A patriotic restaurant owner in northern Illinois is facing fines of $200 – all because he decided to fly an American flag outside his business, according to a report.
Terry Trobiani, the owner of Gianelli’s, says he placed two flags along the road in front of his business to celebrate Independence Day.
Just two days later, he was ticketed for “improper display” of what the city is calling “‘temporary signage.”
According to Trobiani the village unfairly ticketed the restaurant for having American flags outside of the establishment. But village officials said the issue is Trobiani’s placement of the flags on Route 176 right-of-way, not the flag itself.
He also said that he received massive support from patriots across the country who have been reaching out to him. Over the past few days, as many as 50 protesters have gathered at the restaurant to show their support for the family-owned business.
“The American flag is a symbol of patriotism,” Trobiani said. “It’s not a sign. They’re equating it with open/closed. Dine-in, sign out.”
Doug Underwood, the village president in Prairie Grove – about 52 miles northwest of Chicago, near the Wisconsin state line – told FOX 32 that the fines have nothing to do with patriotism. He claimed Trobiani was ticketed for posting his flag too close to the highway – and officials feared the flag could eventually be blown into traffic.
“Why does the American flag fall under your sign ordinance? Why is the American flag a sign? It’s a symbol of patriotism,” Terry Trobiani said. https://t.co/euvpV721fs
— FOX 32 News (@fox32news) July 23, 2021
“I love the United States flag. I’m a patriot myself,” Underwood told the station.
The official also accused Trobiani of using the American flag to promote his business.
“I think it’s disgraceful,” Underwood told FOX 32, “because he’s using the American flag as a tool to further his business interests.”
The restaurant said that he’s unable to pay his ticket unless he signs a soviet-style letter admitting his guilt along with a subsequent letter promising that he will comply with every sign ordinance in the Village of Prairie Grove, forever. He plans to fight them in court “even if it costs more than paying the fine.”
Here’s what Trobiani said about their flawed reasoning for the citations during an interview with Fox News:
“The American flag is a symbol of patriotism, it’s not a sign. They’re equating it with open-closed, dine in-dine out, a product that you would serve in a restaurant. That’s why it falls under sign ordinance.”
The Village of Prairie Grove denies Trobiani’s claim, stating that their opposition is about the “location of the flag” rather than the flag itself.
However, Trobiani told Fox News that this was not the case and explained that the city has, in effect, banned the American flag by designating it as a “sign” and placing a permanent ban of temporary signage on properties.
“They have a permanent ban on temporary signage, so by designating the American flag as a sign, it falls into their sign ordinance. So they’re saying it’s not about the flag, it is about the flag.”
“If it was actually about the position of the flag or the display of the flag, they should have ticketed me for that and they didn’t.”
Here is the full Fox News interview:
Watch it here: Youtube/Fox 32 Chicago
Like the truly committed hypocrite he is, David Underwood, the Democrat president of Prairie Grove’s Board, called Trobiani “disgraceful” for “using the flag as a tool to further his business interests.” In his weak excuse as to why the citations were issued, he said that the flags could have blown into the road.
No surprise there, just the sight of an American flag triggers these Marxists.