Should Congress pass a constitutional amendment to prohibit U.S. Flag desecration?

Yes, because flag desecration is conduct, not speech.
37% (981 votes)
Yes, because our flag is a revered symbol of all that we stand for.
47% (1235 votes)
No, because prohibiting flag desecration violates the First Amendment.
11% (285 votes)
No, because flag desecration is not worth a change to our Constitution.
5% (121 votes)
Total votes: 2622

 

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Steve Finney

June 10, 2010 - 8:59am

For as much as I depise the act and as I know many who have shed blood under our flag, having the right to express oneself is uniquely American. It is one of the defining freedoms that seperates us from the other countries of the world. Blood shed was shed exactly to protect freedom.

hmbabb

June 10, 2010 - 5:49pm

Times change. I enlisted in 1965 when flag burning was becoming a popular form of protest. Now I see self-described patriots driving around with filthy tattered flags on their vehicles complaining about desecration by others. Time was when there was only one reason to maintain a flag in that condition, and there are no foxholes around here. Time was when those flags would have been collected and ceremoniously burned.

hm1wil

June 18, 2010 - 2:01pm

While I don't agree & abhor the burning of our flag as a protest, I agree that these same people who speak out about flag burning are disrespecting the flag by displaying filthy & tattered flags. When you do this you loose your point with the flag burners about respect for the flag.

Legionnaire8585

June 10, 2010 - 5:58pm

I am a Army Vietnam veteran and Legionnaire who proudly wears flag pins and displays flags at home. If I saw someone desecrating Old Glory, I would not be resonsible for my actions against them.

kjkelly

June 10, 2010 - 6:15pm

Though it makes me cry to see protestors use Old Glory and desecrate her it would crush me to see our nation take away that ability to make a statement as part of the freedom of speech.

I still wear my nations uniform daily, am a veteran and active member in the legion - I am as patriotic as heck, as such the reason I wear this uniform and am willing to risk all is to protect all of the freedoms granted in our Constitution and Bill of Rights - yes our country could amend that document; if we get there then I fear that the true fathers of our country would roll over in their graves to see us become the tyranny they fought to escape.

Don Reed

June 10, 2010 - 7:03pm

I will never understand how an action can be classified as Freedom of Speech. As the quesion is wordered it is an action and that is how other nations seem to act, however , I would like to think that Americans are above this sign of contempt. I can hear and see the reaction if any of our people burned a Mexican Flage out in the streets.
Sure make a LAW, in the past 50 years of so, we have a law for evrything else in this FREE country.

islander

June 10, 2010 - 7:36pm

For those who are super-sensitive against a Constitutional Amendment against desecration, based on Freedom of Speech issues, there perhaps could be another approach. How about Federal/State laws granting immunity from any criminal/civil law, to those protecting the flag against desecration as long as reasonable and the necessary force is used? Although courts have considered a persons conduct to be construed to be an expression of Free Speech, many of us do not accept that premise.

EShattuck

June 11, 2010 - 9:56am

Like others, I don't truly agree with the idea of a Constitutional Amendment to specifically forbid desecration of the flag. However, I also do not believe in government protection of those who do desecrate the flag. As Islander has suggested, those of us who would be willing to stand up and protect the flag from desecration on our own should be allowed to do so.

boucains

June 10, 2010 - 11:30pm

Seeing our flag flying inspires strong emotions. The fact that those feelings can be different - up to and including wanting to burn it - makes me proud that I spent 6 years of my life defending our way of life. In Santa Cruz there is a group who goes to the beach on a specific day each year and respectfully burn a flag to celebrate that exact freedom. There area others who wear or use the flag in a disrespectfull manner. I always take the time to speak with these people and through dialog see if they will change - or at least fully understand - how they are dishonoring the people who have fought and died to keep that flag flying. It is amazing how many of them will stop their disrespectful behavior. As for "activists", they want attention and anarchy. I say let them burn the flag then take a flight to the country which fits them best.

boucains

June 10, 2010 - 11:35pm

Just a comment - a Constitutional Convention, which has to be opened in each state to send delegates, is open to change ANYTHING in the constitution, not just flag desecration. Be very careful what you ask for. We may lose more than we gain.

ahusser

June 11, 2010 - 8:15am

As usual we are missing the point. It is a waste of time effort and money to have a flag desecration amendment. It is dithering while Rome burns type of effort. Other more important issues are at hand like keeping the socialist regime now in office and both houses of congress and soon the supreme court from destroying our way of life in the name of "progress" or whatever.

What use is this amendment if we give our freedom away. I revere and respect our flag and country and am a Vietnam Veteran but other more pressing issues are at hand. Personally I favor an amendment to the Constitution (now floating around the internet) "Congress shall make no law applying to citizens of the USA that does not apply equally to Senators & Representatives; and Congress shall make no law that applies to Senators & Representatives that does not apply equally to citizens of the USA."

tahpe

June 11, 2010 - 9:08pm

It is comments like this that make me wonder if I will continue to renew my membership in the American Legion. I see more fascism coming from certain factions of the congress and the courts than I see a "socialist regime".

From another Vietnam veteran!

Bubblehead

June 11, 2010 - 10:47am

I don't save a lot of the things I read, but sometimes the written words of others are worth the effort. I see some of them as a reminder that respect must be earned. For all things earned, a price must be paid. If freedom is to mean anything, then it must be allowed; That is the price. The desecration of our flag is an emotional event. We cannot make people respect our flag without sacrificing freedom.

Remember

It was the Veteran, not the reporter,
who has given us the freedom of the press.

It was the Veteran, not the poet,
who has given us freedom of speech.

It was the Veteran, not the lawyer,
who has given us the right to fair trial.

It was the Veteran, not the campus organizer,
who has given us freedom to demonstrate.

It is the Veteran, who salutes the flag,
who served under the flag,
and whose coffin is draped by the flag,
who allows the protester to burn the flag.

Written by Father Denis Edward O'Brien, USMC
All Gave Some - Some Gave All

NamVet6668

June 12, 2010 - 11:34pm

For all of you shallow minded bleeding heart liberals who like to read things into our Constitution that were never meant by the Original Authors: The First Amendment was created to guarantee all of us the right to SPEAK OUT AGAINST OUR GOVERNMENT WHEN WE FEEL THEY ARE WRONG, FREEDOM OF THE PRESS TO PRINT THE TRUTH ABOUT WHAT OUR GOVERNMENT IS DOING, RIGHT OR WRONG, and THAT'S ALL IT WAS CREATED FOR!!!!!! What the hell part of that do you read Destruction into, or Desecration into????? Our Military Men and Women have DIED for that FLAG, and it's very obvious that you liberal scum have never put on a uniform and learned to appreciate it!!!! So, SHUT THE HELL UP ABOUT YOUR "RIGHT" TO DESTROY IT. That includes the Clintons who refused to pass an amendment to protect it while they were occupying the White House....Paul Gordon, Nam Medic, 1966-1968

CalBoomer

June 13, 2010 - 1:17am

Really ? This is about the Clintons ? They didn't defend the flag ? Didn't they have a Republican Congress and Senate ? Where were those people ? Where was Reagan and both W and HW Bush ? They had Republican majority too !
Why didn't they push for an amendment ?

Secondly, I saluted the flag. I enlisted to serve my COUNTRY ! Not the flag !

And by the way, the first amendment gives the right to say "shut the hell up", but don't drop that line on me !
You can wrap yourself in the flag if you want to but to me that is a desecration !

flash

May 31, 2012 - 4:31pm

In my opinion you cannot legislate respect, it is something you should be taught in such away that you understand why it deserves respect.

flash

May 31, 2012 - 4:40pm

I do not think the flag should be displayed willy nilly as a person so chooses. Such as clothing.

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