All across the United States, black and white American flags with one blue stripe through them are beginning to pop up more and more.
They’re being flown from homes:
— nitapowell (@nitacrow) July 10, 2016
As a LEO in Valley, NE I have taken the liberty of lowering my Blue Line Flag to half staff
From fire trucks:
Engine 822, salute to their fallen first responder family. Flying the "thin blue line" flag. pic.twitter.com/8kh99UHiry
— Rural Metro Fire (@RuralMetroCAZ) July 11, 2016
In the form of states:
Got this Texas thin blue line flag stained and put together still alot of work to do on it but it will look good when it…
And painted on walls:
— The E Man???No 2 Liberalism (@DETECTIVE4LIFE) July 11, 2016
According to Flags Unlimited, the significance of the flag’s colors is this:
The Blue represents the officer and the courage they find deep inside when faced with insurmountable odds. The Black background was designed as a constant reminder of our fallen brother and sister officers.
Thin Blue Line USA has more details on the line itself:
The Thin Blue Line represents the relationship of the police in the community as the protectors of the citizenry from the criminal element.
It represents those men and women that are willing to give their life for the peace and harmony of the community they serve. To be an officer, it is no easy task. Everyday brings on new challenges, yet new opportunities do arise.
You make arrests, patrol the streets, and do what no other citizen will ever do. You are the Thin Blue Line that will always stand strong, united, and exhibit true strength from within.
The line featured on the flag is a concept that has been around since 1988.
— Angela Mendola Burke (@Angela_Caliber) June 17, 2016
It has been called the line that separates society from anarchy, and while some firmly stand against altering the U.S. flag in any way, many members of law enforcement say they appreciate this gesture.
Detective Greg Wilking of Salt Lake City, Utah, told us:
“For me it means that people still appreciate the job that we are doing and that they respect law enforcement and care about us.
They recognize us as humans. They understand we have a hard job to do and they are supportive of what we are doing.”
Wilking added that the flag “makes me feel validated that I am here to protect and serve.”