Flag burning should be unconstitutional!

Discussion in 'Archive: The Senate Floor' started by Coolguy4522, Jul 7, 2002.

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  1. Coolguy4522 Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Dec 21, 2000
    star 4
    Info Here

    Americans overwhelmingly want this to be passed, so why are the politicians being so slow on this? It isn't like this is just a whim of the people either. After 9/11, we should have more respect for our flag.

  2. Gonzonaut Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Apr 28, 2000
    star 3
    "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances."
  3. RoboNerd Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Nov 7, 2001
    star 2
    Coolguy,

    While I respect your patriotism, part of the freedoms which we enjoy include the right to protest the actions of our government. In fact, it is a most important fundamental right.

    Even if you do not agree with the method of the protest, the right must be protected. Otherwise, that flag stands for nothing anyway.

    +=o RoboNerd o=+
  4. merlin Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    May 29, 1999
    star 4
    Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof

    [color=663300]Funny they just prevented people from saying God in school. :) [/color]
  5. DARTHPIGFEET Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 24, 2001
    star 4
    Let the war begin.

    I agree 100000000000% Love it or leave it. Simple as that, especially in a time like this. Anyone who burns a flag in my presense better pray that I don't catch them, because when I do well you know what I mean.

    There is no reason to burn the American flag and to do so is treasonous.
  6. FlamingSword Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 4, 2001
    star 6
    Funny they just prevented people from saying God in school.

    Yeah, I find that funny myself. One day we'll figure out the right balance. I jsut hope it comes sooner rather than later. :)


    Now about this flag burning thing. Although I find flag burning despicably wrong, I do not think there should be a law banning it.

    It isn't like this is just a whim of the people either. After 9/11, we should have more respect for our flag.

    Respecting the flag comes out of each individual person's freedom of choosing to respect the flag; not by some law abolishing any desecration. A law banning flag burning is not going to make people respect the flag any more than they do now.

    Whether the surge in patriotism since 9/11 is a whim or not remains to be seen. We'll see how strong and long the patriotism lasts. I sincerely hope that it was a wake up call for people and that it is a permanent thing. But after only nine months, it remains to be seen whether it is a mere whim or not.
  7. Coolguy4522 Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Dec 21, 2000
    star 4
    From the site I just linked to:

    There is a different vision of American liberty which suggests that what this country is all about is the maximum toleration of free expression, and we demonstrate our strength as a nation by allowing a maximum of outrageous acts to be committed. There is some truth to that vision, and the first Amendment obviously reflects a part of it, but the real question is where you draw the line, and which acts are entitled to protection as speech and which acts ought to be regulated as crimes. Political assassination, for example, is obviously crime, even though it is a form of expression. Similarly forbidden is spray painting political slogans on national monuments. The question we ought to be debating is where do you draw the line between on the one side protected speech under the First Amendment and on the other acts harmful to the order that we need to maintain to protect our freedoms.
  8. DARTHPIGFEET Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 24, 2001
    star 4
    Exactly you must draw the line somewhere. Actually it's been drawn for a long time.

    For example you cannot walk around nude in public, even if you think it's freedom of expression and speech.

    So their is a line and I say burning the flag is beyond that line. Preaching hate such as the Neo-Nazi's and KKK teach should be crossing the line.
  9. CwrnPuppet Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    May 19, 2002
    star 4
    I've never burned a flag before, but if it were illegal to do so, I would run out and buy a few dozen of them to make a bonfire.

    It's only a symbol. We have much more important concerns, if you ask me.
  10. TOUCHPUMP Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jan 25, 2002
    star 1
    Do we really need an amendment for this? I love my country and flag and would never consider burning it, but compared to other amendments it seems trivial to me. It won't stop flag burning. What does this amendment do? Does it really make our country better?

    Amendments are designed to define what our government can and cannot do to us. Flag burning has nothing to do with that. It is a slippy slope we should be careful about. It is an anti-government statement. If an anti-government protest related amendment is in the Constitution some power down the road could use that to their advantage.
  11. Fingorfin Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 7, 2001
    star 4
    I love my nation and her flag, but the freedom that that symbol stands for should include the right to burn the flag as a from of protest. It is a harmless expression of dissatisfaction towards the government, which is precisely the kind of speech/expression that the First Amendment is intended to protect.
  12. Sar-Tamber-lac Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    May 24, 2002
    star 5
    I have always heard and learned that flag burning was against the law, except in the case where the flag touches the ground. Growing up a military brat, I have never questioned it. I cannot ever imagine burning a flag. Yes, to some it is only a symbol, but it is a symbol that stands for everything America is built on, so it is actually more than a symbol or statement. It is a real thing, with real stories behind it, with the blood of our soldiers upon it, which has lead us into war for the common good and out with victory, it has inspired people since its creation, and represents the dreams of people far and wide. It deserves to be treated with the upmost respect.
  13. Jenavira Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jul 26, 1998
    star 1
    Funny they just prevented people from saying God in school.


    Actually, no, that was the courts. Different.


    As far as flag burning - as I see it, the flag stands for the things that make our country great. One of these, one of the most important of these, is the freedom to express our opinions without persecution. Among these opinions we are allowed to express is the opinion that the government is wrong. Thus, if the right to burn the flag is taken away, they have just taken away the very thing the flag stands for, and as it would then no longer be a symbol of any importance, there should be no problem with burning it.

    In short, the only reason I'd burn a flag is if they made it illegal.

    It is dissention and criticism that keeps our government strong and in line.


    Jenavira
  14. yodafett999 Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 24, 2000
    star 4
    Just to clarify something. They didn't ban anyone from saying "God" in school. Walk around a school and say it all you want. They prevented them from forcing someone to say it.

    The burning of the flag is, unfortunately for some, a protest of the government. It is, in some cases, the only way a person can accurately express their opinions on the state of the country and the government that keeps it in such a state.

    No government is perfect and certainly no government or nation is beyond criticism. Though I find it extreme, I'll support someone's right to burn the flag of their country just as I would support their right to write and publish an editorial on the way in which the government has broken down and how it should be fixed. It's a way of calling attention to their plight and grievance, that's all.

    It's also a way to non-verbally express their feelings.

    It's just a flag, after all. A piece of cloth. It is a symbol of our country but it's not the only symbol nor is its burning going to tear down the walls of freedom for anyone else.
  15. JediSmuggler Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jun 5, 1999
    star 5
    Given the strong passions that can occur in a case where the flag is burned in a protest, I feel that burning the flag comes close to what are known as "fighting words" and that needs to be taken into consideration.

    The Supreme Court has NOT seen things this way, and it should be changed.
  16. DARTHPIGFEET Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 24, 2001
    star 4
    "I've never burned a flag before, but if it were illegal to do so, I would run out and buy a few dozen of them to make a bonfire."

    This is why it should be made into an ammendment so that when people like this decide to do it then we can prosecute them and make them pay a nice fine or have jail time in store.

    "It is a harmless expression of dissatisfaction towards the government, which is precisely the kind of speech/expression that the First Amendment is intended to protect."

    Nope it is not harmless, and if your that ticked with our country then you should leave. I have no problem if you want to stand outside the capital and protest peacefully for what you believe but when you light our flag on fire then you've crossed the line and that should never happen. Not too mention that lighting a cloth object on fire could cause a fire to get out of control and start other fires and cause people to be harmed, just because you want to be an idiot.

    I would go as far to say if someone burns a flag in protest then the same thing should happen if looting happens when a riot occurs. Your shot on sight.

  17. council_of_trent Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    May 23, 2002
    star 1
    Actually, burning the flag in a respectful manner (imagine putting a Jedi's body on the funeral pyre) is the proper manner of disposing of it when it is old and worn. It is more disrespectful to have an old, faded, tattered flag flying (unless it has historically significant meaning, like having gone through battle or terrorist attack). It is more disrespectful still to just toss it in the trash can. You are supposed to destroy all traces of it when it becomes a disgrace to be seen.
  18. TOUCHPUMP Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jan 25, 2002
    star 1
    DARTHPIGFEET
    Yes shooting flag burners is a very good idea!

    The arguments for a flag burning amendment are primarily based in emotion and not fact. We should not let emotions rule our constitution. As a overwhelming majority we feel anger when we see a flag burned, but what else is it doing to you that you need it protected by the government? Do you see the argument I am making? Should we also make an amendment against signs that say I HATE AMERICA?

  19. Fingorfin Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 7, 2001
    star 4
    DARTHPIGFEET, tell me who gets hurt when someone resposibly burns a flag in protest.

    I would go as far to say if someone burns a flag in protest then the same thing should happen if looting happens when a riot occurs. Your shot on sight.

    What a great way to deal with political opposition. Why has no one ever thought of this before? [face_plain]
  20. CwrnPuppet Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    May 19, 2002
    star 4
    I'm sure that someone named Adolf has thought of that. *sigh*
  21. DARTHPIGFEET Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 24, 2001
    star 4
    If it's causing a major public disturbance like a riot would then law enforcement should be well within it's boundaries to shoot. If they had done this in those LA riots in 92 order could have been restored quicker. You all can look it up and it clearly states that if looting happens you can shoot the people looting on sight.


    You know what I find to be so amusing through all these issues is that the very people who hate and don't like this country and don't believe in patriotism and ideals of this nation will hide behind the very laws in this country to avoid prosecution. Talk about a bunch of cowards. Sorry but if your not going to respect this country and it's flag and I don't want to hear this crap about a silent protest by lighting the flag on fire stuff. If you can't write a convincing speech and give it in a civil way and state your case then you have no case. Your just out to cause trouble, and you will have trouble with me if I see it happening. That is why I say you either love this country you leave, because if your not happy here and don't like the way things are then leave. Don't burn a flag or cause disorder. Pack your bags and leave and don't let the door hit you in your butt when you leave. Not liking a policy or the way the government runs is no EXCUSE to burn a flag. State your case in a civil/legal manner and maybe something will be done, but burning a flag will in my book warrent you to be harmed or even killed.
  22. Sar-Tamber-lac Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    May 24, 2002
    star 5
    Don't let the door hit ya where the Good LORD split ya. :)

    In all honesty, yes, everyone is entitled to their opinion, but, as stated before, when the expression of their opinion could be potentially harmful, then it is probably isn't a good idea. The law grants us freedom to assemble and/or protest peacefully . Correct me if I'm wrong, but there's nothing peaceful about burning a flag that millions have died to protect.

    You know what I find to be so amusing through all these issues is that the very people who hate and don't like this country and don't believe in patriotism and ideals of this nation will hide behind the very laws in this country to avoid prosecution.

    So true, DARTHPIGFEET...so true...good call!
  23. Fingorfin Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 7, 2001
    star 4
    If I am wearing an ugly suit, big shoes, and a clown nose while dancing on the sidewalk and there are people stopping to gawk at me, should I be shot? After all, some people might consider that to be a disturbance.

    Large political protests are always subject to legitimate regulation (requiring permits and such) and if a flag burning should occur during such an event, there is no more disruption to status quo than there would be if the rally occurred without the burning. One reason that people may choose to burn a flag is to get media attention. TV does not give much attention to someone standing on a podium, but if the can get footage of a burning flag, knowing that people will be outraged by it, they will cover the event, giving the protesters and their complaints more exposure.

    You seem to be under the mistaken impression that I like flag burning. I do not. I get angry when I see my flag being burned, but because of the love that I have for the principles of this nation, I cannot condone taking away freedom, just so I will not be offended.
  24. CmdrMitthrawnuruodo Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 1, 2000
    star 6
    I agree with RoboNerd. Although I very much dislike it when it is done, but I realize why they are doing it. They aren't doing it because they hate America and all it stands for or anything. Only what the Government is currently doing that they dislike.

    Now, if someone burned our flag for reasons of hate and not protest, like those Palestians did shortly after 9-11, I'll be very pissed and they should go to jail for it. That would be considered treasonous, imo.
  25. JediLord Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 15, 2000
    star 4
    The flag is a sybmbol. It stands for freedom and liberty, it is NOT freedom and liberty itself. Anytime anyone says that people died for the flag, I laugh in their face and call them a liar. No one died for a piece of fabric. They died for the ideas behind that piece of fabric. So if you ban flag burning, YOU have raped the ideals of freedom and all they suffered and died for will be for naught.
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