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Originally published December 5 2013

Is this even America? Local bar ordered to remove sign thanking veterans for their service

by J. D. Heyes

(NaturalNews) You may not always agree with our country's decisions to send troops to certain parts of the world, but holding the men and women who do the fighting in contempt is not right, no matter how you feel about U.S. foreign policy.

So it's no surprise that veterans and the owner of a local bar and grill in Huntington Beach, Calif., are fuming about a city rule that essentially dishonors the men and women who do our fighting for us.

As reported by CBS Los Angeles:

Veterans are rallying around a local bar whose owners say they have been ordered to remove a sign that salutes their service.

"Thank a veteran for your freedom!" says a large sign perched above Johnny's Booze and Pool. Vets love it and make up a significant part of the establishment's clientele.

Not every city official is being a pinhead

"I love this place. The sign gives me the pride back that I lost ... I struggled a lot when I first came back," one Army vet told CBS2's Stacey Butler.

But after some pinhead complained to the city about the sign, the bar owners say they have been ordered by the city's sign Nazis to remove it. So much for freedom in America. Apparently, there is an ordinance banning signs that haven't been blessed by the ruling masters.

"We received a letter in the mail from the city stating that we have to remove it within two days or they were going to fine us, like, $940," co-owner John Marovic said.

The other co-owner, Johnny Kresimir, told the local CBS affiliate that the pair was only given a few days to take down the sign or face the penalty. He said either way he's going to fight the demand, even issuing a call to action and a plea of support on Facebook.

Not all city officials are being crappy about the sign.

"Huntington Beach Mayor Pro-Tem Matthew Harper says he has contacted the city manager about the issue and is waiting for an answer. Harper says he would support granting a variance to allow the sign to remain standing," CBS LA reported.

Needless to say, the entire issue has some people shaking their heads in disbelief.

"I can understand city ordinances, but it's been up there for 10 years. I don't understand why it's a problem now," one veteran and patron said.

According to the Los Angeles Times, the sign has been in the same place for about six years. But those are merely details. Another report [] says the metal structure holding up the sign has been there for three decades (Kresimir moved the business there in 2003 after his father died).

"If the sign goes down, it's not going to hurt our business. It's just going to hurt the community," said Kresimir.

What's the problem? The city didn't get its pound of silver

As the LA Times further reported:

A notice was left on the bar's door Monday after an anonymous complaint was received earlier in the day, according to the city. But that action has since generated a backlash against the city, on social media and and in the form of an online petition in favor of the sign.

Veterans and supporters of the saloon chimed in, posting reasons why the sign should remain. Even Mayor Pro Tem Matthew Harper voiced his support for the fixture, saying he would defend it if the issue came before the City Council.

City officials have since assured the business owners they won't be fined until they have had a chance to meet in person. But the threat of the fine looms.

Reports said the city has no record of issuing a permit to place the sign structure on the roof, and as such, it either must come down or be blessed by the city masters.


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