Unspun Logo

Really Old Glory

Posted by Rick · June 10th, 2005 · 16 Comments

Club One Casino with flags
Click to Enlarge

Here in the Fresno-Clovis area of the Central San Joaquin Valley, people are more than a little proud of the fact that we’re a Red city in the midst of a Blue state. And we’re saddened that those wussy, liberal, unpatriotic, American-hating, stupid Democrats occupy enough of the rest of our state to make everyone think we’re Blue.

After all, there’s no one more patriotic than us. We’re lining our kids up to send them off to defend everything America stands for.

Well, unless you count the American flags hanging from buildings in our downtown area. The City of Fresno has been working hard (hehe) at rejuvenating the downtown area. But either the money is running out, or Mayor Autry and his crew just don’t have time — what with all the religious ceremonies they’re holding at City Hall and around the Court House — to make sure that the flag of the United States is…oh, let’s say “recognizable” as the proud symbol of our great nation.

Club One Casino with flags
Click to Enlarge

As you can see from the first photograph above, the flags above Club One — right across from the front of the Court House — should have been retired long ago. I can’t say for sure, but it appeared to me that their copy of Old Glory is so old that it only had 48 stars. Or maybe that’s just because two of them fell off.

I suppose people going into the club aren’t actually all that concerned. On their way in, all they can see is money, money, money. (Club One is Fresno’s hottest gambling spot.) On their way out, most Club One visitors probably don’t feel much like lifting their heads high anyway.

I tried, months ago, to tell a couple of people at Club One that the appearance of these flags is a disgrace, but they were uninterested. I even told them that I was going to come back and take pictures and then post them up on the Internet. In response, one guard standing inside the doors said to me, “It’s not our responsibility.” Ahhh…to be a proud and patriotic American!

If I could figure out a way to get to those flags, I’d take them down myself. Even the flag that inspired Francis Scott Key probably looked better than the sad rags flapping above Club One Casino.

Categories: The Decline of America


16 responses so far ↓

  • 1 abi // Jun 11, 2005 at 3:29 am

    Now, that just hurts.

    I’m actually surprised. Unless the Fresno area has a more drastic climate than I recall, that damage has taken more than 4 years to do. Which means someone, or a lot of someones, left that wreck up after 9/11.

    I reckon, in these days of stirring tides of patriotism, we should have a hotline for turning in neighbors who don’t respect the flag. (There may actually be one).

    (Snarky thought…maybe someone told them what happens to retired American flags, and they couldn’t stand the thought of burning a flag.)

    Whatever the cause, I hope you shame them into cleaning up their act.

  • 2 Rick Horowitz // Jun 11, 2005 at 10:19 am

    They’ve been up there a long time. I’ve tried more than once to communicate to people who appear to have some positions of authority that this is a disgrace and needs to be fixed.

    As I noted above, I even told them that if nothing was done, I’d come back and take pictures. They literally told me that it wasn’t their responsibility. They didn’t care.

    I thought about trying to find a way to replace them myself, or at least remove the bad ones, but even if I found a way to get to them, I bet I’d be arrested for trespassing and stealing their “glorious” flags.

    It’s just a shameful disgrace.

  • 3 abi // Jun 11, 2005 at 3:01 pm

    You could always give them a new one.

  • 4 Rick Horowitz // Jun 11, 2005 at 3:03 pm

    I actually thought of that. And I have one I’m not using right now, although I don’t know if it’s big enough (considering how high above the street it is). And there are actually TWO shredded U.S. flags up there, plus a California map and a couple other flags for entities that I can’t determine (because they’re so badly damaged).

    Right now, I’m waiting to see if anything comes of my finally posting it to the Internet.

  • 5 Peter Sean Bradley // Jun 12, 2005 at 9:09 am

    OK. Your post got me angry with Club One for two reasons.

    First, you are right; that’s no way to treat the flag.

    Second, how typical of Fresno! We never miss the chance to show the world that we are a second-rate city with a complete lack of self-esteem.

  • 6 Yupki // Jun 12, 2005 at 9:01 pm

    That is indeed no way to treat your flag. Isn’t it a coincidence, many people talking about patriotism these days? Here in Thailand, I envy them because Thais seem so proud flying their flag in their homes — and we’re talking here of new flags. In the Philippines, they’d find you strange if you start displaying your flag in your house. It’s so sad.

  • 7 FresBlog // Jun 13, 2005 at 12:09 am

    Really Old Glory

    Rick over at Unspun provides a humorous post about the sad state of the American Flags above Club One Casino in downtown Fresno.

  • 8 Bob // Jun 13, 2005 at 12:05 pm

    I agree with every word written except for Mr. Bradley (again).

    Has anyone reported this to the city? Aren’t there regulations about flying the flag (such as material condition, illumination at night)? We’re only a second rate city when second rate citizens live there and allow it to be run that way.

    I just called the Mayor’s Office (621-8000). I was put through to the City Council secretary who promised me that she would pass my message to the councilman in that district (Cynthia Sterling) and that I would get a call back.

    In my message, I included this web address so she could see the pictures for herself.

    I sincerely hope that this is addressed and I expect it to be.

    Mr. Bradley, was it really so hard to do this?

  • 9 Rick Horowitz // Jun 13, 2005 at 12:14 pm

    Thanks, Bob! I sent email last week to the Fresno Bee — no response yet — and today I finally had sent an email to the Mayor’s office. (I tried other avenues first because I believe the property is privately-owned.) Maybe, though, if enough people call, the Mayor will step in and do something. I’ll post an update to the story if anything happens.

    By the way, want a little irony? TOMORROW is Flag Day!

  • 10 Sinclair // Jun 13, 2005 at 1:59 pm

    I cannot find anything regarding what citations or punishment might be imposed on an individual for flag rule violations, but I do recall that there was another flag flying in much the same tattered condition as this one about a year ago on the corner of Wishon and Olive. After a bit of bad press, and some radio commentary, the owner of that flag did, in fact, replace it with a new one. With a little push, the same outcome ought to occur here. I will keep further personal derogatory comments to myself.
    I have attached some flag rules here that are from Title 4, United States Code, Chapter 1, sections 1-10, & pursuant Executive order 10834.
    Title 4, United States Code, section 6:
    (a) It is the universal custom to display the flag only from sunrise to sunset on buildings and on stationary flagstaffs in the open. However, when a patriotic effect is desired, the flag may be displayed 24 hours a day if properly illuminated during the hours of darkness.
    (b) The flag should be hoisted brisily and lowered ceremoniously.
    (c) The flag should not be displayed on days when the weather is inclement, except when an all weather flag is displayed.
    (d) The flag should be displayed on all days, especially on New Year’s Day, January 1; Inauguration Day, January 20;…Memorial Day(half-staff until noon)…Flag Day, June 14; Independence Day…and such other days as may be proclaimed by the President of the United States;
    the birthdays of States (date of admission); and on State holidays.
    Section 7:
    (e) The flag of the United States of America should be at the center and at the highest point of the group when a number of flags of States or localities or pennants of societies are grouped and displayed from staffs.
    Frequently asked questions:
    My flag is old and ready to be retired. What should I do?
    Section 8k of the Flag Code (see below) states, “The flag, when it is in such condition that it is no longer a fitting emblem for display, should be destroyed in a dignified way, preferably by burning.” We recommend that you contact your local VFW Chapter and ask them for help properly disposing of your flag. And be sure to consider providing a small donation to them for their assistance. Or you can contact your local Elks Lodge (who created the idea of Flag Day, established officially by President Truman, himself a member of the Elks), the American Legion, or the Knights of Columbus. Some Boy Scout and Girl Scout troups also can provide this service.
    According to Executive Order 10834, official flags (not personal flags) must meet these standards.

    Executive Order 10834 governs flag and pole dimensions, as well as the design of the flag.

  • 11 Steve Malm // Jun 13, 2005 at 3:03 pm

    Call me unpatriotic, but I’m far more concerned about the tattered and torn bodies of our young soldiers in Iraq than the flag-symbol of what the United States could be, once perhaps was, and should be. It’s difficult to get behind a true concern for that “image” of our country when our government tarnishes the “symbol of America” daily with every denial and mistatement offered in support of its policies. I wish America still stood for democracy and freedom, but instead, the tattered flag seems more to hit the point.

    Maybe liberals could mount a movement “Take Back Our Flag,” that would include an idea that our policies should posture our true principles — but it will take many a long time to readjust to the idea that America might truly stand for something once again. I’d like someday to see an America that was truly worthy of what our flag should symbolize, our soldiers fighting for something worthy and noble — only as a last resort.

    Thanks for bringing that glim possibility to the fore.

    Steve Malm

  • 12 Bob // Jun 13, 2005 at 4:18 pm

    And now for the REST of the story …

    Councilwoman Sterling’s office called back. Here’s the issue as they described it to me.

    1 – Club One occupies the first floor of an otherwise vacant hotel.

    2 – Club One admits to owning the flags but cannot get access to change them (via the vacant hotel).

    3 – Sterling’s assistant is trying to determine the owner of the hotel and will request that they allow access for Club One to change the flag. BTW, Club One (via Sterling’s assistant) claims to have new flags ready and waiting once they get access.

    Cudos to Sterling’s assistant (She said her name so quickly, I thought she said Amy. If you read this Amy, you were great!).

  • 13 Rick Horowitz // Jun 13, 2005 at 4:35 pm

    Someone who I know is a regular reader, but doesn’t like posting comments, tells me she researched the building at 1033 Van Ness and the owners are listed as being Club One, Inc.

    Frankly, it doesn’t look like it would be that tough for them to get an extension ladder up to the flags to replace them, if they really wanted to do so.

    But maybe they’re afraid of heights…

  • 14 Bob // Jun 13, 2005 at 7:01 pm

    Just for the record, I emailed Bill McEwen at the Fresno Bee and pointed him to this article. I am hoping that he feels compelled to get involved.

    Also for the record, its surprising to me that a Councilwoman from Fresno (or her staff person) cannot find the owner of that address as quickly as a “friend” of yours who doesn’t like to post comments. It’s all about having friends in high places…maybe high enough to climb a ladder?

  • 15 Brenda Hook // Jun 15, 2005 at 8:55 am

    The flag pictures on this blog reminded me of the tattered soldiers in Iraq. It is quite symbolic of the holes that have been blasted through our soldiers and the fatigue of this long drawn out battle for democracy in a country so far away. America is strong and beautiful and a new flag would be wonderful. Do you need me to call them and put a bug in their ear too?

  • 16 Rick Horowitz // Jun 15, 2005 at 9:45 am

    Well, I think everyone who has a concern for this needs to do their part.

    So far as I can tell, those with the power to change the flags don’t care enough. If there were more public outrage over this disgraceful treatment of our flags, maybe they’d find themselves a stepladder. (The idea that they can’t change the flags because they don’t have access to them is ridiculous; the flags are not that far above their door. The fact appears to be that they just don’t have enough incentive to show respect for the American flag.)

Leave a Comment