The March will commence, rain or shine, from the Calvary Baptist Church parking lot at 536 South Main Street in King at 10 a.m. Because of the large numbers expected to attend the March, leaders from Calvary Baptist Church, a host of the event, ask marchers to arrive by 10 a.m. if possible. The event will be over at 12:30 pm.
King, NC — For more than a month, people in King have been divided over a flag.
The city council took down the Christian flag that flew over the Veteran’s Memorial at Central Park in September after an Afghan war veteran asked it be taken down. The ACLU then threatened a lawsuit claiming the flag violated the separation of church and state.
Since the flag came down, people in support of flying the flag have staged protests, and even put up their own Christian flag.
A group of veterans is guarding the flag and memorial until this weekend ahead of a planned rally. Not everyone, though, is for the Christian flag being flown.
Tracey, a member of a group called Peace for Life, said the controversy is causing problems in the town. “We are completely divided now. It’s, people hate each other in this town now, if you don’t agree with the flag staying up, you are vilified.”
Peace for Life supports the man they call Anonymous Steve, the war veteran who originally requested the flag be removed. Group members say they believe in equal rights for everyone and following the Constitution. Another group member named Lee Ann said that’s where the flag flap comes in. “Our city officials were here and voted on by ‘we the people,’ and we the people are not just Christians. We’re not just white, black, we’re everything.”
Lee Ann says she is a Christian, and standing up for Anonymous Steve is the right thing to do. “I love everyone, and I’m going to defend Steve, because that’s what Jesus would do.”
This Saturday, October 23, veterans in favor of flying the flag will hold a rally at the memorial.
WFMY News 2
KING, N.C. (WGHP) – Over 500 people attended a public hearing held by the King City Council on Monday to discuss the ongoing Christian flag controversy.
City officials shared three different options they are considering: permanently remove the flag from the memorial, create limited public forum and policy which would designate single flag pole to display flags of religions, religious symbols, or emblems recognized by U.S. military for placement on government markers or to transfer memorial to private entity (such as a Veterans group).
The city council voted to take down the christian flag after the ACLU and another group threatened the city with a lawsuit — a lawsuit that was estimated to cost $200,000 to $300,000 to defeat.
Since the flag was removed, Christian flags can been seen flying from businesses to homes to vehicles
The City Council made no decision Monday night before an overflow crowd of over 500 people.
“I came to stand for Christ,” said Christian Flag supporter James Joyce.
The third option is the most popular option among city officials, because selling the land would put the memorial off public property, which would allow the Christian flag to go back up.
“I believe if our freedoms are worth the sacrifice that our young men and women made throughout our history (then) our freedoms are still worthy,” said Marine Sergeant Nathanial Cline, who is an Iraq veteran.
After Cline addressed the audience, he was given a standing ovation.
Another hot topic in King is a monument at the veteran’s memorial that depicts a soldier kneeling in front of a cross.
An anonymous caller contacted the City of King earlier this month, claiming the monument unconstitutional and threatening a lawsuit if the monument was not taken down by Friday.
The American Legion put up the monument, which sits on city property, several months ago. King City Manager John Cater said the monument would remain at least for now
Large crowd expected for public hearing tonight.
The King City Council voted on Monday to hold a public hearing next week to discuss the Christian flag being taken down at the Veterans Memorial.
Monday is being called “Christian Flag Day” in King in response to the city leaders vote to remove the Christian Flag from the Veteran’s Memorial last month.
According to a flyer being distributed in King, residents are encouraged to proudly fly their flag on Monday.
The flyer encourages citizens, business owners and churches to demonstrate support for the Christian Flag at the Veterans Memorial by flying a Christian flag on this Monday. Veterans are still standing guard at the King Veteran’s Memorial and were joined in the protest by another group on Sunday. The group took part in a prayer walk.
The removal of the Christian flag at the Veteran’s Memorial in King, NC on Sept. 16 has created an unprecedented visitation to the Memorial. People are coming from all over the state to show their support of flying the Christian Flag.
The King City Council in North Carolina decided to take down a Christian flag that had flown at the Veteran’s Memorial since it was built in 2004, after they were threatened with a lawsuit. A local King businessman and Afghanistan war veteran known only as “Steve” initiated this firestorm.
The city attorney told WGHP-TV they had received a letter from the ACLU and the North Carolina chapter of Americans United for the Separation of Church and State vowing to sue if the flag was not taken down. City leaders estimated it would cost as much as $300,000 to fight a possible lawsuit.
City manager John Cater told WGHP-TV it was strictly a matter of economics citing “the enormous cost associated with fighting a potential lawsuit on the issue.”
The flag is not the only worry on city hall’s mind these days. The statue of a soldier kneeling with his gun at the grave of a fallen comrade, placed at the Memorial in the last year, is also under scrutiny by those who claim their First Amendment rights are being violated. The grave in the statue is represented by a cross, which has further fired up the local veteran who is responsible for the removal of the Christian flag.
The veterans placed the Christian flag in front of the memorial and have vowed to stand guard there. One man who is committed to having someone stay there night and day is Ray Martini, a U.S. veteran who lives in Winston-Salem. “This is not about me,” Martini stresses. “I’m just speaking for the majority.”
Martini and many others have committed to keeping their vigil at least through the scheduled protest rally on Sat., Oct. 23. The protest/march will be held on October 23rd at 10:00 AM at Calvary Baptist Church on Main Street in King.