STRONGSVILLE, Ohio — Hundreds made their way to Strongsville’s city headquarters Tuesday night to attend a rally in support of police.
“We want to be there for our police,” said resident Cheryl Winwood.
Shannon Burns of Strongsville’s GOP party said the rally is a response to the last city council meeting in July.
“The last council meeting a group by the name of Indivisible Strongsville came out and came to our council meeting and tried to present fake charges of racism against our police,” said Burns.
Indivisible Strongsville is affiliated with a national progressive political group known as Swing Left. At the July council meeting Indivisible member Russ Smith told council members that the Blue Lives Matter Flag in the Strongsville Police Department lobby is divisive.
“The flag has been flown by some residents in apparent rebuttal to the principles to the Black Lives Matter movement, symbolizing the divisiveness that grips not only Strongsville, but the nation, and we feel that the city of Strongsville should not be party to such polarizing political issues,” said Smith.
Burns said that is not the case and the wooden flag inside the police department should stay where it is.
“The thin, blue line flag is exactly a memorial for those who have lost their lives, for those who have defended our freedom and defended our law and order, and fake claims of racism aren’t going to have that taken down,” he said.
But people came out Tuesday night to stand united behind their police department as a whole, not just the Blue Lives Matter flag.
“I grew up in this community and our police officers have always been phenomenal,” said Mary Kaminski. “I don’t understand why they want to take something away that stands for good.”
Members of Indivisible Strongsville were not in attendance Tuesday evening and could not be reached for comment.