American flags allegedly mowed over by city crew

American flags allegedly mowed over by city crew

This is a discussion on American flags allegedly mowed over by city crew within the Off Topic & Humor Discussion forums, part of the The Back Porch category; American flags allegedly mowed over by city crew Wyoming tribune eagle ^ | June 4 2007 | Brandon Quester Posted on 06/05/2007 2:04:28 PM PDT ...

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Thread: American flags allegedly mowed over by city crew

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    Senior Member Array Shadowsbane's Avatar
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    American flags allegedly mowed over by city crew

    American flags allegedly mowed over by city crew
    Wyoming tribune eagle ^ | June 4 2007 | Brandon Quester


    Posted on 06/05/2007 2:04:28 PM PDT by rwh


    Members of the American Legion Post 6 spoke out Sunday after a city grounds crew allegedly mowed through, and drove over, nearly 100 American flags honoring the gravesites of war veterans at Olivet Cemetery early last week.

    Shock and utter disbelief was the reaction from Legion members such as Ross A. Smith, cemetery chairman with the American Legion.

    "This is complete disregard and complete disrespect. You don't treat the American flag like that. That's a symbol of our American nation," Smith said. "As citizens of the United States, we need to honor our veterans 24-7. And for seven days we can't honor them? I'm in total disbelief."

    According to Smith, the American flags placed on veteran gravesites the Saturday of Memorial Day weekend remain until the following Saturday.

    Smith said that in the past, if the grass needed to be mowed before the seven days had passed, the flags were removed and then replaced when the grounds crew had finished.

    The flag desecration was discovered by community volunteer David Heath while making a daily trip to Olivet Cemetery to replace fallen and unserviceable flags with replacements from the American Legion Post 6.

    Heath said he was shocked by what he saw.

    "They (American flags) were all laying on the ground, just like garbage," Heath said. "If they would have called to say they were mowing, I would have been out there pulling flags in front of them."

    In a letter written to the American Legion Post 6, Heath described what he saw after arriving at Olivet Cemetery.

    "On Tuesday May 29th or Wednesday May 30th, I picked up numerous flags that were either ran over or cut up by the grass-cutting crew at the cemetery. I could tell the damage was caused by the mowers because I saw wheel marks over the portion of the staff and the condition of some of the flags," wrote Heath.

    After spending nearly two hours replacing the flags at the cemetery, Heath returned the damaged flags to the American Legion Post 6 and notified a worker of what he had seen.

    Members of the American Legion Post 6 said they want whoever is responsible for the flag desecration to be held responsible and to learn a little flag etiquette.

    "The city should be able to assure the citizens that it won't happen again," said Legion member Ed Routon. "They should hold themselves to every standard when representing the American flag."

    Offices for the City of Cheyenne Parks and Recreation Department were closed Sunday and were consequently unavailable for comment.
    Found at http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1845392/posts
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    VIP Member Array PatrioticRick's Avatar
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    Illegal immigrants mowing the lawns?
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    Senior Member Array Juggernaut's Avatar
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    That just makes me sick. Tonight on the weather channel I saw a clip of some city with thunderstorms just before a commercial break, and it showed the American Flag blowing around like crazy IN THE RAIN! When are people going to learn flag etiquette? I know they didn't teach it when I was in grade school, my dad taught me the Etiquette of the Flag and he wasn't even born in this country.
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    VIP Member Array PatrioticRick's Avatar
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    My flag flies in the rain, but it's an all weather flag.

    The Flag Code
    Title 4, United States Code, Chapter 1
    As Adopted by the National Flag Conference, Washington, D.C., June 14-15, 1923, and Revised and Endorsed by the Second National Flag Conference, Washington, D.C., May 15, 1924. Revised and adopted at P.L. 623, 77th Congress, Second Session, June 22, 1942; as Amended by P.L. 829, 77th Congress, Second Session, December 22, 1942; P.L. 107 83rd Congress, 1st Session, July 9, 1953; P.L. 396, 83rd Congress, Second Session, June 14, 1954; P.L. 363, 90th Congress, Second Session, June 28, 1968; P.L. 344, 94th Congress, Second Session, July 7, 1976; P.L. 322, 103rd Congress, Second Session, September 13, 1994; P.L. 225, 105th Congress, Second Session, August 12, 1998; and P.L. 80, 106th Congress, First Session, October 25, 1999.

    4. Pledge of Allegiance to the flag; manner of delivery
    The Pledge of Allegiance to the Flag, ''I pledge allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America, and to the Republic for which it stands, one Nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.'', should be rendered by standing at attention facing the flag with the right hand over the heart. When not in uniform men should remove their headdress with their right hand and hold it at the left shoulder, the hand being over the heart. Persons in uniform should remain silent, face the flag, and render the military salute.

    5. Display and use of flag by civilians; codification of rules and customs; definition
    The following codification of existing rules and customs pertaining to the display and use of the flag of the United States of America is established for the use of such civilians or civilian groups or organizations as may not be required to conform with regulations promulgated by one or more executive departments of the Government of the United States. The flag of the United States for the purpose of this chapter shall be defined according to sections 1 and 2 of this title and Executive Order 10834 issued pursuant thereto.

    6. Time and occasions for display
    (a) It is the universal custom to display the flag only from sunrise to sunset on buildings and on stationary flagstaffs in the open. However, when a patriotic effect is desired, the flag may be displayed 24 hours a day if properly illuminated during the hours of darkness.
    (b) The flag should be hoisted briskly and lowered ceremoniously.
    (c) The flag should not be displayed on days when the weather is inclement, except when an all weather flag is displayed.
    (d) The flag should be displayed on all days, especially on New Year's Day, January 1; Inauguration Day, January 20; Martin Luther King, Jr.s birthday, the third Monday in January; Lincoln's Birthday, February 12; Washington's Birthday, third Monday in February; Easter Sunday (variable); Mother's Day, second Sunday in May; Armed Forces Day, third Saturday in May; Memorial Day (half-staff until noon), the last Monday in May; Flag Day, June 14; Independence Day, July 4; Labor Day, first Monday in September; Constitution Day, September 17; Columbus Day, second Monday in October; Navy Day, October 27; Veterans Day, November 11; Thanksgiving Day, fourth Thursday in November; Christmas Day, December 25; and such other days as may be proclaimed by the President of the United States; the birthdays of States (date of admission); and on State holidays.
    (e) The flag should be displayed daily on or near the main administration building of every public institution.
    (f) The flag should be displayed in or near every polling place on election days.
    (g) The flag should be displayed during school days in or near every schoolhouse.

    7. Position and manner of display
    The flag, when carried in a procession with another flag or flags, should be either on the marching right; that is, the flag's own right, or, if there is a line of other flags, in front of the center of that line.
    (a) The flag should not be displayed on a float in a parade except from a staff, or as provided in subsection (i) of this section.
    (b) The flag should not be draped over the hood, top, sides, or back of a vehicle or of a railroad train or a boat. When the flag is displayed on a motorcar, the staff shall be fixed firmly to the chassis or clamped to the right fender.
    (c) No other flag or pennant should be placed above or, if on the same level, to the right of the flag of the United States of America, except during church services conducted by naval chaplains at sea, when the church pennant may be flown above the flag during church services for the personnel of the Navy. No person shall display the flag of the United Nations or any other national or international flag equal, above, or in a position of superior prominence or honor to, or in place of, the flag of the United States at any place within the United States or any Territory or possession thereof: Provided, That nothing in this section shall make unlawful the continuance of the practice heretofore followed of displaying the flag of the United Nations in a position of superior prominence or honor, and other national flags in positions of equal prominence or honor, with that of the flag of the United States at the headquarters of the United Nations.
    (d) The flag of the United States of America, when it is displayed with another flag against a wall from crossed staffs, should be on the right, the flag's own right, and its staff should be in front of the staff of the other flag.
    (e) The flag of the United States of America should be at the center and at the highest point of the group when a number of flags of States or localities or pennants of societies are grouped and displayed from staffs.
    (f) When flags of States, cities, or localities, or pennants of societies are flown on the same halyard with the flag of the United States, the latter should always be at the peak. When the flags are flown from adjacent staffs, the flag of the United States should be hoisted first and lowered last. No such flag or pennant may be placed above the flag of the United States or to the United States flag's right.
    (g) When flags of two or more nations are displayed, they are to be flown from separate staffs of the same height. The flags should be of approximately equal size. International usage forbids the display of the flag of one nation above that of another nation in time of peace.
    (h) When the flag of the United States is displayed from a staff projecting horizontally or at an angle from the window sill, balcony, or front of a building, the union of the flag should be placed at the peak of the staff unless the flag is at half-staff. When the flag is suspended over a sidewalk from a rope extending from a house to a pole at the edge of the sidewalk, the flag should be hoisted out, union first, from the building.
    (i) When displayed either horizontally or vertically against a wall, the union should be uppermost and to the flag's own right, that is, to the observer's left. When displayed in a window, the flag should be displayed in the same way, with the union or blue field to the left of the observer in the street.
    (j) When the flag is displayed over the middle of the street, it should be suspended vertically with the union to the north in an east and west street or to the east in a north and south street.
    (k) When used on a speaker's platform, the flag, if displayed flat, should be displayed above and behind the speaker. When displayed from a staff in a church or public auditorium, the flag of the United States of America should hold the position of superior prominence, in advance of the audience, and in the position of honor at the clergyman's or speaker's right as he faces the audience. Any other flag so displayed should be placed on the left of the clergyman or speaker or to the right of the audience.
    (l) The flag should form a distinctive feature of the ceremony of unveiling a statue or monument, but it should never be used as the covering for the statue or monument.
    (m) The flag, when flown at half-staff, should be first hoisted to the peak for an instant and then lowered to the half-staff position. The flag should be again raised to the peak before it is lowered for the day. On Memorial Day the flag should be displayed at half-staff until noon only, then raised to the top of the staff. By order of the President, the flag shall be flown at half-staff upon the death of principal figures of the United States Government and the Governor of a State, territory, or possession, as a mark of respect to their memory. In the event of the death of other officials or foreign dignitaries, the flag is to be displayed at half-staff according to Presidential instructions or orders, or in accordance with recognized customs or practices not inconsistent with law. In the event of the death of a present or former official of the government of any State, territory, or possession of the United States, the Governor of that State, territory, or possession may proclaim that the National flag shall be flown at half-staff. The flag shall be flown at half-staff 30 days from the death of the President or a former President; 10 days from the day of death of the Vice President, the Chief Justice or a retired Chief Justice of the United States, or the Speaker of the House of Representatives; from the day of death until interment of an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court, a Secretary of an executive or military department, a former Vice President, or the Governor of a State, territory, or possession; and on the day of death and the following day for a Member of Congress. The flag shall be flown at half-staff on Peace Officers Memorial Day, unless that day is also Armed Forces Day. As used in this subsection -
    (1) the term ''half-staff'' means the position of the flag when it is one-half the distance between the top and bottom of the staff;
    (2) the term ''executive or military department'' means any agency listed under sections 101 and 102 of title 5, United States Code; and
    (3) the term ''Member of Congress'' means a Senator, a Representative, a Delegate, or the Resident Commissioner from Puerto Rico.
    (n) When the flag is used to cover a casket, it should be so placed that the union is at the head and over the left shoulder. The flag should not be lowered into the grave or allowed to touch the ground.
    (o) When the flag is suspended across a corridor or lobby in a building with only one main entrance, it should be suspended vertically with the union of the flag to the observer's left upon entering. If the building has more than one main entrance, the flag should be suspended vertically near the center of the corridor or lobby with the union to the north, when entrances are to the east and west or to the east when entrances are to the north and south. If there are entrances in more than two directions, the union should be to the east.

    8. Respect for flag
    No disrespect should be shown to the flag of the United States of America; the flag should not be dipped to any person or thing. Regimental colors, State flags, and organization or institutional flags are to be dipped as a mark of honor.
    (a) The flag should never be displayed with the union down, except as a signal of dire distress in instances of extreme danger to life or property.
    (b) The flag should never touch anything beneath it, such as the ground, the floor, water, or merchandise.
    (c) The flag should never be carried flat or horizontally, but always aloft and free.
    (d) The flag should never be used as wearing apparel, bedding, or drapery. It should never be festooned, drawn back, nor up, in folds, but always allowed to fall free. Bunting of blue, white, and red, always arranged with the blue above, the white in the middle, and the red below, should be used for covering a speaker's desk, draping the front of the platform, and for decoration in general.
    (e) The flag should never be fastened, displayed, used, or stored in such a manner as to permit it to be easily torn, soiled, or damaged in any way.
    (f) The flag should never be used as a covering for a ceiling.
    (g) The flag should never have placed upon it, nor on any part of it, nor attached to it any mark, insignia, letter, word, figure, design, picture, or drawing of any nature.
    (h) The flag should never be used as a receptacle for receiving, holding, carrying, or delivering anything.
    (i) The flag should never be used for advertising purposes in any manner whatsoever. It should not be embroidered on such articles as cushions or handkerchiefs and the like, printed or otherwise impressed on paper napkins or boxes or anything that is designed for temporary use and discard. Advertising signs should not be fastened to a staff or halyard from which the flag is flown.
    (j) No part of the flag should ever be used as a costume or athletic uniform. However, a flag patch may be affixed to the uniform of military personnel, firemen, policemen, and members of patriotic organizations. The flag represents a living country and is itself considered a living thing. Therefore, the lapel flag pin being a replica, should be worn on the left lapel near the heart.
    (k) The flag, when it is in such condition that it is no longer a fitting emblem for display, should be destroyed in a dignified way, preferably by burning.

    9. Conduct during hoisting, lowering or passing of flag
    During the ceremony of hoisting or lowering the flag or when the flag is passing in a parade or in review, all present except those in uniform should face the flag and stand at attention with the right hand over the heart. Those present in uniform should render the military salute. When not in uniform, men should remove their headdress with their right hand and hold it at the left shoulder, the hand being over the heart. Aliens should stand at attention. The salute to the flag in a moving column should be rendered at the moment the flag passes.

    10. Modification of rules and customs by President
    Any rule or custom pertaining to the display of the flag of the United States of America, set forth herein, may be altered, modified, or repealed, or additional rules with respect thereto may be prescribed, by the Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces of the United States, whenever he deems it to be appropriate or desirable; and any such alteration or additional rule shall be set forth in a proclamation.
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    Member Array AirMech74's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PatrioticRick View Post
    Illegal immigrants mowing the lawns?
    My thoughts exactley!!

    I would not doubt it for one second.
    Better to be tried by 12, than carried by 6

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    Senior Member Array Free American's Avatar
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    Just deport them.
    They who give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety. Benjamin Franklin


    Previously known as "cjm5874"

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    Distinguished Member Array ArmyCop's Avatar
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    I'd like to know the result \ outcome of this story. I'm very sensitive to anything \ anyone that dishonors our Flag.
    For God, Family and Country!

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    That is almost hard to believe - hardly far removed from burning IMO.

    Total disrespect and desicration I have two all-weather flags and display them with immense pride - woe betide anyone damaging those!!!.
    Chris - P95
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    Ex Member Array azchevy's Avatar
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    No respect anymore in this country.

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    An update. Both from the Wyoming Tribune-Eagle:

    Mayor meets with Post 6 commander

    By Cameron Mathews




    cmathews@wyomingnews.com

    CHEYENNE - Mayor Jack Spiker requested a personal meeting Monday with various American Legion Post 6 members to learn if a city crew actually mowed down about 100 small American flags at Olivet Cemetery last week.

    But after sending in two "well-seasoned" Parks and Recreation Department employees to inspect the damage, he said he is convinced they weren't mowed over.

    "A mower would have shredded them," he said. "This doesn't mean a city employee didn't do something, but a mower didn't do it."

    After a meeting was called between American Legion Post 6 members and the community on Sunday to discuss what happened, Spiker was prompted to call his own meeting with Post Commander Ross Smith to get the facts.

    "(The Legion) accused us of something we know nothing about," Spiker said. "I understand their anger, but we're angry too."

    Approximately 100 small American flags posted beside the gravesites of war veterans were apparently cut down sometime last week.

    Spiker and city Parks and Recreation Department Director Rick Parish didn't know what had happened or that a meeting had even been held until early Monday morning.

    "It puzzles me why we haven't received any communication about this until (Monday) morning," Spiker said. "I would have loved to attend that meeting, because it would have been so much easier to get to the bottom of this."

    Community volunteer David Heath said he noticed the ruined flags sometime last Tuesday or Wednesday, but those facts don't match up with city mowing records, Parish said.

    Because of last Tuesday's rainfall, no mowing at the cemetery took place, he said. If the incident happened the following day, it would be a whole different story.

    "Right now, the story is one person said this person heard that this person said this," Spiker said. "We are trying to get down to the facts."

    Whether it was a city employee or an act of vandalism is still uncertain. But whoever is guilty will be dealt with very harshly, he said.

    Parish said five mowers and two-man crews using portable trimmers were working in shifts Wednesday, but nothing was ever reported to his office, the mayor's office or to the cemetery's secretary, who is responsible for tracking filed complaints.

    "I was obviously surprised when I first heard about the whole thing," Parish said. "A couple (crew members) did say they accidentally hit two of them, but not to the amount we observed (Monday)."

    Spiker said that because of the number of rows that make up the cemetery grounds and how many mowers were going at once, "someone would have seen or said something."

    That's why he scheduled an appointment with Smith to come down and see the flags that had been harmed.

    "There were too many eyes," he said. "So far, the facts are pointing in different directions, and the days don't line up with our records. Our staff is upset as much as the public is."

    During Monday's meeting, Spiker and Parish were shown 100 damaged flags.

    Approximately 90 of them appeared to have been knocked over and their wooden sticks broken in half. The rest were in pretty good shape, Spiker said.

    Parish, Spiker and Smith all toured the cemetery Monday afternoon and found no additional damage.

    Smith initially said mower tracks were spotted on a flag, but Spiker believes that a mower probably would have destroyed it, while a portable trimmer might have partially damaged it.

    Another meeting with American Legion Post 6 members and cemetery employees has been scheduled by Spiker for sometime today in an effort to find out what happened and who is responsible.

    "If we can identify some sort of timeline when this occurred, we can identify who was involved," Spiker said. "In my mind, our people are innocent, but we will do what we have to to prove who is responsible."

    Mayor explains cemetery flag flap
    Spiker says any damage was unintentional

    By Cameron Mathews




    cmathews@wyomingnews.com

    CHEYENNE - Mayor Jack Spiker will send a letter to American Legion Post 6 today detailing the city's findings related to its investigation of last week's destruction of about 100 small American flags at Olivet Cemetery.

    In his letter, Spiker said he plans to tell the Legion post members that malicious intent wasn't involved with any of the damaged flags.

    "We hope to replace the flags, learn from this and figure out what new procedures need to be made," said Rick Parish, director of the city's Parks and Recreation Department. "We will work with the Legion to do the best we can and admit we are partially responsible for this."

    Parish said he will ask the Legion if his department can replace the number of flags that were reportedly destroyed.

    Several days after Legion post members asserted that the flags appeared to have been ripped apart by a city crew's lawnmower, Spiker continues to say he doesn't think that was the case.

    He said there just isn't any evidence to conclude that someone intentionally harmed the flags.

    "I don't think the Legion inflated its reported number (of destroyed flags)," Spiker said. "It's just a combination of some innocent mistakes and maybe some vandalism."

    After a lengthy set of interviews with various cemetery employees that last two days, Spiker said, he has concluded that nobody mowed over the flags.

    Crew members have admitted to running over two or three by accident, which isn't uncommon because of the size of the machines they operate.

    Rob Allen, a mower with the city's parks department, said it was almost outrageous for him to hear that nearly 100 flags were harmed by a grounds crew member.

    "We have a really good crew here," he said. "We try as hard as we can, and from what I saw (of the flags), they weren't run over by a mower."

    Rather, many of Allen's co-workers agree the damage was likely caused by weather conditions.

    "These things are basically held down by little staples," said John Burton, who also works as a mower. "Bad weather will pull them out of the ground."

    City Councilwoman Judy Case said it doesn't matter what caused the damage; it happened.

    All that needs to happen now to resolve the situation is for Spiker and other city officials step up and take some responsibility, she said.

    "Who did this is irrelevant," Case said. "It happened. Instead of arguing about who did it, it's already done. Stop shooting the blame."

    Spencer Townsend, also a grounds crew member, said he is looking everywhere all the time when operating a mower.

    If he had seen 100 ruined and chopped-up flags, a report would have been filed.

    "I just didn't see anything like that," Townsend said. "I would have noticed it. All we're doing is getting out there to make it look nice."
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    Senior Member Array purple88yj's Avatar
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    I wouldn't care if they were American born and bred, that kind of action is grounds for someone getting a mud hole stomped into them and then walked dry.

    If there is enough left of them after that, ship them to some other country. Iraq sounds like a good start.

    I stand and cover my heart whenever I hear Colors, the Pledge, or the anthem being played on TV. I have even made calls to businesses to have them correct their displays before.
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    My money is on lazy and uncaring municipal workers.

    [edit]
    Well an update was posted as I read about proper flag etiquette, then commented! Man it can move fast around here! :-)

    While the grounds crew may not have damaged them all, even damage to one shows they didn't work carefully around them or move them out of the work area. They may not be flags, but our county ground crew chews up my schools soccer nets all the time because they will not get their lazy behinds off the tractor to move the portion of the net contacting the ground.
    Last edited by symbiont7; June 7th, 2007 at 12:55 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by symbiont7 View Post
    My money is on lazy and uncaring municipal workers.
    I have to go with you here... sound like CYA from the groundskeepers.
    You have to make the shot when fire is smoking, people are screaming, dogs are barking, kids are crying and sirens are coming.
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  15. #15
    Senior Member Array Shadowsbane's Avatar
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    I have used those industrial size mowers, really would be surprised at what does not get all shredded in them. But I guess we will not know for sure. My money is with the lazy workers though.
    Now, we must all fear evil men. But there is another kind of evil which we must fear most, and that is the indifference of good men.

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