Tennessee Mayor Criticized for Lowering Town’s Flag to Half-Staff on Inauguration Day

half-staff flag
Town of Bruceton

A Tennessee mayor drew criticism for a Facebook message and a picture of the town’s American flag at half-staff on Inauguration Day.

“While many critics accused him of trying to incite anger with the post, the mayor insisted that his post had nothing to do with Biden’s inauguration,” the Blaze reported Thursday.

In his Facebook message, Robert T. Keeton III, mayor of Bruceton, wrote, “The Town of Bruceton grieves for our Republic and our loss of freedoms. We mourn the victims of the Chinese plague and those that have suffered its depredations.”

“We pray that God delivers and restores us and that we do not fall to the clutches of communism,” he continued:

The Town of Bruceton grieves for our Republic and our loss of freedoms. We mourn the victims of the Chinese plague and…

Posted by Town of Bruceton on Wednesday, January 20, 2021

Many Facebook users criticized the mayor’s post, one person writing, “I am ashamed for our community and of your actions (since you most certainly will not be).”

“As a leader, you are looked to for guidance, trusted, and this is how you act? The United States flag at half mast is not to be used for your personal agenda or opinion. I will be praying for you. Such an embarrassment,” the user said.

However, others praised the mayor for speaking out.

“I respect Bob more today than I ever have,” one individual said.

“Thank you MR MAYOR! PLEASE, CONTINUE TO STAND YOUR GROUND!” another commented.

Keeton later clarified his message and told the Jackson Sun it was a reaction to the coronavirus pandemic and a recent death in the area.

“It was just a commentary and prayer for our country,” he said.

“I’m an attorney, and I’m seeing our constitutional rights being trampled on virtually every day, and I’m concerned for our republic, even though I’ve lost people that I know to this Chinese virus,” the mayor explained.

Keeton also said he is concerned about social media platforms not allowing certain communication on their sites.

“That’s not right, and the government isn’t doing anything about it,” he noted. “And I was raised that everyone had the right to say what they wanted to, and if someone disagreed with you, then that’s the way it is.”

Over the past week, social media network MeWe added 2.5 million members as more Americans grow wary of platforms such as Facebook and Twitter, according to Breitbart News.

As to his post, Keeton said, “If anyone thinks this was because of the inauguration happening today or anything else, it’s not.”

“We had a man in his mid-60s who called up to City Hall from the nursing home that died yesterday from the virus. He was in the nursing home alone and he died alone, and my post was a reaction to that and everything that’s happened because of it,” the mayor concluded.


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