Abdul Hakim Shabazz is talking about it this morning on his WXNT radio program, and a couple of AI readers have sent e-mails expressing their concern about it. During the Pledge of Allegiance at last night's city-county council meeting, City-County Council President Monroe Gray, not known for his sense of decorum, remained seated during the Pledge of Allegiance. As one AI reader expressed it:
I was at the CCC meeting, and was flabbergasted as President Monroe Gray sat on his BUTT during the Pledge of Allegiance.
Several times tonight Veterans were honored or mentioned and being a veteran himself, Gray knows protocol.
During boot camp the protocol is drummed into your head, then you practice it daily. You NEVER forget it.
Gray is not only a Veteran, he also attended Fire Fighters School. I’m sure the same protocol is expressed there.
Any grade school kid knows to stand when the Pledge of Allegiance is spoken. This man is a disgrace. He needs to make a public apology.
The press was all over the room... where’s the outcry?
An update on the Star's website this afternoon indicates Gray has issued an apology about the Pledge of Allegiance flap after the issue was first raised on local blogs, calling it an "innocent mistake.: The report reads:
Indianapolis City-County Council President Monroe Gray said his failure to stand during the recitation of the Pledge of Allegiance at last night's council meeting was an "honest mistake."
Gray, a veteran of the U.S. Army 82nd Airborne Division, said he meant no disrespect toward the flag or country and didn't realize his mistake until someone confronted him about it after the meeting.
"I just got caught up in the moment, preparing for the meeting," Gray said. "I had sat down thinking we were going on to the next thing on the agenda (after the prayer)."
Commentators on several local blogs immediately ripped Gray for failing to follow a basic expectation of respect for the flag. Gray said some critics attend the meetings just to find a reason to attack him. He said he apologized to the man who confronted him and said it would not happen again. "I wasn't even conscious of it," Gray said. "It was an innocent mistake."