When a Jersey Shore man had the Donald Trump flags he flew above his home repeatedly stolen by anti-Trump vandals, he figured that the police would be coming to his house to take a report about the thefts.
Instead, they were coming to ticket him — for expressing his personal opinions.
According to NJ.com, Joseph Hornick of West Long Branch, New Jersey, was ticketed March 25 under a law that prevents yard signs within 30 days of an election, even though the flags he was flying don’t fit under the auspices of the ordinance.
In case you lacked any doubt that the ticketing was politically motivated, the original complaint was pressed by Brian Hegarty, a former Democrat councilman who lived in the borough.
“Here I am looking for the cops to capture these people and instead, here they come and give me a ticket for my freedom of expression,” Hornick told reporters on Thursday.
Hornick is a retired firefighter who served the neighboring borough of Long Branch during his career, said that what he was doing was the same as someone flying a flag of a sports team.
“I’m not a football fan. I’m not a sports fan. One thing I have become is a Donald Trump fan,” Hornick said. “I feel my constitutional right has been violated. I have the right to express myself.”
And that’s what the Jersey Shore resident plans to do. After he received his ticket, he called the police department to let them know he was going to keep the flags flying, even with a court date on April 20.
“I don’t care if I have to buy 1,000 Trump flags. I will keep putting them up,” he said. “I don’t care if I have to hire a Marine to keep guard, I will keep putting them up.”
“I have back-up flags. If I have to buy a warehouse of Donald Trump flags, I will,” he promised. “Because I will not give up the battle.”
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