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Man's neighbors upset he's flying flag upside down in Obama protest

FLEMING ISLAND -- In a patriotic neighborhood, there's one American flag that's standing out on Veterans Day, but it's also causing outrage amongst neighbors.

"I figure if they can burn the flag, if they can spit on it, if they can put it down as a doormat, why can't I fly it upside down?" says Philip Hoezel, a Fleming Island resident.

First Coast News reports that Philip Hoelzel says he served the Navy for seven and a half years and is now using his first amendment right to express his dissatisfaction with Nov. 6's election results. "Under the conditions normally set for the military at sea, if you fly your flag upside down on a ship it means you're in distress...I think this country is in distress," says Hoezel.

On the morning of Nov. 7 after learning that President Barack Obama was re-elected to a second term, Hoelzel raised his flag upside down for the first time at this home. Veterans Day just happens to be his fifth day of what he plans to be a four-year-long protest, and it's also the day neighbors began to take notice.

"It's very know 26 years in the Navy, current Navy guy and I thought it was an accident," says Mike Walter, who lives down the street from Hoezel. "Then I did a little research and I realized people are doing this in protest and I just can't believe that on Veterans Day you would be so petty as to fly your flag upside down."

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Posted by Times Editor at 10:54:36 pm on November 14, 2012