Do you know the true meaning of The Blue Line Flag? As police wives, it’s important we have our facts straight so we know how to respond to family and friends with the correct information. There are misguided American’s who sorely misunderstand its meaning, and as a result, we see their threats causing departments, like LAPD, to take down their Blue Line Flags.
Within our culture are people who hate the police…those who want to dehumanize and devalue the men and women who protect and serve. They claim the Blue Line Flag is divisive and represents an “us vs them” mentality. Some says it’s a symbol of a racist police force or that the flag is a claim to power informing the town the police will assert their authority no matter what. Others feel the flag violates the US Flag Code and is unpatriotic. Unfortunately, some extremist groups have misused the Blue Line Flag and that has contributed to the tarnished meaning of it. Facts or truth don’t factor into any of the above beliefs and that makes me sad.
The Blue Line Flag began as a black flag with a blue horizontal line running across the middle. Thin Blue Line USA created another version of the flag with the 13-stripe American Flag and a blue line across the middle. This flag was specifically made to help raise funds to support families of fallen officers.
To the law enforcement community and the American’s who support the police, the Blue Line Flag is a symbol of sacrifice, strength, integrity, honor and dedication. When an officer is killed in the line of duty, the flag is flown high to show honor for the life lost, and to honor those still wearing a badge.
The colors of the flag have meaning. The solid black background serves as a reminder of fallen officers. The blue line in the middle of the flag shows the dividing line between law abiding citizens (top portion) and those who intend to cause harm, chaos and destruction (bottom portion). The color blue signifies courage and inner strength officers require daily to protect and serve. And there are 3 meanings to the thin blue line that runs through the middle of the flag:
- The thin line of life and death that law enforcement men and women walk every day.
- The job of the police officer who must separate good from bad while restoring peace amidst chaotic situations.
- The line itself represents what police protect…the wall between chaos, lawlessness & anarchy and order, respect and peaceful living.
The flag is a symbol of a brotherhood/sisterhood that all police officers share no matter where they live and work. It isn’t any different than other first responders’ flags, like the Red Line Flag for fire or the Green Line Flag for the military. Even as police wives we enjoy wearing Blue Line Flag t-shirts or sweatshirts, not to humiliate others, but to support our husbands and to let them know we understand the difficult job they have. It also gives us a sense of community because the LEOW life can be lonely and misunderstood.
I hope one day the true meaning of the Blue Line Flag will prevail and that all Americans will love and support our domestic heroes. After all when help is needed even those against the police call 9-1-1.