Fiddler’s Hearth bar in South Bend, Indiana, has returned a Thin Blue Line flag to its tribute to first responders and servicemen.
An Irish bar in South Bend, Indiana, has found itself at the heart of the online debate regarding the Thin Blue Line flag, finding those on both sides of the debate on whether this is a symbol of #BlueLivesMatter or not taking to their Facebook page to disagree with both of their decisions.
Fiddler’s Hearth, owned by Carol Meehan, had initially taken the flag down from their corner paying tribute to first responders and servicemen after receiving a complaint that the flag was a symbol of #BlueLivesMatter, apologizing for not knowing of the link.
“We’re here, but this flag says we’re not welcome. We won’t be coming back until it’s gone,” Tonna Robinson wrote on their page.
The bar responded by saying they were unaware of the potential symbolism and had thought it was a tribute to fallen servicemen.
“For years, Fiddler's has had an area of the restaurant dedicated to our first responders and servicemen,” the bar said, after receiving plenty of backlash from those who agreed with Robinson.
“The walls are covered with patches and T-shirts from police and fire departments all over the world, but especially in the USA. We have pictures of fallen local police officers hanging on the wall to honor their service. A ‘We Support Our Troops’ flag hangs there. We offer a 25% discount to all military, police, and firefighters. We hung what we thought was a flag honoring fallen officers in the same area.
“When a customer told us it was actually a ‘Blue Lives Matter’ flag, we checked it out and they were correct. While we obviously honor our first responders and all those who put their lives on the line to keep us safe, altering the #blacklivesmatter slogan only serves to further promote social unrest in our country. The flag is down and will stay down. We are looking for a more appropriate flag honoring our police officers to hang in its place.”
The bar eventually revoked their decision, however, after others told them that the link to #BlueLivesMatter was not there and that the flag does, in fact, pay tribute to servicemen.
On Thursday, Fiddler’s Hearth decided to return the Thin Blue Line Flag to their walls, stating “we've had a lot of discussions with a lot of people about this flag. It was VERY enlightening.”
“We knew it was known as the Thin Blue Line Flag, but we wanted to find out more about its history and what it really means (since we were getting all kinds of interpretations from different people),” they continued, encouraging people to go to thinbluelinefoundation.org to find out more about the organization and the flag.
"The Thin Blue Line represents the men and women of law enforcement that stand between good and evil, order and chaos. The black stripes above the blue line represent the public and the bottom black stripes represent the criminal,” according to the foundation’s website.
“You can see the flag in our police and first responders memorial area at Fiddler's,” the bar concluded.
Over the past week, we've had a lot of discussions with a lot of people about this flag. It was VERY enlightening. We...Posted by Fiddler's Hearth on Déardaoin, 10 Bealtaine 2018
The online battle is still waging, however, with commenters replying to Fiddler’s Hearth to disagree with both their first decision to remove the flag and the decision to replace it.
“Never cave into Social Justice Warriors,” said one user.
“Never apologize to them, and never try to signal your virtue to them. They are wrong, in relation to everything, 99% of the time. As a result of your ignorance, you have lost most of your paying customers it seems.”
While others argued that it is still a symbol of #BlueLivesMatter, commenting, “The problem is that this flag seems to have surfaced in this area as part of Blue Lives Matter which some find undermines the Black Lives Matter movement. I don’t remember seeing these flags ever before that.”
Where do you stand on the Thin Blue Line Flag? Let us know in the comments section, below.