View Poll Results: Should flag burning be protected as free speech?

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  • Yes, I agree with the supreme court ruling

    60 81.08%
  • No, flag burning should be illegal/a crime

    10 13.51%
  • I am not sure

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Thread: Is flag burning free speech?

  1. #31
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    Re: Is flag burning free speech?

    Quote Originally Posted by SheWolf View Post
    The supreme court says flag burning is protected speech under the first amendment.

    Do you agree?

    Texas v. Johnson - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    Absolutely.
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  2. #32
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    Re: Is flag burning free speech?

    Unequivocally yes.
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  3. #33
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    Re: Is flag burning free speech?

    Wow, haha, I've spent approximately 2 hours a day since novemeber of '10 looking at Texas v. Johnson, and ways to use it to advocate free speech.

    Mr. Johnson was exercising his protected right to symbolic, expressive speech (as the SC pointed out) because his speech, when taken in context, had a larger meaning. He wasn't just burning the flag just to burn it, he was doing it to protest Reagan's policies.

    Furthermore, protestors around him chanted, and the entire event was at the Republican National Convention in Dallas, Texas (Johnson had some balls). The Supreme Court established the idea of "speech plus" which is synonymous with symbolic speech, and established that it's level of protection under the first amendment comes second only to "pure speech."

    Specifically, the Texas statute prohibited desecration of the American Flag, and the compelling interest was the flag as a symbol of national unity. Regardless, the SC held that the compelling interest of protecting the flag for that purpose was insuccifiently compelling.

    I suppose burning a flag might not necessarily be protected. For example, if it was done to represent a true threat (which was first mentioned in Watts v. U.S. and fully explained in Virginia v. Black) then it is not protected. Further, if it constitutes fighting words under Chaplinsky v. New Hampshire, it may also not be protected.

    Essentially, it depends on whether the statute the flag burning is being held liable under, whether the burning itself can be categorized as symbolic in nature, and if it is symbolic, whether the statute furthers a compelling state interest, and furthers that interest, "by the least restrictive means."

    If the statute constitutionally prohibits the flag burning, then it is not "free speech" which is in any case, a rather ambiguous term.
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  4. #34
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    Re: Is flag burning free speech?

    It's just a flag.

    Burn it, if you wish. Throw it in the garbage. Walk on it. Wear it. Makes no difference. The honor we show our flag comes from within the hearts of the individuals honoring it...not because it's sewn with a needle and thread. Actually, a pretty silly thing to waste much time thinking about. Don't want to honor it? Who cares?

    The American flag is honored in my home. I don't care if my neighbor picks up dog **** with his. It reflects on him, not the flag he's usin'.
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  5. #35
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    Re: Is flag burning free speech?

    Quote Originally Posted by MaggieD View Post
    It's just a flag.

    Burn it, if you wish. Throw it in the garbage. Walk on it. Wear it. Makes no difference. The honor we show our flag comes from within the hearts of the individuals honoring it...not because it's sewn with a needle and thread. Actually, a pretty silly thing to waste much time thinking about. Don't want to honor it? Who cares?

    The American flag is honored in my home. I don't care if my neighbor picks up dog **** with his. It reflects on him, not the flag he's usin'.
    Exactly. People who burn flag are childish idiots, but nothing more and certainly nothing criminal or treasonous.

  6. #36
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    Re: Is flag burning free speech?

    So long as you do it to your own property and you do it safely, it's none of anyone else's business what you do with a flag you own.
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  7. #37
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    Re: Is flag burning free speech?

    Quote Originally Posted by jamesrage View Post
    If you consider the literal definition of speech, then no its not free speech. Because speech is the expressing thoughts, feelings, or perceptions by the articulation of words. Burning anything is not the articulation of words. Burning stuff is no more speech than someone defecating on the sidewalk,someone walking around nude,someone urinating on the ground.
    Speech | Define Speech at Dictionary.com
    A very liberal and a very conservative man agreeing 100% on something....!
    Now that is something, and its not the only subject on which we agree.
    Our flag must be protected, must never be desecrated.
    Free speech, my foot !
    Last edited by earthworm; 03-05-11 at 10:51 PM.

  8. #38
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    Re: Is flag burning free speech?

    All of our flags are made in China and are therefore disposable.

    If you outlaw burning the flag, many more will be burned in protest than would have been if it had been kept legal. Protesters want to be arrested to make their point.
    Quote Originally Posted by Northern Light View Post
    The systems that ensure freedom and liberty are breaking down and fundamentalism is growing. Nobody is righteous anymore.


  9. #39
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    Re: Is flag burning free speech?

    Quote Originally Posted by SheWolf View Post
    The supreme court says flag burning is protected speech under the first amendment.

    Do you agree?

    Texas v. Johnson - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    Not only free speech, but property rights as well.
    You know the time is right to take control, we gotta take offense against the status quo

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    "I should have loved freedom, I believe, at all times, but in the time in which we live I am ready to worship it."

  10. #40
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    Re: Is flag burning free speech?

    As opposed to flag burning as I am, I think it should be protected as 'free speech'.

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