Maryland Gov Blasts County Official for Banning 'Thin Blue Line' Artwork from Police Station

After a Maryland county official barred his police department from publicly displaying a “thin blue line” flag, Gov. Larry Hogan criticized the official’s decision in a series of tweets Sunday.

On Oct. 30, the Montgomery County Police Department posted a message on Twitter thanking a man for giving the department a thin blue line flag — used to honor law enforcement officers — “in recognition of National First Responders Day.”

According to CNN, resident James Shelton and his son made the flag for the department.

The department said the flag would be displayed in one of its stations.

On Nov. 1, however, the department added an update, including a note from County Executive Marc Elrich, a Democrat.

“The flag provides a symbol of support to some but it is a symbol of dismissiveness to others,” the department quoted Elrich as saying.

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“Because it is divisive, the flag will not be posted at the 5th District nor in any public space within the Police Department.”

“Under my administration, we are committed to improving police relations with the community and will immediately address any action that stands against our mission.”

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Hogan wrote Sunday that he was “offended and disgusted” by Elrich’s actions, calling out the executive by name.

“I have attended the funerals of fallen law enforcement officers across our state, and I take time to thank them every day for their dedicated service and sacrifice,” the popular Republican governor wrote.

“We proudly hang this very same American flag in Government House in their honor,” he continued. “To outlaw these American flags from being hung in county buildings by law enforcement officers is outrageous and unconscionable.

“I strongly call on Mr. Elrich to immediately reverse this terrible decision and to apologize to the police and the citizens of Montgomery County.”

Elrich responded to Hogan’s comments by insisting that the flag was “not something that a lot of people are comfortable with,” according to WRC-TV.

Do you think the Montgomery County Police Department should be allowed to display the "thin blue line" flag?

“He’s the governor of a state that’s got a whole lot of black citizens, and he’s got to know the sensitivity of this issue,” the county executive told the Washington NBC affiliate in a phone interview published Monday.

The executive’s left-leaning governance has given Montgomery County national media attention before.

In July, Elrich signed an executive order prohibiting employees of the county from asking residents about their immigration status as part of his efforts to make his Montgomery County a “sanctuary county.”

In the months after the order was announced, numerous illegal immigrants were arrested in the county on charges of rape or sexual assault.

Under pressure from angry residents, Elrich rolled back parts of his executive order this week.

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Bradley Evans has been an editor with The Western Journal since 2019. A graduate of Grove City College, he has previously served on the editorial staff of The American Spectator.
Bradley Evans has been an editor with The Western Journal since 2019. A graduate of Grove City College, he has previously served on the editorial staff of The American Spectator.