Saturday, October 15, 2011

The Flag needs to go.......I can't eat and see it at the same time...?

Would an American flag in the restaurant "disrupt your dining experience?"    I'm curious.

The Olive Garden says they'd been told that, in their town in Alabama, "NO flags or banners are allowed in restaurants unless they have a private meeting room -- the Calhoun County site doesn't -- and yes, that includes the American flag."

Would that really include the American flag?  REALLY?

What do you think?  Is it so upsetting, so disdainful a flag that it bothers people to have it in their eyesight while they eat?  Which people would be offended by it?   If this were a small Mexican restaurant in that town and the Mexican flag was used as part of decorations, do you think they'd have to take it down?



Always On Watch said...

My gut reaction is patriotic.

However, years ago, when I was in a Christian school, we had to ban all t-shirts that displayed logos. I don't recall if patriotic shirts might have come under that ban, but they might have.

Some of the logos that had been on display were inappropriate for a Christian school. Other logos were pure Madison Avenue. Some of the students had designer t-shirts; other students had cheapies. Yep, you guessed it: teasing and hurt feelings ensued.

But at Olive Garden, we're talking about adults.

I think that the size of the flag and banner would also play into the restaurant's decision.

Thersites said...

I think that Calhoun County should be able to have whatever laws it wants governing the use of "public" spaces.

Joe said...

Actually, my dining experience at Olive Garden has now been permanently disrupted.

And I used to love to eat there.

Z said...

I guess I feel that or T shirts is one thing; finding the American flag offensive to a dining experience is a whole other thing.

and, as I said, I'd be surprised if a Mexican flag hanging for decoration in a MX restaurant would have to go because of the rules for public spaces!

What I'd have liked to have heard is "We have a rule about banners and flags, but not the American flag, of course...who could find THAT offensive..?" (but they do)

tha malcontent said...
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Ducky's here said...

The flag wouldn't bother me as much as eating at Olive Garden.

I can understand why headquarters would want to avoid potential political statements in the general dining area.

Z said...

I'm wondering how an American flag in AMerica is a potential political statement...?
If they don't want Kiwanis to be overheard, don't book them; Kiwanis should have found a restaurant with a private room, anyway, but that's not the point of my post, of course.

Z said...

Meanwhile, we've announced over the wknd that the US is sending Green Berets to Uganda and other regions a to help out, "But the U.S. troops will not fight unless fired upon, the letter said."

So, they're just sitting ducks. marvelous

A Pissed Off Irishman said...

Ducky's here said...
The flag wouldn't bother me as much as eating at Olive Garden.

I think that I'd have to agree with that.
Although the flag wouldn't bother me anywhere.
In fact just the opposite. The flag to me represents what a great country we have, even in spite of our current problems.

tha malcontent said...

I'm getting sick and tired of these Liberal excuses for others being patriotic.
If they don't like it eat at McDonald's and get sick there. (They may run into Moochie Obama there)

Ticker said...

The county has overstepped it's bounds and infringed upon the rights of the property holder, in this case, Olive Garden. The county may be able to determine the flying of flags in and on county property but not on private property.
Unfortunately we began to give up those rights to government when we allowed them to control smoking on private property and private business. So we have brought this upon ourselves. Little by little our rights have been and are being taken away by government be it local, state or Federal. All in the name of Freedom?
How about all in the name of PC, the downfall of America.

Elmers Brother said...

Z the Congress passed legislation in May of 2010 giving the President authority to send troops to Uganda. Of course they did it n the middle of the night.

Pris said...

Ticker is absolutely right. The first thing that comes to mind is, what right does a govt. entity have to tell a private business what they can or cannot display on their own property?

The public can choose to eat there, but it's not public property. If someone doesn't like it, he can eat somewhere else.

Is the term "public space" the new PC guideline? Since when? Hell, the minute you leave your front yard you're in public space.

So if this is the case, anything can be banned, including walking down the sidewalk, or allowing your children to play hopscotch on the sidewalk, after all it's a "public space", isn't it?

Give me a break, we've lost our minds!

Z said...

Ticker, I think private property is entitled to have its own rules, too:
It still boils down to some who were supposedly not going to ENJOY THEIR DINING EXPERIENCE as much because that pesky flag was in their view . grrrr

Elbro, right...and whether there was approval given or not, any president should announce at a time when people are listening about sending troops anywhere, don't you think?
Obviously, we wouldn't in an ambush type of situation where we thought we'd have a better chance if we sneak in somewhere...but, these days, I don't think America has the guts or the will to go so against PC that they'd even try anything without ANNOUNCING IT TO THE WORLD first.

Speedy G said...

Meanwhile, a decision by a private company to NOT display the American flag becomes a point of controversy.

Does a private employer have the right to deny an employee the right to wear a flag pin on his "uniform"?

Z said...

Speedy, beyond anybody's RIGHTS, what is offensive about a FLAG and who is it that's offended?



Speedy G said...

Anybody here remember all the criticism Barack Obama received over his refusal to wear a flag pin?

If "flag pins" are mandated to be worn, should an employee have the "right" NOT to wear it?

Speedy G said...

I personally don't care if there is a consistent policy, everywhere. If some people wish to "mandate" displays, I'm fine with it. If others want to "ban" displays, I'm fine with it.

The point it, that flags and flag pins do NOT confer "patriotism" upon people. THAT is something one either has, or they DON'T have. And appearances can be deceiving, either way.

Speedy G said...

Would it matter to this discussion if it were an "Eat Here and Get Gas" sign? Lapel pin?

Z said...

Speedy, FINE....I'm asking about the mindset of supposed AMERICANS who'd MIND eating in view of OUR FLAG..
I think that's different from the banning/not banning you're talking about.

NOBODY should be made to wear a pin; that does not connote patriotism, but to DISS IT? To have Tom Brokaw and PHil Donahue talking shortly after 9/11 about how silly it is for people to wear them as if that's their badge of honor?
I'd been living out of country by the time I heard that discussion and a LOT had changed since the four years I'd been gone, but I hadn't thought things were so different we'd have to discuss whether displaying a flag was okay.

Z said...


Speedy G said...

Then wear it, Z. Or don't.

Just let other people decide for themselves whether to do likewise. That's all I'm saying.

Speedy G said...

The decision to ban the flag wasn't Olive Garden's was a local ordinance.

When in Rome...

Speedy G said...

I'm just surprised that the local ordinance banning flag displays was in Alabama, and not Massachusetts.

Z said...

Speedy, we're in agreement but talking circles around each other;

What sickens me is the very fact that the AMERICAN FLAG can't hang anywhere it damned well pleases :)

Speedy G said...

Well, with any luck, the bad publicity will convince the people in Alabama to change their no display ordinance. But even then, there will always be people telling others what they can and cannot do. It's just a fact of life we don't seem capable of avoiding. ;)

Pris said...

Displaying the American flag is not a political statement, it is a recognition of respect and love of country.

If anyone thinks it's political, they've lost their perspective of what the flag stands for. It's simple. it is a revered symbol of our country.

If you do not revere your country, it's sad, but to deny others to revere our country, is not your right, nor is it the right of government to deny it.

If you are offended, go somewhere where you're comfortable. This is a personal issue, not a state or local govt. issue.

Personally for me, I'd love to eat in a restaurant which displays our flag.

Where does it all end? And who get's to decide what is and isn't appropriate?

Our freedom is eroding everyday, and if we're not careful it'll be gone and we'll wonder what happened.

And the answer to that is, we didn't resist, we hoped this assault would end, and it won't unless we speak up. No guts no glory my friends!

Ticker said...

Pris, In Calif "public space" includes your own home. There have been attempts by cities and some passed that ban smoking in YOUR OWN HOME.
I don't smoke but damned if I wouldn't go ahead and light up just so I could shot the first sob who tried to come in my door and tell me I couldn't.

Kids playing hopscotch on the sidewalk or driveway in front of their home? HOA's have banned such in Austin Tx, "nanny state" arm pit of Texas. Using chalk is damaging to the sidewalk and a distraction to drivers in the drive way.
IT WASHES OFF FOR CRYING OUT LOUD. Never the less some yankee liberal asshole was in charge of the HOA and wrote the asinine rule. Musta been kin to duckbutt.

Want another one? The town of Highland Village, TX demanded a man take down his flagpole in his yard, one he had owned for over 40 years because flags are not allowed under the new rules. I was looking at a house to buy in that community when this occurred. I had written an offer, the seller was accepting my offer and I said HELL NO. I will not buy a house in a community where the US Flag can not be flown on private property. I wrote scathing letters to the board and to the so called town manager. I got one reply from one board member who agreed with me. The town manager refused to acknowledge my letter or my request to speak to her. When one of the Dallas papers and the TV station showed up on her front doorstep with me in the mix, she had a change of heart. The FLAG stayed. The gentleman who was a WW2 vet, winner of a bronze star and two Purple Hearts was happy. I still didn't buy the house since I had no guarentee that some other fool would not attempt to include the US Flag in the rules against flags again.

One small step at a time and soon all our freedoms will be gone.

Z said...

An occasional commenter here emailed Olive Garden her dismay at what had happened and got this in return, in case anybody's interested:

Dear Guest:
We are very sorry for any misunderstanding about this issue. We do not have a policy at Olive Garden concerning bringing the American flag into our restaurants. Some members of our team were misinformed about company policy by our corporate office. As a company we take responsibility for that and we regret it. We take pride in how we communicate to our restaurants and we are correcting this so it doesn’t happen again. Like all Americans we have nothing but the utmost respect and admiration for the American flag and everything it symbolizes. In fact, we periodically provide American flag collar pins to our employees to wear while serving guests. We welcome anyone who wishes to bring the flag into our restaurants.


John Caron
President, Olive Garden

Mr. AOW said...
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Always On Watch said...

Thanks for posting that letter, Z.

Mr. AOW haven't been to Olive Garden in a long time. Maybe we'll make the trip now!

Z said...

AOW, thank you for acknowledging that...I was in such a rush when I got that email but felt I should take the time to get it here asap, though I didn't know if anybody'd keep reading this thread.
Thanks xxx

Pris said...

Ticker, I applaud you for your activism. More people should speak up as you did.

We smoke in our home and it's not a problem.

We have a family a couple of doors down from us with a flagpole and the flag flying high. I love that. No problem here.

Wow, I just grabbed that hopscotch example out of thin air and now I find out it's true in Texas of all places? Talk about control freaks!

One nice thing about a small city such as ours is, you can actually call as I have a few times, and talk to a commissioner, or head of a Dept.