‘You’ve got to stand for something or you will fall for nothing, and I’m not going to fall for nothing…’
(Claire Russel, Liberty Headlines) An 82-year-old grandmother is fight her homeowner association after it ordered her to remove an American flag she had painted on her curb.
Donna Cordero’s retirement community in Peoria, Arizona said that “decorative additions,” including the American flag, are strictly off-limits in the neighborhood of nearly 4,000 homes.
Cordero’s small American flag had been painted beside her address number.
The HOA requires address numbers to be visible on each homeowner’s curb. So when Cordero paid a company to paint hers, she chose to place a flag by it. The widow of two veterans, Cordero believed the flag would honor their sacrifice.
“I thought, wouldn’t that be nice to let people know that the person who lives here still believes in the flag,” she told USA Today.
But the HOA immediately objected. After its routine patrol to “observe the aesthetic appearance of the properties and to ensure they are maintaining ‘the look,’” the HOA notified Cordero that the picture must be removed.
“I couldn’t believe it,” Cordero said. “I’m thinking, ‘Are you joking?’ Of all the things they pay attention to in this community, they’re looking at my little flag? It absolutely upset me. My neighbors that I’ve talked to can’t believe it either.”
Tom Canepa, the HOA’s vice president, said the association’s objection had nothing to do with a lack of patriotism.
“This has nothing to do with being anti-American,” said Tom Canepa, the HOA’s vice president who also chairs the architectural control committee. “We have many residents who fly the flag properly and proudly and the HOA itself has been recognized for our appropriate displaying of the American flag.”
Canepa said the issue amounted to enforcing the clear standard established by the HOA, lest others also decide to adorn their curbs.
“No decorative additions for everyone is probably the best way to be able to keep people from doing things that would not be appropriate,” he continued.
Cordero said she plans on fighting the HOA.
“You’ve got to stand for something or you will fall for nothing, and I’m not going to fall for nothing,” she said. “This is my property, and I just can’t believe anybody would find that flag offensive.”