New Jersey man flies Muslim flag adopted by ISIS
A New Jersey man is taking a lot of heat Thursday night for flying a flag that has come to represent ISIS. He says it’s a Muslim flag, but in the interest of peace in his neighborhood, he replaced the flag with an alternative San Diegans can support.
It all started with a tweet showing Mark Dunaway’s Muslim flag outside his Garwood apartment. That flag has now been adopted by ISIS.
“The Twitter thing was the first time I ever heard any beef about it. And that caught me off guard,” stated flag owner Dunaway.
But in a neighborhood where more homes fly the red, white and blue, the black and white flag has neighbors taking sides.
“I think it’s not right at this time to be flying that type of flag, especially with what’s going on, you know. That’s how I feel,” said neighbor James McHugh.
“The comments people are making are more frightening than the flag he put up,” said neighbor Diane Figueiredo. “People are saying they should burn the flag down and that’s more frightening.”
Dunaway has been flying the flag since he moved onto Winslow Place ten years ago – long before it became a symbol for ISIS.
“There is only one God. That is Allah. And the Prophet Muhammed is his messenger. That’s basically what this says,” defended Dunaway.
“To show something like that, while they’re showing something like that I don’t really agree with,” said another neighbor Michael Hildebrand.
Police talked to Dunaway, telling him he was free to fly the flag, but making sure he is aware of the controversy swirling around his house. Dunaway says he doesn’t want to make his neighbors feel uncomfortable.
“If people are that offended by it, it’s obviously something, it’s censorship. But I might not have to fly it for a while. Maybe one day, I’ll be able to fly it again, no problem.”
Dunaway says he’s a football-loving American, so he replaces his banner with – of all things – an American flag, in the colors of the San Diego Chargers. Just as a precaution, police say they have increased patrols in Dunaway’s neighborhood.