EVANSVILLE, Ind (WEHT) The Evansville Flag Project has announced community voting, which was scheduled to last until the end of June, has ended effective immediately. Project officials say they have learned the flag designs are not supported by the City of Evansville and have been asked to pause the process until further notice.
The mayor’s office says the feedback they have received has been overwhelming negative. When they met with the flag committee last week, we’re told they all agreed to continue with the process. The mayor’s office says they were surprised to learn that the committee decided to end voting.
“It was not a city project, but as mayor I certainly endorsed the idea of developing a flag for the city. Ultimately, it would have gone to the city council for approval and based on feedback from various leaders in the community, I didn’t think the next flag of the city was in the group that they have submitted,” explained Evansville Mayor Lloyd Winnecke. “Based on the overwhelmingly negative and sometimes hateful personal attacks on social media. I said, ‘You know what. I think the best thing to do is let the voting play out that ballots of the month as they had planned.’ And then if that same negative trend continues, then I think the right course of action is to recognize the community is saying, ‘hey our next flag may not be among this group’. At that point you can pause and reset. Kind of let the dust settle. “
The mayor’s office was not the only place receiving negative comments about the flag. “Travesty in the making” “Terrible horrible rotten” and “too Mid-Eastern” and “too un-American” are some of the comments left on the flag project’s Facebook page.
Some community members don’t understand how these flags could stir up so much hate.
“I like them. Especially with the Four Freedoms [Monument] because we are known for that and a lot of people pass by Riverside to see Four Freedoms,” said Belinda Jackson.
Voting started last week, and more than 3,300 Evansville residents had already cast their vote. The common themes, shapes, and colors of the designs were chosen by the project’s selection committee who worked along side the design committee. The color palette in each option includes gold and dark blue to honor the seal of the city and state of Indiana.