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SGT Unit Supply Specialist
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PO1 William "Chip" Nagel
..."Three flagpoles stand in front of city hall, two for the flags of the United States and the state of Massachusetts. On the third, Boston's city flag is normally raised, but the city makes the spot available for private organizations that conduct commemorations in the plaza in front of the building to celebrate the community's diversity.

The case involved a request from Harold Shurtleff, founder of Camp Constitution, which says part of its mission "is to enhance understanding of the country's Judeo-Christian heritage." When he sought permission to fly what he described as "a Christian flag" — a cross in a blue square on a white field — the city turned him down. So he sued.

His lawyer, Mathew Staver, told the court that the city's message was, "All applicants are welcome, except religious viewpoints." He said that amounted to censorship, because the flagpole was a kind of public forum.

Some of the justices questioned that position. "Go look at the city plaza, flags right in front of city hall. Of course, you think it has something to do with the city," said Stephen Breyer, who was a federal appeals court judge in Boston.

"Why would you think this is anything other than the government flying the flag?" asked Elena Kagan, the former dean of Harvard Law School, located across the Charles River in Cambridge.

She said a city must be able to set limits on what it displays on its flagpoles.

"Does the city have to say yes to a Swastika?" she asked.

Staver said the city can set limits but cannot discriminate against viewpoints in what he said was a public forum. "If the city allows a Black Lives Matter flag, then it will probably have to allow a Proud Boys flag. That's just what the First Amendment requires."
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SP5 Dennis Loberger
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Both Rhoades and Meggs felt they were a part of an insurrection.
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