Iowa man defends decision to display swastika sign in yard across from elementary school

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(CNN) -

An Iowa man stands by his decision to post a large Nazi sign in his front yard, located across the street from an elementary school in Des Moines.

William Stark says the sign is "pallet art."

Along with the swastika sign, there are numerous Confederate flags, a "Back the Blue" flag supporting police officers and an American flag with just 11 stripes and 32 stars.

A posting about the swastika sign on Facebook has generated hundreds of comments, mostly negative.

(MORE: Vandalism Discovered at Home of Man Displaying Nazi Sign Near School)

Stark says it's not a racist sign, calling it "historic." He calls it a "World War II flag" and says anyone offended by it doesn't understand history.

"My grandfather is still alive. I think he is 103, and that's why I made this very last one. Plus, a couple of other people said I wouldn't do it and put it in my yard. I'm sorry, I'm a free American, I'll do whatever I want," Stark said.

An official with Morris Elementary School says they've had issues with Stark in the past. They are working with Des Moines police to serve him with a criminal trespass advisory.

They say police will be called if Stark or his girlfriend step foot on school property.