Norfolk man who flew flag with swastika: “I wanted to shock, not offend”

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Norfolk, Va. - A Norfolk man is getting a lot of backlash after flying a flag with a swastika on it, but Monday he defended his reason for putting it up.

"I don't think Obama's going to put people in ovens, but we are certainly are in a death spiral which I don't think we're going to recover," he said, while speaking on the radio on WNIS Monday morning.

NewsChannel 3 first told you about what happened on Friday.

Since then, there's been a big response from people, and not just online.

Dr. Wheeler says people have driven up and down his street, taking pictures and pointing out his house.  A few cars have passed by up to eight times.

Saturday morning he says he found one of his windows broken.

NewsChannel 3 spoke with him extensively Monday about the reaction from people and if he stands by his actions.  He would not go on camera, but expressed views similar to the ones he made on the radio.

"I wanted to shock.  I did not want to offend.  I wanted to shock... Most people in my neighborhood I thought were sophisticated and intelligent enough not to be offended but to understand why it was being flown.  It was being flown one minute after the announcement," he said on WNIS.

As NewsChannel 3 reported Friday, Dr. Wheeler says he put up the flag in response to President Obama's actions on immigration.

He says he specifically chose the flag he displayed, a German military battle flag instead of the Nazi party flag, because he thought that one was too offensive.

He did want to show a swastika, though, to express what he sees as a similarity between Hitler and Obama.

"How do I equate Obama with Hitler?" he said on WNIS, "Well number one, look at the millions of people, innocents that have been murdered during the Obama administration and sanctioned during the Obama administration."  His comment is referring to some types of abortion.

Dr. Wheeler says he purchased the flag several weeks ago knowing an announcement about immigration was coming and wanted to be ready.

He says he has learned a lot from all that happened, saying he did not realize how offensive it would be to people and for that he is sorry.  He says he does not plan to fly it again.

14 comments

  • general burkhalter

    a man of german heritage should be free to fly symbols of his country’s history without fear of hate-crimes being committed against him

    • Bootsnchaps

      This was more like an intentional publicity stunt to get himself a mention on Sean Hannity rather than a display of heritage. The justification and excuse may have been to “shock” but only the most naive would think the display wouldn’t provoke folks.

      • david w.

        Completely disagree Boots – the message was clear to me. It has nothing to do with anything most here have mentioned. And I do concur with General. The fact is Dr. Wheeler’s message exceeded most everyone’s intellect. It was a metaphor. And the public failed to get it. Instead attacked the man personally. This is exactly why society will never get an upper hand on the wealthy, bought politicians and crooks. Nor will they prevail in true collectivism and rationale to make the changes necessary to stop the lopsided goings on in this country all which is working against the masses from top down. They fail to see the trees through the forest and its sad.

    • Confused

      This isn’t Germany and would be hypocritical for him if he is against immigration to be able to say hey I’m German and I live in America but you can’t because you’re Mexican? I’m sure somewhere down the line his family immigrated here.

  • Albert Fritts

    So this man is smart enough to have a doctorate but dumb enough to think we believe he doesn’t know nazi flags are offensive? Is there a such thing as educationally bipolar? If so, then a picture of him should be above the definition. Otherwise, he’s just a racist idiot. Who keeps a nazi flag at home anyway?

    • david w.

      If you understood more completely and intellectually the accuracy and truths of historical events which occurred during that time, versus what you have been learned and inaccurately told concerning history and even things pertaining to Nazi Germany and the flag, including the flagrant lies concerning the holocaust you would have never made that type of post to begin with. People do not even remotely comprehend or fathom what happened in Germany during that time. Most everyone has been sold down the river without a paddle and base their truths on personal feelings, and fraudulent twisted accounts of history.

    • david w.

      You are so focused on the Nazi stuff you missed Dr. Wheeler’s point all together. Hence why he said, I thought people would be more sophisticated and intelligent to understand why he put it up in the first place. right after the decision in Ferguson. But as usual people are just that dumb and do not get it.

  • david w.

    Dr Wheeler, you, as I have continually made the mistake of placing more sophistication and intelligence in the general population then they have the ability to exhibit. I get your message, loud and clear, but you would have been better served, and still at an even higher level of intellect, and clear message, placing a flag of the Republic of Congo on your tree. I would have understood that message too.. It would take far too much text to explain to the masses the point of it all. They will never get it. sad.

  • david w.

    If it were me, I would have flown the flag of the Republic of Congo after the decision in Ferguson – sending a double metaphor to which barely no one would have gotten. Least it would not have drawn the unwarranted negativity this did. People are just not capable of getting something that requires the ability to think deeply.

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