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Ban of "thin blue line" flag at Maryland police station slammed by "disgusted" governor

Last week, a Maryland boy donated a wooden "thin blue line" flag to his local police station. Now a decision by a county executive to ban the station from displaying the flag is drawing criticism from Governor Larry Hogan.

CBS affiliate WUSA-TV reports that Germantown resident James Shelton and his son Forrest gave custom wooden American flags to the Fifth District Police Station in Germantown on October 28. They also delivered the wooden flag to Fire Station 21 in North Potomac, which featured a red line instead of blue.

On October 30, Montgomery County Police posted a photo  on Facebook of Shelton and his son in front of the station with the donated flag and several officers.

Thank you to resident James Shelton, who presented Montgomery County 5th District officers with a wooden American Flag...

Posted by Montgomery County Police Department on Wednesday, October 30, 2019

The post sparked outrage, with people commenting that the blue line was a symbol used by white supremacists during the riots in Charlottesville, Virginia. Others said the line represents the Blue Lives Matter movement — which some consider a racist response to the Black Lives Matter movement.

WUSA-TV reported that Democratic Montgomery County Executive Marc Elrich said the flag provides a symbol of "support" to some, but is a symbol of "dismissiveness" to others.

Hogan, a Republican, said in a series of tweets Sunday that he was "offended and disgusted" that Elrich had prohibited officers from displaying the flag.

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