Photo of truck dragging American flag stirs questions about flag etiquette

Photo sent in by viewer Monday morning

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. - A photo sent by a 23ABC viewer Monday morning showed a janitorial staffing truck dragging an American flag.

The photo which was of an ABM truck had angered the viewer, who originally thought the employee was being disrespectful towards the flag.

After making calls to ABM, 23ABC  found out what appeared to be an American flag was actually a truck's tailgate strap.

The janitorial staffing company explained that the strap was only put in a few weeks ago after someone had stolen the original one.

Dick Taylor of the Kern County Veteran Service Department said that although the tailgate strap should be taken off, it does not violate the U.S. Flag Code of Conduct.

"Articles of clothing, decals on vehicles, in this case, a piece of a tailgate fall outside those (U.S. Flag Code of Conduct) parameters," Taylor said.

A veteran himself, Clark said he didn't feel offended when he saw the photo.

"The intent was probably good for the owner, unfortunately, some people took offense to that. I suspect that they wanted nothing but good to come out of it," Clark said.

In statement to 23ABC from ABM, the company apologized for the incident.

“We are as shocked as anyone to see this image.  While we recognize that the employee’s intent may have been a good one and this is a standard tailgate purchased at a major auto supplier, the use of the flag in this way is not at all reflective of our company and not consistent with our policies or practices.  We are replacing the item with appropriate equipment immediately and will act to prevent this from ever happening again.”






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