A largely symbolic resolution opposing the display of the flag of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam on city property was approved Tuesday night by the Garden Grove City Council.
The vote was 6-1 in favor, with Councilman Kris Beard (District 1) opposed. His vote against the resolution was based on the idea that he was against the display of any flags on city property with the exception of the U.S. flag, and perhaps also the banners of the state of California and the city.
Sponsoring the resolution – along with Councilwoman Thu-Ha Nguyen (District 3) – was Councilman Phat Bui (District 4). The measure called for the “heritage flag” of the former Republic of [South] Vietnam to be the only flag of that country displayed on city-owned land.
“We are not asking to raise the Vietnamese flag at City Hall or at the library,” said Bui. But his motivation, he said, was from recent incidents in which people wore apparel in Little Saigon businesses decorated with the flag of the communist government that now rules that country.
He framed the resolution in terms of heading off any public safety issues that could arise from what he called “a distraction” in the Vietnamese community.
But Beard expressed opposition not just to the proposed resolution – which reaffirmed similar action taken in 2003 – but also to the practice of displaying any national flag on city property other than the Stars and Stripes. That would seem to apply to the annual practice of posting American and South Vietnamese flags in the street median of Brookhurst Street in Garden Grove’s Little Saigon area.
“I don’t support this resolution,” he said. “It doesn’t really help in terms of people wearing whatever they want.”
The flag of the former Republic of Vietnam is yellow with three horizontal stripes; the flag of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam is red with a blue star.
Categories: Garden Grove