Marietta apologizes for military flag flap

Updated:

MARIETTA, Ga. —

The city of Marietta rescinded a warning for a restaurant flying flags supporting the military after the move drew outrage from the restaurant and its customers.

A Marietta code inspector gave a warning to Williamson Bros BBQ for flying a POW/MIA flag and a “We Support Our Troops” flag below the United States flag. Marietta City officials cited a law that stated only governmental flags can be displayed.

The staff at Williamson Bros lowered the flags for the first time in 10 years, brought them inside and then posted the citation on their Facebook page.

“Lot of stupidity and lack of common sense,” one customer told Channel 2’s Ross Cavitt

“We’ve had it up 10 to 12 years and I’m just appalled that anybody, even if it was their job, could ask to take it down,” a restaurant employee said.

“They’re making all sorts of rules. If this country doesn’t get back to where we used to be then we’re over,” a customer told Cavitt.

City leaders quickly got the message and by Thursday afternoon had visited the restaurant, issued an apology, took back the warning and let the flags fly once again.

Marietta officials sent a statement to Cavitt that read, “The city would never have knowingly warned someone for supporting prisoners of war or our military and this was an unfortunate error. We offer our apologies to Williamson Bros, veterans and their families and the community for the insensitivity caused by our mistake.”

“The employee involved did not see the entire flag and assumed they were advertising in violation of city code. We have met with Williamson Bros to apologize and let them know they are welcome to fly the flags. We are also taking steps -- including reviewing internal processes -- to determine how this occurred and prevent this type of mistake from happening again,” the statement concluded.

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