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Source: MyFox Colorado
Date: July 13, 2007
Byline: unsigned

HOA Backs Down in Upside-Down Flag Dispute

Iraq war protestor can continue to fly flag upside-down

WHEAT RIDGE — A woman who angered some neighbors by displaying the United States flag upside-down can continue to do so after her Homeowners Association decided not to pursue further action.

Beth Hammer has been flying the flag upside-down from the side of her home since March to protest the Iraq war.

Neighbors complained to the Cambridge Park Homeowners Association which, in April, demanded that Hammer remove the flag, saying it violated community policy.

According to the HOA, U.S. flags must be flown in compliance with the Federal Flag Code which states "the flags should never be displayed with the union down, except as a signal of dire distress in instances of extreme danger to property or life."

Hammer claimed the HOA was attempting to silence her freedom of speech and expression.

"We're losing lives, liberties and our honor in this terrible, terrible war," Hammer told Fox 31.

"The question of whether an individual has such a legal right to ignore the Association's Policy with regard to display of the American Flag is not a settled issue," the Cambridge Park Homeowners Associate said in a written statement Friday.

"The Hearing Board finds that it is informed in all aspects of this matter, and in good faith finds that the best interests of all the Association's members would not be served by pursuing enforcement under these specific circumstances. The financial and other resource costs to the Association outweigh any harmful impact this violation may have."

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