An Arizona man is fighting his homeowners’ association over flying a “Don’t Tread On Me Flag.” While this may appear to be a political situation, it is a broader issue: there have been numerous battles over the years between residents and homeowners’ associations over things like flying flags.
On one hand, homeowners’ associations are trying to maintain a certain image in the neighborhood. On the other hand, their rules are extensive and can often appear heavy-handed. However, this Arizona man and many others have a few options that would limit situations like these: don’t move into neighborhoods with such associations (and they are quite common) and know what the restrictions are before purchasing or become involved with the local association and change the rules. As in this situation, two American desires are in conflict: the desire to maintain some local control (and perhaps boost property values) and the desire to be individuals who can express themselves.
Overall, homeowners’ associations are common today in America. According to the Community Associations Institute, there are over 305,000 “association-governed communities” with over 60 million residents.