San Francisco Removes Historic ‘Appeal To Heaven’ Flag Outside Of City Hall
A group of women stop to pray with National Guardsmen by the State Capitol in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, in January 2021, displaying the "Appeal to Heaven" flag.
Charles Fox / The Philadelphia Inquirer / Tribune News Service via Getty Images

The City of San Francisco removed a historic “Appeal To Heaven” flag that flew outside of city hall amidst a left-wing smear campaign against the flag and a Supreme Court justice.

The New York Times claimed that the flag was linked to the January 6, 2021, Capitol riot, and a left-wing pressure campaign has emerged to try to force Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito to recuse himself from cases surrounding the 2020 presidential election because the flag had previously been flown at Alito’s beach home.

“This flag was originally used during the American Revolutionary War, flown by George Washington’s cruisers, and is associated with the early quest for American independence,” claimed San Francisco Recreation and Parks communications manager Daniel Montes. “It’s since been adopted by a different group-one that doesn’t represent the city’s values, so we made the decision to swap it with the American flag.”

The flag dates back to the American Revolution when George Washington gave six ships the flags as they operated under his command intercepting British ships, according to a report from ABC 7 San Francisco, which added that the flag was the official maritime flag of Massachusetts from 1776 to 1971.

Alito responded to the pressure campaign by noting that it was his wife’s decision to fly the flag and that she has protected First Amendment rights just like every other American.

“I recall that my wife did fly that flag for some period of time, but I do not remember how long it flew,” he said in part of his recusal. “And what is most relevant here, I had no involvement in the decision to fly that flag. My wife is fond of flying flags. I am not. My wife was solely responsible for having flagpoles put up at our residence and our vacation home and has flown a wide variety of flags over the years. In addition to the American flag, she has flown other patriotic flags (including a favorite flag thanking veterans), college flags, flags supporting sports teams, state and local flags, flags of nations from which the ancestors of family members came, flags of places we have visited, seasonal flags, and religious flags.”


He said that he was not familiar with the “Appeal to Heaven” flag when his wife flew it and that she had no idea it was linked to any events of January 6 when she decided to fly it.

“As I said in reference to the other flag event, my wife is an independently minded private citizen. She makes her own decisions, and I honor her right to do so. Our vacation home was purchased with money she inherited from her parents and is titled in her name. It is a place, away from Washington, where she should be able to relax,” he concluded. “A reasonable person who is not motivated by political or ideological considerations or a desire to affect the outcome of Supreme Court cases would conclude that this event does not meet the applicable standard for recusal. I am therefore duty-bound to reject your recusal request.”

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