Thursday, August 29, 2013

A Very Simple Request (Denied)

Amherst Select Board meeting 8/26/13

For the second time in less than a year the Amherst Select Board refused to allow the 29 commemorative American flags to fly in the downtown to remember the horror of 9/11, and commemorate the innocent lives taken that awful day.

Watchdog Wire takes up the fight

Pendragon is from Amherst.  Shocked, shocked I say


Anonymous said...

Great- they say no

You can't take no for an answer


Larry Kelley said...

"Where there's a will there's a way."

"Don't give up the fight."

"Never give in--never, never, never, never, in nothing great or small, large or petty, never give in except to convictions of honour and good sense."

Walter Graff said...

Better hurry, this government is now supporting the Taliban with our entry into Syria. Pretty soon we'll be praising the bombers for what used to be used as the logo for channel 11 in NY. .

Anonymous said...

We do not need to 'celebrate' i.e. honor this day .. seriously... we need to get over this wound that others go through every day. I don't need flags in my world or on my streets. We did this to ourselves. Literally.

Anonymous said...

I like the people on our select board. I agree with them on most issues. I am not an overly patriotic person. However, I am sure there are many people in town with Larry's passion. We try to represent everyone else in town. What is wrong with representing those with really strong patriotism. I really don't get why they just don't fly the flag. What is the harm in it? Don't we like to hear all the voices of Amherst?

Walter Graff said...

"Don't we like to hear all the voices of Amherst?"

Ever see "Last American Werewolf in London"

Two guys walk in a bar. One looks around and says to the patrons who are chatting with him, "hey what's that star on the wall for anyway".

That's Amherst.

Walter Graff said...

"We did this to ourselves. Literally."

Sure. We support Israel, the reason the bombers gave for both attacks.

Larry Kelley said...

Anon 2:34 PM

You sound like Stephanie O'Keeffe back in May, 2007, when she had a blog. The day after she voted as a Town Meeting member to support flying the flags annually on 9/11 she wrote:

"I don’t need to have commemorative flags at half-staff downtown to mark my 9/11 remembrance, but it doesn’t hurt.

If you strip away all the overwrought Amherst stuff that becomes part and parcel of this article, it is really saying, “Should we fly flags downtown every year on 9/11?”

And to that, I say – “Sure! Why not?” To me, answers to “why not” were not compelling, but of course, I was in the minority."

Anonymous said...

you not overwrought


Anonymous said...

"Sure. We support Israel, the reason the bombers gave for both attacks."

Anonymous said...

Sweet blue flag over town hall. Moonbats

Anonymous said...

When you call others names like


You draw attention to you own sad limitations
Instead of your typically weak "point"

Would that you were more able to express yourself with egrace and self confidence

Anonymous said...

She just invited you to put the issue on the ballot. And I am wondering why you don't take the hint.

With this blog platform, you can get the necessary signatures in a heartbeat.

I would vote "yes" on a referendum.
I voted "yes" in Town Meeting when it came up. I believe that, if it had come up in Town Meeting to fly the flags once every five years, it still would have lost in Town Meeting. So the current compromise puts you ahead of where you could have been, and what others, especially Town Meeting members, might want.

My sense is that Ms. O'Keeffe sees a difference between her personal druthers (i.e. in support of you on the flags) and her decision-making role on Select Board. There are strong feelings in town about the import of the flag, feelings which I know you and others don't respect. I also don't share them, but I do respect the point of view of those people. I suspect that this is where Ms. O'Keeffe and perhaps other members of the Board are at.

I think many Amherst residents, myself included, are weary of seeing the potential relitigation of so many municipal decisions, whether they are about zoning or flags. So I support the existing compromise, and I condone the Select Board's failure to respond to your pitch, because I believe that our view on the flags actually comes out ahead.

What I am afraid of from a referendum is that the result will end up somehow legitimizing the view that the flags shouldn't fly at all in September. You might win a town-wide vote; you might not.

Your argument the other night seems a bit strained to me, since there are other days also of great carnage in which Americans heroically died, including Pearl Harbor and Antietam, in numbers even greater than 9/11. Your kids (and mine) know very little about those days, also, and the national memory has dimmed on them, also.

Of course, you know that there are other ways to remember besides flying flags all over downtown. I walked the grounds at Antietam several years ago on a quiet, sunny September afternoon, a ghostly experience.

Rich Morse

Walter Graff said...


Yeah I have to laugh at the Jewish conspiracy. Jews run the world, etc. Unfortunately it has little to do with my comment.

Let's look at facts:

Ramzi Yousef who was a mastermind of the first attack mailed letters to various New York newspapers just before the attack in which he claimed he belonged to 'Liberation Army, Fifth Battalion'. These letters made three demands: an end to all US aid to Israel, an end to US diplomatic relations with Israel, and a pledge by the United States to end interference "with any of the Middle East countries' interior affairs." He stated that the attack on the World Trade Center would be merely the first of such attacks if his demands were not met. In his letters Yousef admitted that the World Trade Center bombing was an act of terrorism, but this was justified because "the terrorism that Israel practices (which America supports) must be faced with a similar one."

In the second attack in 2001 Osama bin Laden's declared a holy war against the United States. In his November 2002 "Letter to America" he explicitly stated that al-Qaeda's motives for the attack include: U.S. support of Israel, the Jewish aggression against Muslims in Lebanon, and the presence of U.S. troops in Saudi Arabia amongst a few others.

So you can cry fouls, racism, anti-jewish whatever bullshit (half my family is Jewish), but all of the attacks in all of the world by all of the Muslims are mostly based in the fact that the state of Israel was formed in 1948 as retribution for the atrocities of WWII.

It's always about Jewish/Muslim and always will be until we destroy the world over it. No Jews don't own the world, they have just been smart enough to survive in it.

Dr. Ed said...

Larry, it is time to play hardball.

Demand that they NOT fly the flags on Labor Day. Argue that it is a political speech supporting organized labor or whatever.

And do the same for the next holiday.

They are not going to not fly them ever so appeasing you is easier than the legal defense.

Anonymous said...

Something I have never understood is why the UN flag fis flown over the town common (at least the part in front of town hall), but not the MA state flag. Seems wrong on several levels.

Larry Kelley said...

A little before my time, as it dates back to the early 1970s.

Hard to find anyone around now who remembers the story of why it ended up in front of Town Hall.

Anonymous said...

Are there flag holders downtown where the flags would be placed? If so are they accessible for someone from the public to maybe place their own flags there? Ya know.. like anonymously....

Larry Kelley said...

Yes, the utility poles have flag holders but the town owns the poles and the Select Board has control "over the public way."

But standing in front of one of the poles while holding a flag would be protected by the First Amendment.

Just one of the many great things our flag represents.

Anonymous said...

Why not just get a bunch of people to turn out holding flags. No one is stopping you.

Larry Kelley said...

I do that every year the town refuses to fly the commemorative flags, which has been most of them.

Anonymous said...

i'm so glad your annual request was rejected. it is NOT the "right" thing to do, it's simply something you would prefer. i read an article just after 9/11 that was all about how people like you love events like this because it lets you have some kind of weird elevation of emotions; a thrill, really. you want to keep stoking the flames just for a kick. it's not empathy, compassion, or honor (whatever THAT is). it's pure selfishness (masquerading as some noble commitment). do something actually useful for veterans - wash their dishes.

Larry Kelley said...

Actually CAN, it's not about "veterans".

The vast majority of those slaughtered on 9/11, unlike Pearl Harbor, were civilians.

Not only are you a Cowardly Anon Nitwit, but you are also not very bright.

Anonymous said...

meh - you pick up on one offhand remark at the end and use it as your wedge to avoid real discussion. typical larry for you.

Larry Kelley said...

Capitalize much?