Have You Seen Blue Lines On Your Street?
The "thin blue line" has become a symbol of support for police officers all over the country. It appears on clothing, bumper stickers, flags, and now some roads in New Jersey.
The trend is growing in Bergen County and other North Jersey communities, but townships all around the state are painting the line to show support for police.
Red lines have been painted in some towns to honor firefighters as well. Glen Rock has painted white lines for their EMTs and paramedics, while Dumont honored them with a green line.
Rodney J. Sawyer, police chief of Mantua Township in Gloucester County, said
[the line] stands in support of a profession that in recent months has come under fire ... It represents the solidarity displayed within the profession when a Law Enforcement Officer makes the ultimate sacrifice... It is the thin blue line in the midst of tragedy that rushes in as others rush out."
The lines have not been without controversy - when the idea was proposed in Closter, Councilman Brian Stabile said the country is being polarized by the idea that a person can either support Black Lives Matter or Blue Lives Matter, and the township would "not choose a side right now ... We're a town that's less than 5 percent black and there is a major national race issue in this country. The prism of the nation right now says that if you put a blue line there, you are a racist."
However, Mayor Bill Laforet of Mahwah countered that, saying "Our steadfast support of our police department rises above politics. You can have an opinion either way, but we support them."
You can find locally-focused, charitable, community-oriented events that our local law enforcement organizations are hosting by checking out our Huddle For Heroes.