A mural was created by a Salem businessman to honor the American flag as well as the Marines who raised the flag at Iwo Jima. It was praised by most as a lovely memorial and nice use of an otherwise unremarkable wall. Local artist was hired by the owner to create this tasteful display of patriotism.
Salem City Council ordered him to remove the sign or face a fine of up to $200 per hour. Mario De Leon, an artist, raised the alarm via a Facebook post. Salem City Council recently went through a major overhaul, with many long-serving conservative members retiring. It appears that this is the end result.
Many commenters on social media pointed out that the mural is located on the backside of the building on private property, away from the entrance of the business. Therefore, the commercial sign code should not be relevant. A friend of the business owner created a petition that he will send to Salem City Council.
The Salem City Council will likely face a crisis in public relations when it returns from its holiday break.