Two weeks ago, one area command office of the California Highway Patrol issued a new directive stating that no “Thin Blue Line” insignias, devices or other paraphernalia would be allowed in department spaces or anywhere the public might see it. This included material hung in offices or displayed on uniforms or vehicles, including personal property. The memo they sent out went so far as to specify that nobody could use the slogan in the signature block of their emails. Considering the meaning of the “thin blue line” to law enforcement officers, that seemed like a fairly radical step to take, wouldn’t you say?
But as the Daily Wire reports, once they were contacted by the media, a retraction was issued… sort of. It was all a misunderstanding, you see. Somebody had misinterpreted an existing policy prohibiting the promotion of “social causes” on department property.
Fran Clader, CHP’s Director of Communications in Sacramento, stated, “The item … was included as part of a shift briefing for one area command within Border Division and has since been rescinded since it was a misinterpretation of department policy … [It] was intended as a generic reminder to personnel to refrain from promoting any social cause on state property or equipment visible to the public. The advisement does not pertain to personally owned items. “
A CHP representative in the field told Press California that the memo was issued by the commissioner’s office in CHP headquarters, adding, “CHP wants to stay neutral and not appear to endorse any particular group.”