‘Tool of oppression’: Sartell to remove ‘thin blue line’ decals from police cars

A petition claimed the "thin blue line" symbol was co-opted by groups like "Blue Lives Matter" to oppose so-called racial justice.

Sartell Police Department/Facebook

A pseudo activist was gloating Thursday night in central Minnesota.

“I just received confirmation that the Sartell Police Department will be removing the ‘Thin Blue Line’ decals AND the flag inside the police department!! Woohoo! This is a great day folks!” Hannah Kosloski, who’s been demanding the removal of the decals from Sartell Police Department vehicles for months, posted on Facebook Thursday.

This was confirmed in a letter Kosloski publicized from an attorney for the city.

“After reviewing your request with the Police Department and other City staff, we write this letter to inform you that the City is removing the Thin Blue Line flag decals on the police squad cars and the Thin Blue Line flag from the Sartell Public Safety facility,” a city attorney wrote Thursday to the ACLU, whom Kosloski apparently recruited to help threaten the small town north of St. Cloud over the innocuous stickers.

Take Action Minnesota, a radical left-wing group in the Twin Cities, was involved in the effort as well, according to Kosloski.

Kosloski then lashed out at Sartell’s mayor, city council, and police chiefs, because they didn’t immediately accede to her demands.

“You do not to to [sic] credit. You were apart [sic] of this. You instead actively choose [sic] to prioritize yourself over your community,” she wrote on Facebook. She then closed by threatening, “We watched you. We are continuing to watch you.”

In her original petition, Kosloski claimed the flag was co-opted by groups like “Blue Lives Matter” to oppose so-called racial justice.

“The thin blue line flag directly isolates our community members of color and makes a mockery of the Black Lives Matter movement,” Kosloski, who is white, claimed in her original petition, which received 601 signatures.

A counter-petition to keep the pro-police decals received 2,095 signatures.

“The flag no longer just means solidarity and sacrifice. It is now used as a tool of oppression and hatred by pro-policing groups like ‘Blue Lives Matter’ in response to calls of racial injustice, police brutality, and systemic racism towards Black people in our communities,” Kosloski continued. “We all need to be taking direct action to learn, re-learn, and assess our own racial bias in order to address national systemic issues that exist in our own backyards. This is just the tip of the iceberg.”

The “thin blue line” symbol is used on the Minnesota Law Enforcement Memorial on the State Capitol grounds, as well as on Minnesota Law Enforcement Memorial Association license plates.

Originating in the 1950s, the “thin blue line” term refers to the police as a barrier or line keeping communities they protect from descending into the chaos Americans have recently seen in major cities.


A.J. Kaufman
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A.J. Kaufman is an Alpha News columnist. His work has appeared in the Baltimore Sun, Florida Sun-Sentinel, Indianapolis Star, Israel National News, Orange County Register, St. Cloud Times, Star-Tribune, and across AIM Media Midwest and the Internet. Kaufman previously worked as a school teacher and military historian.