Tallahassee Woman Asked to Remove American Flag

"I cried when I had to come out here and take it down. Who wouldn't?"

Eva Overstreet isn't hiding her emotions. When the 83-year-old hung up her American flag on her front porch about a month ago, she didn't think it would be a problem, at least not until Tuesday afternoon.

"I told the little girl this is outrageous."

She's talking about the notice she received from her landlord, the Tallahassee Housing Authority, asking her "to remove the structure."

The request devastated her.

"It's my freedom, you take that away from me, my flowers, my pets. I ain't got no reason to live at all."

Overstreet may feel it's outrageous, but her landlord says they're right in asking her to take it down. The problem is in her lease and the violation is the way Overstreet was displaying her flag.

Claudette Cromartie, Executive Director of the Tallahassee Housing Authority, said,
"Under the resident obligations, she was cited for basically making alterations to her unit and obstructing the view of her unit from the street."

Cromartie says that could also pose a security problem because her porch could not be seen.

The Housing Authority agrees it's Overstreet's civil liberty right to fly her American flag, adding, "We don't have a problem with her flying the flag."

But it says if she wants to display it, she's going to have to follow the rules. Overstreet says the flag will go back up, this time as allowed by her lease, but she says that doesn't mean she's not angry about the situation.

"It broke my heart to think someone would make me take a flag down."