband, Dr Donald Gibson, was a US Navy flight surgeon.

Seven of Mrs Hogberg's uncles fought alongside US troops in the Pacific during World War II.

'I believe I should point out, in case you are unaware of the facts, that Australia was a staunch ally of the USA in WWII, Korea, Vietnam, and the Gulf Wars,' her letter reads.

Mrs Hogberg, who also refers to Australia's military commitment in Iraq and Australia's losses in the Bali and September 11 terrorism attacks, writes: 'This is the first time in my life that I have felt discriminated against because of my Australian race/heritage/origin.

'Surely the Australian flag can not be offensive to anyone for any reason in the USA.'

Weird, weird, weird...

No comments: