June 28, 2006

Flag Burning Amendment defeated

By the closest margin yet, the proposed Flag Burning Amendment was defeated in the Senate yesterday by a vote of 66-34. 67 votes were needed for passage.

My view on this proposed amendment is probably best expressed by Senator Daniel Inouye (D) of Hawaii, a World War II Congressional Medal of Honor winner:

"This objectionable expression is obscene, it is painful, it is unpatriotic. But I believe Americans gave their lives in many wars to make certain all Americans have a right to express themselves, even those who harbor hateful thoughts."

To be sure, I do not want to give the impression that Inouye represents a majority view of veterans. The Citizens Flag Alliance, a pro-amendment group, is led by Daniel S. Wheeler, an American Legion member.

In addition, I heard Judge Andrew Napolitano on FNC yesterday stating that if this amendment had made into the Constitution, it would be the first time that Americans' political expression had been so curtailed. That isn't a good thing, in my opinion.

Napolitano also had issues with the actual text of the amendment:

"The Congress shall have power to prohibit the physical desecration of the flag of the United States."

The judge asked exactly how this would be enforced (paraphrased examples): Would a ripped, old T-shirt that has a flag emblem be considered "desecration"? Flag emblems are put on golf balls, for example -- would smacking one with your driver be considered "desecration"? How about girls' shorts that may have a flag emblazoned across their bottom?

You can see the hassle. Do we really want Congress spending their time deciding what is "flag desecration" and what is not? Don't they have, y'know, more important issues with which to be concerned?

Both of Delaware's senators, Joe Biden and Tom Carper, voted against the proposed amendment.

Posted by Hube at June 28, 2006 10:03 AM | TrackBack

Comments  (We reserve the right to edit and/or delete any comments. If your comment is blocked or won't post, e-mail us and we'll post it for you.)

I think we agree on something.....

A better quote would be the one were a republican I can't recall his name was doing his speech and he said something along the lines of do we really want to live in a country were five supreme court judges decide something for the whole country...

that to me is even scarier then Peter King wishing to look up reporters.

I will try to the specific quote.

Posted by: donviti at June 28, 2006 12:52 PM

Is that quote you refer to supposed to be a good or bad reference to the proposed amendment? I interpreted it as a pro-amendment quote as the amendment would be a much more democratic way of deciding the flag-burning issue.

Posted by: Hube at June 28, 2006 01:01 PM

... amendment process would be a better way of putting it.

Posted by: Hube at June 28, 2006 01:03 PM

What the pea-brains who crafted this Amendment fail to realize that flag ettiquette requires old flags to be burned when they are retired.

Posted by: Duffy at June 28, 2006 01:43 PM

What the pea-brains who crafted this Amendment also fail to realize is that nobody burns flags in protest.

Props to Carper who pointed this out in his statement.

Posted by: jason at June 28, 2006 02:48 PM

Post a comment

Remember personal info?