By Brian Crowley, Palm Beach Post Staff Writer
lends support in flag flap
Article Courtesy of Palm
Saturday, June 15, 2002
JUPITER -- Former Marine George Andres
got air support Friday from Gov. Jeb Bush, who flew in to give Andres $100
toward his legal fight and help him raise a new American flag on the white
flag pole he has been ordered to take down.
Outside of the Indian Creek Phase IIIB
Homeowners Association, the ongoing battle over Andres' 12 foot flag pole
may seem a little silly, but for Bush, in the middle of a reelection campaign,
it was a photo opportunity not to be missed.
Wearing a green tie adorned with American
flags and bombs bursting in air, Bush handed Andres a flag that had flown
over the state Capitol. Then the two marched over to the flagpole and hoisted
the flag the short distance up the pole.
"This is the death of common sense," Bush
told a swarm of reporters and photographers. Television stations did live
reports in front of Andres' home while a score of supporters munched on
American flag cake, deviled eggs and tiny chicken-salad sandwiches.
It is a classic homeowners dispute. Andres
wants to fly his flag from a pole planted in the left front corner of his
yard. The association insists that flags must be flown from a pole attached
to the wall.
Andres will have none of it.
"The U.S. Supreme Court has said that I
can fly my flag," he said.
State courts have disagreed. They say he
is willfully violating the rules of the homeowner association. His defiance
has cost him $30,000. The association says it has spent $21,000 in legal
fees and court costs fighting Andres and they want him to pay it.
No one is budging.
After hearing about the flag fight, Bush
signed legislation in April that says homeowners can fly the flag in a
"respectful way" regardless of association rules. But the court ordered
Andres to take down his flag nearly two years ago and the association argues
that Andres must pay for his defiance prior to the new law.
In June 2001, the court said Andres must
pay $100 for every day the pole stays up.
"You still paying those fines?" Bush asked.
"I sure am," said Andres.
"Well here's one day," said Bush handing
him a check for $100.
Andres, wearing a snug "America the Beautiful"
T-shirt, was thrilled. "I'm not going to cash this check," he said when
Bush was out of earshot. "I'm going to frame it with the letter I received
Minutes later, Andres spotted Steven Selz
on his lawn and ordered the attorney for the homeowners association to
"get off my property."
"We're a country of laws and rules and
a court has ordered him to take that pole down," said Selz. "I'm sure the
governor's intention is not to encourage people to defy the courts."
Selz pointed to other flags flying from
nearby homes in compliance with association rules and said: "Why should
Mr. Andres be the only one allowed to ignore the rules of the association?
He was on the association board. He was part of the architectural committee.
He knew exactly what the rules are."
Andres, who has pictures of Bush, President
George W. Bush and former President George H.W. Bush on the wall in his
small living room, said he is more determined than ever to continue his
"How many times have you seen the governor
come to somebody's house to do something like this?" said the retired electrical
worker, who served in the Marine Corps from 1956-62.
Just before getting into his car to leave,
Bush pulled off his American Flag tie and gave it to Andres, who draped
it around his neck, showing it to everyone.
As Selz started walking down the street
to his car, Andres yelled, "What goes around comes around, Selz."